It’s Fashion Flash Monday

fashion flash logoThis 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.



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