Review: Allison Izu Premium Petite Denim

A number of you may have heard about Allison Izu Premium Petite Denim from either PetiteLittleGirl, ShortyStories, or AlterationsNeeded. I was really excited to try this brand out for myself. I lugged the heavy package into my apartment, and 8 pairs of petite denim spilled out... sigh, what a tough job I have : )

Before I begin my review, some info about this brand:

- Sizing goes from 000 (triple zero) to 10, and inseams are offered in 27" and 31"
- All jeans are designed in Hawaii and made in California using Italian denim
- Free shipping for orders over $100 and FREE return shipping on your first order. However, a restocking fee may apply if all items are returned. Read here for details.

1. Chinatown Trouser Jean in sz 000/31" inseam, $169 $69
(click any photo to zoom)
Sz 000 leaves a 3/4" waist gap:
Pros: Wonderful fit throughout the hips, tush, and thighs, high quality sturdy dark denim, surprisingly flattering trouser leg fit, elongating stitch seam down the middle of each leg. I think this cut and color is the most universally flattering out of all the styles I tried on.

Cons: Waist gap! What causes this?

Update 8/11/2010  - Helpful response from Allison:
"Waist gaps usually occur because the wearer has a smaller waist compared to her hips or buttocks area (a "curvier" body).  For Allison Izu, i try to design different styles to accommodate different body types, so the "athletic" body (which has a straight waist & hips/buttocks - this is my body, no waist & the flat Asian butt - haha) would work best with the Trouser and UK Zipped.  And a person with a "curvier" body works better with the Hotel St & Bootcut.”

Continue reading for more styles...


2. Hotel St. Skinny Jean in sz 000, 31" inseam, $169 $69
I definitely need a 27" inseam in these, but Allison was temporarily out of stock. But look, ma...NO waist gap:
Pros: These fit like a glove throughout, especially at the waist. They have the same dark, sturdy denim and elongating center seam as the Chinatown jeans (#1).

Cons: Contrast stitching on the back is too flashy for me personally. Zipper front seemed to need some sort of balance (such as the two side pocket zippers shown below in style #3).

3. UK Zipped Super Skinny sz 000/31" inseam, $169 $69
Again, I'd need a 27" inseam but Allison was temporarily out. Big waist gap:
Pros: Edgy triple zipper design and very tapered legs.

Cons: I had really high hopes after seeing the title "super skinny" ... but super skinny these were not. Note the bunching around the tush/upper thighs, plus the unusual elastic patch in the back center of the waist.

4. Panio Low-Rider Boot sz 00/31" inseam, $169 $69
Super snug fit, even after I sized up:
Pros: Slimming low-rise boot cut that runs at least one size smaller than her other styles (perfect for tiny-waisted ladies). Twitter friends may recall what happened when I tried to put on sz 000...! I think these jeans in sz 00 are even too snug for me. I have a little muffin top action going on above : )

Cons: I can't put my finger on it, but I don't like this denim as much as the type from styles #1 and #2. The material is more lightweight and it looks more like a medium blue in photos.

To give you an idea of how small a 000 is in this style, I am wearing the larger of the two sizes below:
Sz 000 in Panio Low-Rise: 12.25" across the waist, 15" across the hips. 
Sz 00 in Panio Low-Rise (fits like sz 000 in the other sizes): 13" across the waist, 15.75" across the hips.

One thing I love about all the petite companies I've worked with is how receptive they are to customer ideas and suggestions. Allison is no exception. Some of my thoughts for her were: improve sizing consistency, more variety in washes, introduce a 29" inseam, and streamline/simplify her website.

Some of you may know that I usually buy jeans from the kids department, but Kelly of AlterationsNeeded has made me keenly aware that many kids jeans are not designed for the curvature of adult bodies, especially in the hips and booty area. I think Allison Izu is a great option for those who want real womens jeans in petite waist & inseam sizes. Interested readers should take advantage of current sale prices plus coupon code (EXTRAPETITE gives you 20% off orders over $98). There are many more styles on the web store including capris, skirts, and tops.

Allison has asked me to keep a style of my choice as a gift from her. I debated between #1, #2, and #4 but I think my favorite are the Chinatown trouser jeans. Which pair do you guys think looks best?

