This week Fashion Flash is hosted by Allison of Never Say Die Beauty. I was a huge fan of this beautiful site long before she joined Fashion Flash. Allison takes her reviews very seriously. She does not deal with products she does not trust or believe in. When Never Say Die Beauty suggests a new moisturizer or lipstick, I know that my face will be happy I took her advice.
Fashion Flash Book Review:Short Chic by Allison Leopold and Anne Mariw Cloutier
Browsing through a second hand bookstore in September, I discovered this incredibly useful fashion guide. Written by a pair of former editors of Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar who are themselves petite, it combines real fashion chops with personal experience to provide page after page of great tips and guidelines.
These days so much fashion advice both in magazines and online is a thinly disguised attempt just to get readers to keep buying clothing. It’s wasteful on so many levels– economically, psychologically and even environmentally. Like so many women I follow fashion advice but often wind up never wearing or giving away so many “must-haves”.
Short Chic is so packed with information, I found myself taking notes. It drills down into fashion fundamentals that helped explain why some purchases worked and other just lingered in the closet. Rather than pushing the typical celebrity/ designer based fashion advice it explores tones of colors, textures, and proportions that helped me pick cothing that I really love to wear. For example, pink is a flattering color to my skin tones, but some pink sweaters and scarves that look great in stores, do not work for me. Turns out dense colors like hot pink, bright green or flag blue overwhelm my short frame. On the other hand soft pinks are both feminine and actually make you look taller. This explains why my beautiful hot pink cahsmere sweater has spent most of its life in a drawer while a pale pink silk blouse is my go to top for business trips.
Fashion Tips Worthy of Fashion Flash
The color advice in Short Chic is alone worth the price of the book, but its so much more. Great tips include:
- Look for soft fabrics that drape on your body
- For dresses, avoid shiny fabrics like satin or velvet. But these fabrics can be used for jackets and coats.
- Search out flat weaves like pique and jersey for dreses, skirts and pants
- Sweater coats are a petite gals best friend
- Look for small collars and narrow lapels for coats and jackets
- To stand out at night wear deep jewel tones cranberry or hunter green rather than black
- The difference between hard and soft jewelry — and how to wear both
When I brought home Short Chic, I used it to sort out my closet. After I purged the stuff that never really worked for me, I followed the book to fill in items to create genuinely falttering outfits. I was able to combine what I already had in news ways.When I did go shopping at the post holiday sales I snapped up a black and white checked jacket and red print oblong scarf that had been described in the book. I would never had thought to pair the two, but the two small scale prints totally worked.
This book was actually published in 1988, but the advice for petite style is timeless. The book is out of print but you can still find copies on Amazon. If you are 5’4″ or under, its definately worth the hunt.