The Verdict: J.Crew Petite size 0 (P0)

**This post has an update. View the dress post-alterations here.**

I was very excited for the arrival of my J.Crew goodies. My expectations were low, after the comments and input from this post, but needed to see for myself and put my curiosity to rest. I also wanted to see whether the fit could be correct by alterations, and if so, for how much $.

First up, the Terra Paisley dress in 0P. On the J.Crew model (left) and on me (right):

Side and back view:
Measurements: 16 inches across from armpit to armpit, 13.25 inches across the waist.

The fit was loose and blah, but it was not swimmingly huge like I had feared. A petite lady 1 or 2 sizes up from me could probably fit perfectly into this dress.  

When I took this to my tailor, she said it needed alterations in the following areas: straps shortened so that the neckline could move up (it was a little gaping), sides taken in, plus hem shortened slightly. Because there was a side zip and side pockets, she would have to take it in via the two back darts instead of the sides, thus shifting the symmetry of the dress. 
Loose arm holes:
Waist and torso about an inch or two too big:
Because this dress was silk and fully lined, the alterations were costly - about $50 total. With my discount this went down to $40, but still a lot for me to fork over for one dress that was pretty expensive to begin with. The dress was final sale (silly me) so I ended up going for the alterations. To make myself feel better about spending all that cash, I returned my Theory Chanesa Dress, since it was still hanging in my closet with tags and all.

Click "Read More" to see the fit of a J.Crew P0 blouse.

I've had my eye on this pretty little thing since months back. It comes in ten gorgeous colors and two of my favorite shades are on sale (plus EXTRA30). I gave into ordering after I discovered that it was not part of final sale, and thus, returnable.
The misty lavender (poor ruffles are crushed from shipping):
Same problems as the dress. Loose arm holes:
and wide torso:
Measurements: 16" from armpit to armpit, 18" across the bottom, and 23" length. Well, I was warned by a number of readers. J.Crew's silk blouses really are generously sized. My mom who is a Petite 4 could probably fit into this top. I was quoted about $25 to have this blouse slimmed, since it is 100% silk. It's not worth a total of $80 to me, so...back it goes!

Final Verdict: P0 sleeveless (sleeves add a new dimension of difficulty!) items work for someone my size with the appropriate alterations. Sorry to ladies more petite than I am - no hope for you and the Crew! If I didn't care about eating well, or higher education, or buying a house or a car, then I would splurge more often on J.Crew P0 clothing and shell out for alterations. In my opinion, the design and fabrics, prints, and colors are just a notch above WHBM, Banana Republic or Ann Taylor. 

PS - Just picked up the silk paisley dress, and the alterations turned out even better than expected (view it post-alterations here). This is bad news for my wallet, now that I know the potential of J.Crew pieces after a trip to Hemmingway ...
J.Crew at ShopStyle


  1. hi there! found your blog through your comment on "The Owl's Closet" blog. Love the concept since there are so many petite Asian girls (myself included) out there that can relate with clothes not fitting the way we want/need them to. You're doing well building your wardrobe, I love your sense of style. Great blog, keep up the work! xo

  2. I bet the dress is great post-alterations--colors look perfect for you.

    If it's any consolation, the J Crew fit tends to be boxy so you'd probably be paying for alterations even if you were larger. Hence the frequent use of belts when they style, ha.

    Did I miss how the W-00 shorts you ordered fit?

  3. oh my! The arm holes def. make the difference in chic vs. dumpy look! Love your choices though...too bad they didn't fit too well!

    BTW, did you manage to look into any susanna monaco pieces?

  4. aww sucks when clothes don't fit snug !

  5. Just to try to help you save some money, I am exactly a BR/AT 00p, got the JCrew perfect pencil skirt (in cinnamon) in 00p and it cost about $40 to alter. The waist needed to be nipped in, and both sides contoured in more. Since I'm low on skirts that aren't black or grey, I went for it. I wish BR and AT would take a cue from JCrew on color!

  6. Oh wow, I just bought that same Jcrew top in lavender(silk Frances top right?). Now I'm hoping I'm not swimming in it (I bought a P2). I hate how Jcrew sizing is all over the place (and the stores never have a good petite selection either).
    Can't wait to see the dress post alterations!

  7. I think that a bit busy for us petite ladies. But I do like the colors.

  8. for me J Crew petite fits weird. I like their styles but the sizing is crazy, it's like they don't use a petite fit model and just try to shrink their regular sizes.

    Can't wait to see the altered dress on you!

  9. Nicole- thanks you : )

    Vix- how funny, the shorts were so unmemorable that I took pics and forgot about it. They'll pop up sometime next week in a random post, haha. And yes I did notice they use a ton of skinny belts when styling their tops and sweaters!

    N - Ah, I hate baggy arm holes : ( And I actually don't see SM around very much. However, I did find a VERY cute SM sweetheart neckline dress w/pockets on sale at Bloomies, but none left in my size and it was still quite pricey for a casual dress!

    Anon- agree completely - if BR and AT and WHBM (which will never happen lol) offered more colors, textures, and prints. That's nuts you had to spend $40 to alter that skirt! I think you are being overcharged!

    Nukem- uh oh! i have a feeling P2 will be swampy on you, but cross my fingers

    Jackie - the print IS very busy and I would normally not go for full-body print. But I hope post-alterations will change your mind : )

  10. For me, JCrew petite line is not for petite girls. I also agree with Tiffany that JCrew sizing is very crazy, especially for pants and denims. I ordered Chino in 00P, and it's soooooo big. I have to return it :-) However, JCrew coats are not bad for petite.

  11. NJ - I'm gonna scratch J.Crew pants/shorts off my list from now on. That's too bad because they have some really cute straight-legged pants. I haven't tried their jackets yet, and am scared because potential alterations would be so expensive on a coat!

  12. the terra paisley dress is reallyyy cute. i love the detailing on it

    xx lue

    ps. i think you would look so cute in a slouchy sweater, esp since you're so petite!

  13. FINALLY, a fashion blog for "my size" clothes. I love your blog!!
    -- fellow xs/xxs person


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