**Disclosure: Denim was provided for review purposes only. 1 pair was gifted courtesy of Allison Izu. As always, this review reflects my honest opinion.**

52 comments:

  1. If the waist didn't gap in the first pair, it would be perfect! I think the it's still my favorite though. My second choice would be #4, but I'm also not in love with the wash. I'm surprised that even the 000 can run so big, and also surprised about sizing inconsistency between styles. And again, you probably have my ideal body proportions lol... I wish I had a smaller waist and curvier bottom! Btw, how high were the heels that you were wearing with the 31" inseam?

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  2. I definitely think #1 looks best. #2 has the odd zipper front and the back pocket design is too loud. #3 looks bunchy in places. #4 is okay but I'm not sure what it is that makes it work less than #1. Thanks for introducing us to new brands!

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  3. I love the 1st pair! Great fit overall. Looks really good on you too.

    #2 fits nice too on you...but i hate those back pockets...kinda too much.

    #3- its okay.
    #4 - very nice too...too bad its too snug in the waist.

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  4. Oh that's no joke about the weight! My arms get heavy from carrying just a few pants around in stores!

    This is a really comprehensive review. I pretty much agree with all your critiques.. I really don't like the design on the butt in #2! Which is a shame, b/c take that out and hemmed, it would be a nice pair of jeans. And, if I were a prospective buyer and looking at this review, I would ask why don't all the size 000 fit the same? Not very consistent, which is unusual to find within the same brand (for instance, Paige size 23 all pretty much fit like a 23). I do like how the bootcut fits over your shoes and doesn't have any scrunching.. that's been the case for all bootcuts I've tried.

    As far as which to keep... I like #1 best, over #4 simply b/c of the wash of the dark denim. I really don't like medium blues. And the leg fits your very nicely and is flattering.

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  5. I have to agree with you on the Chinatown trouser jeans. Having a well placed flare on the leg is really hard to find for petites! Eh, the waist gap is a little unfortunate but nothing a belt can't fix! I'm actually not a huge fan of the zipper, I'm scared that if I eat a huge meal it will bust open to show my britney. rofl.

    Thanks for the review! It makes online shopping a little less mysterious.

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  6. Thank you guys for confirming that #1 is my fave. Petite XXS - I'm wearing 4 inch heels! I think a 29 inseam would be perfect for our height (under 5 feet ish). But if you look at how the 31" inseam fits on Petite Little Girl who is a lil taller than us, it looks much better on her for everyday wear.

    Stephanie - I gotta thank fellow petites like Kelly for introducing me to these brands. I'm always behind in the news!

    Sophia - I completely agree, although sizing inconsistency happens even with the biggest brands we review like Ann Taylor and especially Banana Republic. It's tough I guess! Allison says they are working on it for future styles.

    Hanna - that's an interesting thought...now I wonder how the zipper holds up after a big meal?

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  7. I've never heard of this brand! Thanks for making me aware. I'm a size 23, but even some 23 jeans leave a little gap for me.

    I'm not a big fan of back pocket designs though, so I might have to pass on this company. Shipping to Canada looks a tad bit too much too. :(

    #1 looks really great on you!!
    #2 & #3 - I'm not a fan of the zippers..

    I'd keep #1 if I were you, I'd keep the Chinatown pair. <3

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  8. I love the pair you chose - it really elongates your legs. Looks great!

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  9. Wow, I'm so shocked about that last pair! I'm tinier than you so I bet the 000 of that last one would fit me, but maybe not the rest. I'm torn though because a lot of my jeans actually have a 13" waist as well!

    The trouser jeans are my favorite on you for sure, but the last pair are also a flattering fit. I can find skinnies but I'll admit, bootcut is so tough to find with a correct wash and knee-break, and trousers for petites are nearly impossible.

    Thanks for the review! And can I just say your waist looks omg-tiny in the sideways shots? 0_0

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  10. I've always loved the idea of a trouser jean, but have never been able to find a flattering pair. I'm really impressed with the fit of these Allison Izu's! Too bad about the waist gap, but luckily it's an easy fix for a tailor.

    I'm really curious if the bootcut would fit me in a 000, since I'm a tiny bit smaller than you....hhmmm. It would be kinda fun to have to size up! =)

    PS - Thanks for the shout-outs!

