Can short, petite women wear maxi dresses?

Celebrities love maxi dresses. But what do you think of the style when it comes to those of us that are height challenged?

Every week on Wednesday, the stylish ladies of Smart magazine will answer beauty and fashion questions. Have a question? Email

This week’s question:

Can short, petite women pull off maxi dresses?

Find out if you are tall enough to wear a maxi dress!

Ashley May

Ashley May:The short answer is no. I don’t think short girls can find maxi dresses that would fit, without needing serious alterations. Especially with shorter women, the dress must not only be the right length, but the piece must be form-fitting.

The key to wearing a maxi dress successfully is maintaining shape. It’s a comfortable, feminine look — not suffocation by material.

Sam Dellinger

Sam Dellinger: Short girls can definitely wear maxi dresses, but because they come in longer lengths, you will need to hem them. I take a lot of my items to the seamstress at Burlington Coat Factoryat 2801 E. Market St. in York.

Another thing to keep in mind is the pattern. If the pattern is big and loud it might overwhelm a smaller frame.

Make sure your bra straps aren’t showing, invest in a strapless bra
or try the Bustfree bra, which are foam inserts that cling to the clothing you are wearing. I love using them for dresses and tops that you don’t want to see bra straps.

Emileigh Clare

Emileigh Clare:I’m all about breaking fashion rules. Loud prints? Yes! And I totally endorse the color white, all year round. However, I also believe in picking your fashion battles. Shorties, like myself, should not choose this one. Maxi dresses are built for tall frames. If you are short and you want to cover up your legs, try for a skirt or dress that ends slightly below the knee so it doesn’t completely cut your legs off, making you look stumpy.

Mid-calf hemlines might also work, especially if you are willing to wear heels or wedges. By the way, I don’t even think petite brides should wear long-length bridal dresses, but that’s a battle for another day!

Ashley May is a multiplatform journalist at the York Daily Record / Sunday News. See more of Ashley’s fashion-forward tips on every Wednesday. Follow her on Twitter @VisitAshley.

Samantha Dellinger loves fashion because it’s how each person can express their individuality. She thinks the biggest fashion faux pas people make is wearing the same thing/style over and over again. Follow her @BlackCat911.

Emileigh Clare likes to keep it classy by mixing old-Hollywood style glamor with a playful pin-up style. She has also been known to pause movies like “Inception” and “Vertigo” just to look at the pretty clothes. Follow her on Twitter @MissEClare.


You may also like...

2 Responses

  1. August 8, 2012

    […] last week’s question: Can short, petite women wear maxi dresses? […]

  2. August 15, 2012

    […] last week’s question: Is makeup primer really necessary? […]

Leave a Reply