Despite the fact that new brands are launched literally every day, and even the designers themselves started talking about overproduction, there is still a shortage of sizes on the market that are not squeezed into the S – L scale. We have already talked about the difficulties faced by those who are looking for clothes in size XL and above. And this time we talked with slender girls of short stature, whose sizes also rarely take into account mass market brands, and found out where they buy things and what difficulties they face.
Text: Tanya Reshetnik
My height is 153 centimeters, I have a narrow waist and a relatively large butt. With rare exceptions, I always choose just the smallest size presented, regardless of whether it is a man's or a woman's thing (I like T-shirts from the men's department more).
In general, I have no difficulties in choosing clothes. Almost anything can be stitched or shortened, and often I do it myself - at home, without a sewing machine. You can shorten a T-shirt, for example, in an hour. The process relaxes me - you can listen to lectures or interviews in parallel, or just be in silence with yourself. If there is absolutely no time to do this or I can't cope without a typewriter, I give the thing to the studio - when I moved to St. Petersburg, I discovered that it comes out very cheaply (I haven't come across such ateliers in Moscow) and the quality of work is excellent.
About five or seven years ago, I stopped buying things in the mass market, with the exception of trips abroad, because there are brands there that we do not have. I always go to Urban Outfitters or Weekday. I've never had a problem finding one that fits well. I recently bought Dr. Denim collection Petite, which even a little tight. In Russia, I look for things in second-hand shops or support small local brands - the same Liars Collective or Volchok. But I feel that Russian brands are no different from foreign ones in terms of their size grid. Although I noticed that often the size XS turns out to be M (for example, dresses of the “Cherry” brand), this also happens with foreign brands.
I almost always shorten things and sometimes stitch them in if I want a more fitted fit, but usually I prefer clothes that fit loosely. Skinny jeans are an exception, but "moms" have been liked more lately. To order, I sewed a thing only once - a leather jacket from my friends Blitz. After all, this is the kind of thing that will fit really well only if it is made according to your measurements.
In general, I notice that recently many brands have launched Petite, Tall, Curve collections. I myself, however, do not always pay attention to Petite, but buy what I like.
All my life I was the smallest in all companies - my height barely reaches 160. As a teenager I was very thin, and closer to twenty I became, as they say, slender - hips appeared, which I was very happy about. Before that I wore XS, or even XXS, if I found that size, now I wear XS – S or French 34, depending on the brand and model.
I regularly face difficulties when choosing clothes. Most things that suggest at least some kind of fit (that is, about everything) turn out to be wide in the shoulders and back, too long (either in general, or in length from shoulders to the waist, when it comes to dresses and overalls), suitable either waist, or hips, but never at the same time. Therefore, for me, the topic of all midi-length things that I really want to wear, jackets and other near-suit style is practically closed. About oversize and "things from a man's shoulder" I generally keep quiet - every attempt to wear something like this leads to the fact that I look like a preschool girl who climbed into my father's closet.
Therefore, I have formed a certain set of styles and categories of things that I choose from year to year: jeans and trousers with a high waist; plus or minus short A-line skirts; T-shirts, linen tops and shirts (which almost always have to roll up their sleeves); dresses above the knee with a free cut. I already know which cut will suit me, and which one I don't even need to look at - for example, culottes immediately turn me into a dwarf.
Buying clothes is like completing a quest. Each attempt to find my own brand ends with the fact that six months later, his patterns change and I have to go on a new crusade. For example, earlier I was wearing Acne Studios jeans that I could easily buy without trying them on - but now they do not fit, although my size has not changed. Therefore, I buy things from time to time, not paying much attention to the brand, and most often I wear it for a long time. I usually cut my jeans, but I don't tinker with complicated things like a coat - you can just as well sew from scratch in a tailor shop.
My choice of clothes depends not so much on what brands I like, but on what sits on me, so I don't have any favorite brands as such. More precisely, there are favorites in theory - and there are those who sit on me in practice. For example, all my life I loved everything that Raf Simons does, but his things have never sat down in the last ten years - not one of them, not one of the brands. I play back on shoes, accessories and men's T-shirts, which I tuck into skirts.
But not later than yesterday I bought a cool jacket from the school collection for a boy of twelve or thirteen years old in the children's department of H&M, about whom my friend said that he looks like the same Raf on me. In general, they regularly have a cut suitable for babies, for which many thanks - still the materials would be better.
