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Books on Fitting Peites

fashionspy | Posted in Fitting on

I am a fashion designer in the Chicago area and I plan to launch a contemporary missy petite clothing line, targeted toward stylish petite women age 25-40. Does anyone have any suggestions of good books on petites; Fitting, Pattern making, style advice? I am also looking to sign up for a class on fitting petites or the petite market. Any suggestions are welcome. Thanks.


  1. Beth | | #1

    I'll throw out a few suggestions. The latest Complete Vogue Sewing Book, from maybe 2006?, has suggestions for petite women's fashions. The segment is near the beginning of the book and describes how petite women can select clothing to emphasize their small frame and/or short height. Vogue cast the petite woman in a positive light, as able to select clothing only she can carry off.

    Personally, I find such labels demeaning and unhelpful. How can petite be concealed, if you are short, you're short, make the best of it.


  2. User avater
    ThreadKoe | | #2

    Fitting is fitting. Any good fitting course is going to give you the skills you need. What you need to do is look at your market first. There are already a fair number of missy petite clothing lines out there for the range of ages you are looking at. What my experience with my petite friends has been is there is not much in the line of stylish clothing in the age range of 35-65 that is not too young looking or to fuddy duddy. Just my opinion. Cathy

  3. sewchris703 | | #3

    I have a suggestion for your petite line--petite women can have shoulders and cup sizes that are larger than A or a B. I'm only 5'3". I can wear petite/short pants but I have to buy Misses sizes in tops because the shoulders of the petite tops aren't wide enough. And my dd, who is only 5' tall, has the same problem. And she is a D cup.


    1. Stillsewing | | #4

      I can echo one of the last posters suggestions. While I am not a petite a friend of my mother who at age 70+ was still probably an American size 8 was always conscious that the only clothes she could buy would have her looking like "mutton dressed up as lamb" as she could only find clothes in the "junior miss" section, as it was called then, to fit her. This I'm sure is an area in the market that must be ready to be developed.

      1. User avater
        JunkQueen | | #5

        I have to agree with you. One of my sisters wears a size 2 or 4 depending upon whether or not she's "gained weight".... She is 74 and just retired in June, so is extremely active. She complains all the time about not being able to find clothes that fit that are really age-appropriate and stylish. She does not sew. At all.I edited this post to correct sizes from (1 or 3) to (2 or 4). Sorry about the typo.

        Edited 9/6/2008 9:24 pm by JunkQueen

        1. Stillsewing | | #6

          Gosh, I don't really understand American sizes, but I would think that you would hardly be there at all in a size 3 let alone a 1, in fact I don't relate to anything less than a size 12 or 14. As all my clothes were made for me by mother until I left school and by then I had reached size 14, all the other sizes passed me by. I do understand your sister's dilemma, it is so difficult to buy what you really want to wear. I find that when I want a particular dress/outfit I genarally finish up making it. -- impossible to find or buy. Impulse purchases are a different matter.

          1. User avater
            JunkQueen | | #7

            You know, I didn't proof my last post, I just typed and posted. I'll go back and correct it.... Anyhow, she wears sizes 2 and 4.... Sizes 1 and a 3 are junior sizes, with younger styling, though *similar* in size. Sorry about the confusion. As best I can recall, a 2 or 4 here would correspond to a 6 or 8 in British sizing, if that gives you some perspective. She struggles to keep her weight up to at least 100#. Sometimes I don't like her very much. TeeHeeHee... Just kidding, just kidding. She's always been tiny like that, even though she's about 5'3", I think. It isn't an age related weight or height loss.

          2. Stillsewing | | #8

            Thanks for the info. It just goes to show that we all have our problems! particularly in fitting.

          3. User avater
            JunkQueen | | #9

            Trust me, my fitting problem is NOT the same as hers. Quite the opposite. People look at us strangely when we are introduced as sisters and question the veracity of the introduction with, "You are SISTERS???" She's still my favorite sister though, and we don't get to see each other nearly enough.

          4. Stillsewing | | #10

            You are lucky, just enjoy her company. Now that she is retired you may get to see her more often.

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