Hands up those of us who are average height or below and have dreamt what it would be like to be a taller woman?
Many of us believe that those added inches would make all our style issues simply evaporate!
Well as we know the grass is always greener isn’t it?
Now put yourself in the shoes of someone who is >5’10” (1.78M), so considered a taller woman. While it might feel great to survey the world from a different perspective; think about the challenges you face and if you’re stepping into those shoes you will probably find that they are too big!
Just for a moment envisage what it might be like to struggle to battle with jeans which appear to have a Mexican stand off with your shoes and sleeves that argue with your wrists!
Add to that a posture with a few legacy challenges; as you struggled not to be taller than your friends during that frenzied teenage growth spurt.
Like most style challenges if you are a taller woman it’s about following a framework. But as I will keep reiterating it’s about how you express yourself in a way that feels right for you.
Like my recent blog about petite fashion, if you are a taller woman you are not a unique body shape. Being tall is another dimension on top of your body shape. You are most likely to be either a slender athletic shape, an inverted triangle or a pear body shape.
I hope that the following tips and advice, along with my suggestions on where you can shop will be useful if you are a taller woman.
1. Jeans and Trousers
If you are a tall slender athletic body shape or an inverted triangle you are going to look great in most styles of trousers and jeans.
You will look fantastic in skinny jeans, but equally as good in flared jeans or trousers, which will add some width to your slender frame.
If you are a tall pear body shape, you want to look at trousers and jeans with a wide or straight leg but the key is to keep the area around the hips as fuss free as possible!
The real difference though comes around the detailing on trousers and jeans. Tall pear shapes should avoid adding bulk with pockets and pleats as this will add width at the widest part of your body. But if you are a slender tall woman then you may want to add some detail and width at your hips to create a slightly curvier silhouette.
I’m going to lump sleeves into a general pile rather than explore blouses, dresses, jackets and coats as separate elements.
The problem is the same regardless of garment – finding sleeves that are long enough for a taller woman and what to do when the sleeves are not quite right.
Bell sleeves look great on tall slender women. Flaring out from the shoulder and ending anywhere between elbow and wrist. The width of the sleeves will help to make your arms look shorter.
Regardless of your body shape, look for double cuffed blouses that you can create a slight boho chic look by wearing the cuff extended.
Sleeves that are just a bit too short can be pushed up to give a ¾ length appearance (versus finishing just shy of your wrists). Add chunky bracelets and a wide strapped watch to create balance.
You will look great in mid-calf length skirts and dresses. This length is really difficult to pull off unless you are a taller woman. This is because it creates a horizontal line just where you don’t need it at the widest part of your calves.
Maxi dresses will look amazing. If you are very tall just check that the length is long enough! A fitted maxi dress with a split for a party will just make your legs look endless!
If the style is quite loose then consider making a waist if you are a slender frame. If you have a tall pear shape body then consider styles that skim your hips and drawn attention to your top half. Strapless or spaghetti straps are great.
You will also look great in skirts that finish just above the knee and for those with slender legs then you can opt for mini skirts.
Do not feel you are consigned to a life in flats if they don’t appeal!
Like most style tips that I give, it’s about your own confidence levels and not about what you ‘should’ do. If you feel good and want to wear heels then go ahead.
I’m forever giving women tips on how to make their legs look longer. I normally advise avoiding shoes with chunky ankle straps and details. These make the wearer look shorter as they create horizontal lines. Guess who will look absolutely fantastic in chunky ankle straps?
I would however look at more rounded toes and styles – avoiding pointy toe styles, as these will make your feet look longer. If you have very slender legs beware of footwear that’s too chunky as it will have a ‘Minnie Mouse’ effect.
You will also look fantastic in over the knee boots with those lovely long legs.
Belts – As a taller woman you will look fantastic in belts.
They will create a horizontal line and add definition to your waist. If you choose contrasting colours this will create even more of a horizontal line.
Remember that every horizontal line will add width and reduce height to the eye.
Bags – large day bags are yours to wear and hold! Just a note of caution that any bag styles that are too chunky may still overwhelm you if you are very slender. So consider this when you are choosing handbags.
Large jewellery will look great on you, but again I will just say that if you are extremely slender be careful that the styles you pick are in proportion.
Choker necklaces look amazing on tall women as you have the height to really show off the look. If you are a pear shaped body then even better as you’re drawing the eye upwards.
Learn to love your height and not feel it’s a hindrance. I can guarantee that most women under 5’ 7” would love to be taller!
Shopping Suggestions If You Are A Taller Woman
Long Tall Sally – ‘At Long Tall Sally we don’t just sell clothes for tall women. We champion tall women.’ Since 1976 LTS has been specializing in sourcing clothing and footwear brands for tall women.
Tall Girls – founded in 1998 by Joanne McHarg, who at 6’3” with a size 10 shoe became increasingly frustrated with the lack of footwear choices for women with larger shoe sizes.
6 Foot Fashion – launched by Kelly Scott as a one stop shop for clothes and accessories for taller women.
Several High Street brands also offer a ‘tall range’ but their ranges are not as wide nor do they cater for the really taller woman as the specialist retailers I have listed.