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  11. #1 looks amazing on you!! I think you could definitely get away with the gap if you used a belt. #3 would look nice and trendy if the length and waist were fixed.

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  12. I like #4 the best! If #1 didn't gap it'd be wonderful. These are generally all very nice :)

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  13. I love the Trouser Jeans on you! I tried on a pair today at Gap -fairly good fit all over except for the knees and the length. They were so, soooo long!

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  14. #1 for sure - It's so flattering! I agree that there needs to be a 29inch inseam - the jump from 27 to 31 is quite a jump!

    All the jeans look great though, it's awesome to know that there are jeans for petites! :D

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  15. LOVEEE the first pair!

    I'm not part of the petite bunch but the gaping waistband is almost always a problem for me! Why is that so? :(

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  16. The trouser jeans look really good on you! Good pick.

    I'm not sure that I like the zippers or back-pocket detailing used on these jeans though. They seem to make the jeans less classic looking. Being a mid-20-something, I want to focus on buying jeans that I know I can wear to nice dinners or even casually out without looking too flashy. I browsed her site and aside from the trousers you picked out, I'd only consider checking out the Kolohe Skinny Jean.

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  17. girl, that waist gap is caused by your itty bitty waist! i realize it's a pain when it comes to trying to find stuff that fits, but i'm still dying of jealousy over here!

    anyway, these jeans look amazing on you. i esp love the first pair (even w/ the gap). the idea of jeans w/ a 27" inseam makes me happy. i think i'd be able to wear flats with those suckers. need to give these a whirl.

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  18. Oooh great buys on these jeans! Wow I can't believe you're a triple O! I'm especially liking the third pair with the zips but too bad they're not as "skinny" as they claim :(

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  19. I love these jeans, thanks for the review. I personally loved the Chinatown Trouser Jean on you.

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  20. I love the Chinatown Trouser Jeans on your. They are hands down the best fit and they really elongate your legs, you look like you're at least 5'6"-7"! I don't know what causes that waist gap either, I used to have that problem but after I gained weight and filled out, now I have to worry about muffin tops lol. I do like the fit of the second pair as well. Having both pairs allow you to have both the skinny leg and flare/boot cut leg look, which will be great for the fall.

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  21. I definitely agree that a 29" should be introduced. Also, her skinnies should be a little shorter - they often are in other brands!

    I'm still working on the pencil skirt review. Been crazy-busy with wedding stuff!

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  22. Great review! I really like the look of #1 on you. I did not try these on for my reviews therefore I can't tell if they would fit me or not. Besides the gap, they fit pretty nicely. I personally like the bootcut. I agree with you these bootcut are tiny. I had to size up to 0. Too bad about those skinnes. Skinny jeans supposed to flaterring shorter legs but I haven't found the ones that I truly love. I think you should keep #1

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  23. Agree with Angie. "I like #4 the best! If #1 didn't gap it'd be wonderful."

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  24. I have to agree with most others and go with #1 as my fave. I hate that it has a waist gap, but they look so great otherwise!

    I'm curious if this brand will fit me! I might just have to try it out :)

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  25. I like #1 the best outside of the waist gap.

    roxy
    http://roxybeautyblog.blogspot.com/

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  26. #1 and 4 are my favorites. #1 definitely gives off a very sophisticated feel on you. #4 is more of a causal wear. Will we get to see the other 4 styles? :)

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  27. Like everyone else said DEFINITELY #1! This is usually my favorite cut jean. I think for me the 31" inseam would be perfect! I might have to bite the bullet on the shipping costs to Canada and order myself a pair!

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  28. #1 and #4 definitely look great! But of course the color is better for #1. I often find that trouser pants make me look even shorter, but you wear them with heels so that doesn't seem to be a problem - definitely lengthening.

    I like jeans from Abercrombie (kids) and Pac Sun, occassionally from Strawberry.

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  29. WoW! nice to know they are 000 size for petites.Like others comments #1 is my favorite cut, and it looks great on you. #4 is also very nice. I actually don't mind a bit of waist gap, I usually buy the 00 at Gap, 23-24 True Religion, 23-24 size paige, and 24 hudson and they all leave a little waist gap for me. I like it that way, they feel more comfortable for me.:)

    Thanks for the great review!