I always take basic jeans from Mango and white Uniqlo U T-shirts in stacks of several. For many years now I have been buying identical white Ralph Lauren shirts made of Non Iron fabric and I wear them all year round both on my own and instead of a jacket on a dress or T-shirt. I am often lucky with & Other Stories (unlike COS, which does not sit at all) and with French brands like Maje and Sandro - apparently, they understand well slenderness. True, lately I do not like their design and the sharply increased prices. I wear silk shirts, my favorite and proven ones - from the Equipment brand and in the Parcel store (I also buy all the sweaters and some dresses there).
I practically don't wear Russian brands - not for reasons of principle, it just happened that way. I have a favorite black slip dress, Ushatava, which I have been wearing this summer and still wouldn’t have crawled out of it if it weren’t for the weather. I like their outerwear and suit them (jackets, shirts), but the bottom is the same story - either large at the waist, or narrow at the hips.
Unfortunately, I am too lazy to sew custom-made items. But I have my favorite linen coat, Maje, which I have not taken off for several years and am going to take it to the atelier so that they can sew the same one, but from a different fabric, according to his patterns. I also dream of making a silk dress from Albina Zueva from MYy812 - but with my quickness it will most likely be no earlier than a wedding one. Once, however, I very successfully altered Stella McCartney trousers - I bought them without trying them on, they turned out to be completely out of my cut, and the wonderful seamstress practically reassembled them and achieved a perfect fit.
Before, I endlessly ordered things online and constantly miscalculated, so now I do it extremely rarely and only when I am completely sure. I have bought online base at J.Crew many times, which have really small sizes. But I calmly order shoes, because everything is simple with this: the smallest size in the line of any brand, be it the 35th or 36th, always suits me.
My height is 152 centimeters, and I weigh within forty kilograms and in general I have always been thin and small. I wear size 38-40 (ie XS), or for a child of ten to twelve years old. With such a size, it is difficult to find a thing for your figure: suits or tight-fitting dresses.Finding skinny jeans is a problem (I go to the children's departments for them). But I do not see a tragedy in this, because in most cases I prefer oversize and often wear clothes two or three sizes larger than mine. A considerable part of the wardrobe is made up of men's things: from T-shirts to brother's jeans.
In general, I like cheap and stupid things. I love second-hand, looking for used clothes on sale and exchange sites. I - without any sarcasm - like things that can even be bought at the grocery store. Recently I was in a province in China, and there for me - a lover of cheap trash - a real paradise.
I buy basic clothes in the simplest stores. If I want something of high quality, I go to Uniqlo. If I need an outfit for a performance, I look for something unique on the internet or vintage departments. Regarding the mass market: small sizes are bought up in the first week of admission. Therefore, there is a chance, the main thing is to be in time. I hardly know Russian brands, but I really love the Light On Mars brand. Their tulle skirts with flowers are love. This brand is just for creative people: not trivial, but not shockingly underground either.
Now, to be honest, in general, something strange is happening with the size grid for everyone, so I try not to buy things online (especially shoes). But in general the concept of XS has changed - now everything has become larger and taller. Most brands want to sell more and target the mass consumer.
Most often I come across brands with the size range S – XL. It's not very convenient for me, but it's not a tragedy either: we live in a time of an overabundance of things and finding the right clothes is not a problem, if, of course, you are not squeamish about second-hand or vintage and you have time to search. In Moscow it is not so difficult, but in the regions it can be difficult to choose.
With an increase of 160 centimeters, my figure is average - not skinny and not full. I just buy underwear and jeans in the smallest size, and tops, shirts, jackets - a size larger. I'm more comfortable this way.
The hardest part comes with trousers, jeans and dresses. I often take clothes in the mass market, but, unfortunately, there are not always the same models for girls of different heights. Most of the dresses are made for people from 170 centimeters - so, the mini turns out to be knee-deep to me and does not sit at all as intended.
I often buy jeans at Topshop, their size suits me perfectly, and they sew well - both in quality and in a variety of models. Of the minuses - mom jeans or wide models in size 25 by 30 (the smallest in the size grid of the brand. - Approx. ed.) turn out to be large. You have to look for such things in the Petite line - and you will find her figs! Sometimes I take Levi’s jeans, but there the size is gigantic, I have to carry it in the atelier and shorten it, and sometimes sew it in. But Levi’s give a coupon for free trimming at the tailor's shop while keeping the original seam. This, of course, pleases, although it is still a hassle. But sometimes perfect jeans are worth it?
