• Red + White (plus how to slim ankle pants & extend the length of a too-short necklace!)

    red_whitetweed

    Ann Taylor red pants (extra 30% off w/ FRIENDSNOV), Uniqueen no. 5 jacket c/o (review), H&M; top
    Coach Sue heels c/o (on sale), Prada Saffiano tote, thrifted chain necklace

    As the days gets colder, one color I am loving for work wear is crisp ivory or cream (also dubbed “winter white”). Unfortunately, that love is more wishful thinking, as I’ve been unable to find any suitable pieces. I would love a petite-friendly cozy crewneck sweater (no super long sleeves and torso) and fitted wool blazer in ivory – if anyone has any recommendations, I’d love to hear it. I seriously considered this option from H&M;, but the mediocre fabric quality and long length served as deterrents.

    Until that ideal blazer can be found, this stark white jacket is the closest thing I have. At the risk of being too festive too soon, I wore it with tomato red pants and finished the look with brown and gold accessories.
    red_whitetweed2
    There were a few adjustments made for this outfit. This gold chain necklace is an old favorite find from Savers thrift store, but the original length is very short, almost like a choker…

    For wearing under a blazer, I find that longer necklaces have a more lengthening effect. Using a smaller chain necklace in the same color as the original one, I made a little “extender.” This is an easy and temporary way to change up the look of your shorter necklaces.
    red_whitetweed5
     The pants in this post also underwent some DIY adjustments. I originally thought they fit well off-the-rack, then reviewed some photos (the camera doesn’t lie). The legs were baggy throughout, and the ankle openings could probably fit two ankles each. The “After” difference is subtle, but in my opinion looks more streamlined. I didn’t want tight hot pants, so just slimmed and tapered the legs ever so slightly.
    red_whitetweed4
    I put off alterations for the longest time due to the cuffs, which slightly complicated things. Here is a quick step-by-step of the process for anyone interested in doing this at home:

    1. If your pants have cuffs: Using tiny scissors or a seam ripper, detach (pardon the spelling error below) the cuff from the seam of the pant leg that you plan on taking-in.

    2. While pants are inside-out, put them on and mark along the seams with fabric chalk how much you want to take in. Keeping pants inside-out, stitch along this line all the way down to the leg opening.

    3. You will need to take-in the cuff separately, just the right amount so it still fits over the newly-slimmed pant leg.

    4. Flip the pants rightside-out and hand-stitch the cuff back onto the pant leg.
    red_whitetweed6

    red_whitetweed1These embossed Sue heels, along with the black leather Sondra bootie, are now 30% or more off. I’m a bootie lover and tried on the Sondra’s in-store – the leather is buttery soft and the heel height is comfortable, but the top opening may be wide for those with scrawny ankles. For sizing reference, I usually wear between 5 and 5.5, and took a 5 in these.
    red_whitetweed3

     

    83 thoughts on “Red + White (plus how to slim ankle pants & extend the length of a too-short necklace!)

    • Janie November 7, 2012 at 6:14 pm

      Thank you so much for explaining how you slimmed your slacks! Seems much more simple than I expected. When you do this for pencil skirts, do you cut the material, or do you leave it sewn in the event you need to let the fabric out? I am asking b/c I am hoping to attempt to slim some skirts for work…

      Btw, I am sort of glad you were 'blocked' by our fellow fashion blogger… she recently posted a picture of a brown ferragamo reversible belt — it gave me a good chuckle, like an inside joke for some reason 🙂 Janie.

    • Anonymous November 7, 2012 at 8:31 pm

      Thanks for the inspiration. You have clever ideas. I love and enjoy your informative blog. Keep it up.

    • PetiteAsianGirl November 8, 2012 at 12:13 am

      Hi there – sorry for the late response! Hope you see this before the sale is over – I got a size 10 and the fit is very boxy, but I wear it. Here's the post showing some photos of the shirt lying flat http://www.extrapetite.com/2012/01/style-in-suitcase-part-1-gingham-and.html

    • PetiteAsianGirl November 8, 2012 at 12:15 am

      Thank you for sharing! I am definitely still interested in a ponte dress to replace the wrinkle prone cotton one I have. Hope you'll end up finding what you need for NYE – sounds beautiful to wear white on that night to bring in peace for the new year.

    • PetiteAsianGirl November 8, 2012 at 12:17 am

      Hi Janie! I should explain that part better…but it depends. If it's an inch or less of excess fabric and if the shape isn't really fitted (the more fitted it is, the more of a difference that extra bulk will make), I will leave in the seams. If it's more than that I will trim it and use a zig zag fabric to try and lock in some of the raw edges, but that may or may not be effective at all and the ends can end up unraveling.

    • PetiteAsianGirl November 8, 2012 at 12:17 am

      Hi – yes, thanks for the reminder! I will say they didn't live up to my expectations, but some women are still very happy with them so I will post my thoughts.

    • PetiteAsianGirl November 8, 2012 at 12:18 am

      Thanks for the tip! I haven't been in WHBM forever but it would make sense they'd have lots of winter white all the time : )

    • PetiteAsianGirl November 8, 2012 at 12:20 am

      I don't think you should worry too much about those "rules" – it's definitely possible to make any color look seasonally appropriate if done right!

    • PetiteAsianGirl November 8, 2012 at 12:22 am

      Hi Lisa! I hope Chicago is treating you well! It was a bit of trial and error for me. I started slimming at the upper hip and then the hips started to pull (most evident in the pockets pulling), so I undid that and re-started lower down the leg, near the upper thighs. Where you take it in depends on how much fabric you're working with. If it's substantial, you'd probabyl need to do inseam and outer seam to keep the pants balanced. I just did less than an inch, so I did outer seam only for ease. Good luck!