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  30. I say go with #1. That was my overall favorite fit on you. I love trouser jeans. :)

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  31. i like 1 and 4, but i think 4 looks really great on you. it's more fit around the thigh and knee area compared to 1. the length is also better on 4 since more of your peep-toe shoe shows. the color is nice in 1 but i find some darker denims look cheaper than mid-tone denims. i choose 4!

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  32. LOVE those jeans! I'm sure if you wore a belt, you could close that gap! :)

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  33. That is really a shame about #3...those zippers make them so unique! Way too baggy in the thighs. :(

    Not a fan of the lone zipper on #2, and the pocket detail bothers me, as well. It looks super cute from the side, but not when you look at the whole picture...too much of a gap.

    I can't decide between #1 or #4. Is it too much of a bother to try #4 in a 0? Or you could just wear them with loose-fitting shirts. :)

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  34. I love your blog!! have been following a few of the petite bloggers lately and you guys are a god send for me when i buy clothes!

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  35. I am reviewing these jeans too! I am doing a review for September--Allison told me there was a review for August now I know who!!! Hehe! The jeans look fantastic on you! I love #1 and #4 on you!

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  36. i really love you blog! It gives such great fashion advice :)

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  37. Like most of the comments, I really like #1 the best, despite the gap :)

    I have seen the styles of zippers on #2 and #3 around, and I really don't like them. I think they bring too much attention to something that's just supposed to keep things closed... :P

    #4 looks good, too! Too bad I can't feel the denim through you blog.

    Also wondering - would these jeans be too long without your heels?

    Thanks again for the great review!

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  38. Love #1! pity about the waist gap!!

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  39. like everyone said..the first one looks great on you!

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  40. Absolutely LOVE #1! What about wearing a belt with it? I get the "waist gap" too, even though I wear kids' jeans... and just solve it with my only belt! :)

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  41. I like the 1st~
    Love you cami too. where can I get the similar one you think? I always have a hard time to get fit cami:<

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  42. I love the trouser jeans! I think it's the most flattering out of all the others. The waist gap I think you can fix via alterations or a belt.

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  43. Thanks guys for your opinions and comments! I kept #1...different from any style I own.

    PetiteGorgeous- whoops, I should've clarified I didn't get 8 styles. I got these 4 styles in different sizes.

    Jen - I meant to write something when I posted these pics and saw that I almost looked anorexic. Disclaimer: I'm wearing one of my theory "shaping" tanks which are one size fit all and UNBELIEVABLY tight. I don't know how anyone bigger than XXS can wear it. But it "shapes" all right...I look like one of those ralph lauren photoshop debacles from the side! Eek! Btw, I measured the 000's by pulling the waistband taught and then measuring. Maybe that makes a difference?

    Yan - I get all my other tanks from H&M, and a few camis from F21 (they are $2 or so, dirt cheap). These are from the Theory outlet for about $25 (retail for a crazy $110 or something!).

    AspiringMinimalist - they'd be too long on me w/o heels. But I wonder how a 27" would look on me? If you are any taller than me though, the 31" would not be bad with heels.

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  44. i think you made a wonderful choice!! these jeans look really nice, never heard of them, glad to hear of a petite friendly jeans company for adults!

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  45. I love the color of the first and third pair. I have a pair of AGs that are really dark, but are about 20" too long for me. I have had them for about five years; they're currently sitting in my closet with the tags still on. LOL!

    Thanks for sharing this brand with us shorties!

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  46. oh wow, thanks for these reviews! i've never heard of this brand before, but i'm glad to hear that more companies are coming out with petite sizes since i'm a huge denim fan hehe i agree, the first look is my favorite, too:)

    TheOwlsCloset.blogspot.com

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  47. PAG-I am glad you picked #1. I think that looked the best on you. #4 came in a close second, but despite its fabulous fit overall, there are some odd wrinkles in the back knee. Does anyone know what causes those types of wrinkles in the back of the knee? I have turned down so many Banana republic pants because I find those same wrinkles happen there, too.

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  48. I have my review up on blogger and on YouTube. I gave you a shoutout in my video and provided a link for my subscribers to visit your blog. You had an amazing post on these jeans! :)

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  49. I can see your underwear in one of the pics, hahahahahaha!!!

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  50. By the way, you have a really nice ass.

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  51. I like to write the contents of the moderators, welcome to my home to see you ~! My address is: true religion uk.

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