September 30th, 2008
Q: I’m 19 years old, 6′2", and have a skinny body. I love fashion, but for religious reasons I’m supposed to wear modest clothes, like long skirts or dresses, but they always make me look even taller and not very attractive. I hope you have some advice for me on how I can look chic, shorten my height, and still dress modestly.
A: To make yourself look shorter, the key is to manage the visual length of your legs. Basically, the shorter your legs look, the shorter you look. So skip the high waisted pants, and instead opt for low rise styles. Any garments that visually lower your waistline will help to create the illusion of a shorter you - drop waist coats and dresses, skirts with a lower waistline, and low rise pants.
The other key way to manage your height is to choose garments with horizontal details. The horizontal details draw the eye from side to side, which will help to visually shorten you. Look for horizontal stripes, horizontal seamlines, and any other details that visually cut your body widthwise.
Layering is going to be your friend as you put your outfits together. With your height (and your age), you have the opportunity to experiment more with layering. Pictured is a simple fashion formula that you can play with: a drop waist coat, a long sweater that hits at the hip, a top with horizontal details, wide-leg jeans, and flats. When the weather gets chillier, add a colorful scarf to the outfit for extra color and texture.
Last words - I know it may be hard now, but I hope that you’ll come to embrace your height in time. I’m at the opposite end of the height scale, and I always wanted to be tall, if only for the fashion! With your tall, slim physique, you can wear the styles that I can only dream of!.
What advice do you have for fashion-forward women who dress modestly? Share your style with us in the comments!