In the mass market, small sizes are also available in H&M, but I buy little there, I do not like the quality. In Pull & Bear, the quality also leaves much to be desired, there are even trousers with legs of different lengths, but there are jeans for short girls and models. There were also stamps with a strange dimensional grid. For example, Oysho simply does not have many models of XS size panties, it all starts with S. And some bras do not have an A cup, only B and more.
I have no problems with online shopping. Most often I make orders for ASOS, there are many European brands with the Petite line, it suits me perfectly. Usually these things go in size, although it happens that something is large. And a pair of ASOS tops turned out to be small. Over time, I stopped making mistakes and always carefully look at the size range. I haven’t sewed things to order yet, but I would like to, and not only because of the size, but also because the stores often don’t have what I like. I'm picky about the details.
advertising agency strategist
My height is exactly 150 centimeters, I have narrow shoulders and a small foot size 34. Until the age of twenty-two, I wore only children's clothes for ten to twelve years.Baby Zara, Mango, United Colors of Benetton and Sisley were my Mecca. But then there was a hormonal change, and the hips began to fit into children's jeans with difficulty, and the breasts (albeit the first size) - into tight shirts and dresses. Now I still wear loose models from the children's department, but I also buy the smallest adult clothing - the labeling depends on the brand or even its separate line.
It is difficult for me to choose a trouser suit and any things with a rigid shoulder line, such as a jacket or coat. School uniforms hang in children's departments (even if the suit is in daisy, it still looks like the uniform of a high school student - I don't know how they do it). Well, I still have a big ass for an eleven-year-old child, so the pants don't fit. In adult stores, everything is big for me in the waist and especially in the shoulders, and with my height, even an extra half centimeter is contraindicated.
So far, I have not solved this problem. I am still in a passive search, although it would be more correct to call it an unquenchable hope for a miracle. Mostly I shop in the mass market, especially from brands with the Petite line, so that the waist is in place: Topshop, ASOS. I go to Monki for denim - they have great quality fabric and waist circumference like mine. I also occasionally buy XXS size dresses and outerwear there. T-shirts - Uniqlo U in size XS. I monitor children's lines Zara, Mango, Tommy Hilfiger, Guess, Sisley, although I rarely buy - at some point they began to sew undershirts and generally stopped changing patterns from season to season. But there are still some good sweaters.
I have long ceased to buy clothes with the prospect of being sewn. The proportions are violated, the fit changes, creases and bags appear. I just resigned myself to not wearing certain models and brands. I only remove the length if the thing is of a simple cut, and I do it myself. I wear some models in an elongated version. If a conventional dress from Uniqlo or COS is knee-deep for average girls, then I'm wearing it - a confident midi striving for maxi. Well, ok! The main thing is that the waist is in place or not at all.
I have a special love for custom tailoring. All my childhood, my mother's friend sewed clothes for me, I had an amazing wardrobe. At the age of sixteen I began to try to buy things in adult stores - she altered them for me almost from scratch, because it was impossible to “just shorten them a little”. Aunt Nadya came up with outfits for all the important events in my life, including the school prom. And she would have made the perfect pantsuit and wedding dress, but she died eight years ago of cancer. She had talent and skill.
Last year I went to sewing and sewing courses myself, learned to design and sew blouses, dresses and skirts. But not because I was bored with shopping in stores, but in order to take a break and remove the alarm, switch to something applied. In short, I practiced mindfulness in this way and received a bonus in the form of skills useful for my complexion. Mom gave me a cool car, but I only take it out when I need to shorten something. It would be cool to sew something, but you can't find time, there are always more important things to do.
I visit ASOS regularly to see what's in the Petite line. I used to order in online mass-market stores, but often burned myself - there is no Facebook group where my advertisement for the sale of some unsuitable item of the standard XS would not hang. Now I order only from proven children's Zara and Mango, because I know their patterns and fit of models. By the way, in online stores the choice is much richer, for some reason the highest quality items and limited collections are often presented only online.
COVER: Instagram / ash.anna