    • PetiteAsianGirl November 8, 2012 at 12:28 am

      It's not so bad – just some trial and error…sew a little and try them on, undo stitching, sew a little again and try on again : )

    • PetiteAsianGirl November 8, 2012 at 12:28 am

      Probably too cold!

    • PetiteAsianGirl November 8, 2012 at 12:29 am

      Thanks so much for the sewing pointers, Corinna! You bring up something important that I should've mentioned to avoid lopsided pant legs.

    • PetiteAsianGirl November 8, 2012 at 12:30 am

      Hi Mary! I'm going to paste in an answer from below: it depends. If it's an inch or less of excess fabric and if the shape isn't really fitted (the more fitted it is, the more of a difference that extra bulk will make), I will leave in the seams. If it's more than that I will trim it and use a zig zag fabric to try and lock in some of the raw edges, but that may or may not be effective at all and the ends can end up unraveling.

    • PetiteAsianGirl November 8, 2012 at 12:33 am

      Hi Coco – thanks so much for your comment. I almost always commute in flats and have been on the lookout for professional looking yet "walkable" shoes. Currently I rotate between some old Cole Haan flats with Nike air cushioning, black rainboots, Ferragamo vara low pumps, Stuart Weitzman tall black boots, and tory burch patent (wears better than regular leather) flats. I don't carry water or anything more than what I really need, to keep the purse weight down. It can get very heavy and sometimes I do consider a functional backpack…but haven't resorted to that yet! I usually have just a wallet, small makeup bag, some food, and a laptop. If you like to bring a lot of stuff, nylon totes like Longchamp bags are great at accommodating that without adding extra weight.

    • PetiteAsianGirl November 8, 2012 at 12:36 am

      Thank you, Sunnysider! I did try that one on too and was trying to stay away from acquiring more peplum. It's a lovely jacket for sure.

    • PetiteAsianGirl November 8, 2012 at 12:39 am

      THanks, Annapurna! I didn't even realize they started offering online shopping.

    • PetiteAsianGirl November 8, 2012 at 12:39 am

      Ah, tough choices Mary-Irene! The J.crew ones are so pretty, and these are such a versatile color. For more narrow feet though (not sure if you have them), the AT's are unbeatable in comfort in my humble opinion.

    • PetiteAsianGirl November 8, 2012 at 12:44 am

      Sue – thanks so much for your comment. The same issues affect us regardless of age and style, so I totally feel ya! If you liked the girls Stuart Weitzman boots, I wonder what you'd think of the womens version. I think i got spoiled by the womens first (purchased during an end of season sale) and they are buttery soft and fit my narrow legs better than any boot I've tried. In comparison, the kids version felt short but that may be because of my previously formed expectations! I am so glad they ended up working out for you.

    • PetiteAsianGirl November 8, 2012 at 12:45 am

      Sienna – I am so happy to hear that. Wishing you the best of luck in your career (and the rest of school, if you're still in school : ). Enjoy it!

    • PetiteAsianGirl November 8, 2012 at 12:45 am

      Thank you!

    • PetiteAsianGirl November 8, 2012 at 12:47 am

      Hi Susanlyt – thank you for your comment. I definitely see that many in those forums have positive intentions and only want to share.

      As for the pants, I'll copy in a response from below to Lisa : )
      "Where you take it in depends on how much fabric you're working with. If it's substantial, you'd probably need to do both inseam and outer seam to keep the pants balanced. I just did less than an inch, so I did outer seam only for ease. Good luck!"

    • Jem November 8, 2012 at 3:46 am

      Hi Jean,

      I stumbled upon your blog because I was Googling for petite sized professional suits. Love your blog! For this particular entry, I have to ask you about your hair! Lol. It looks great. It looks shiny and silky and healthy. I was wondering what hair products you use. Did you use a curling iron for the ends of your hair for this shot? What kind of shampoo/hair spray/mousse/etc. do you use?
      I'm also asian. I've got super fine hair and I can't seem to do much with it.

    • Coco November 8, 2012 at 5:37 am

      Thanks for your reply, Jean! I do have a number of Longchamp Le Pliage bags lying around, but I hesitate to carry them as they've become so mainstream where I live. I have to do a lot of commuting throughout each day, so I may to reconsider that. 🙂

    • Chau November 11, 2012 at 1:44 pm

      About the Coach Sue Heels…I have been looking for shoes like these but I haven't been able to find a review on them online. How do you rate them? Can they withstand standing for many hours or are they hard to walk in? Or are they just perfect? Let me know your thoughts because I'd love to catch them while they are on sale. Thanks for posting!

    • Bromeliad November 14, 2012 at 3:41 pm

      Oooooo, I've been looking for a little white blazer for six years. . . . May the Force be with you.

    • QTPie November 16, 2012 at 11:47 am

      I just found your blog and it is AMAZING! I have been frustrated for years not being able to find anything that fits and going to tailors and still not being happy with the results. Would you consider doing a feature where readers send you a picture and you suggest ways that a garment could be tailored?

    • QTPie November 16, 2012 at 11:52 am

      I just found your blog and it is AMAZING! I have been frustrated for years not being able to find anything that fits and going to tailors and still not being happy with the results. Would you consider doing a feature where readers send you a picture and you suggest ways that a garment could be tailored?

    • applejammy November 17, 2012 at 8:46 pm

      Hi Jean, I stumbled upon your blog and am hooked and inspired! I definitely want to give DIY alterations a try, but considering how I hardly know how to sew or work a sewing machine, I should probably leave the advanced stuff to tailors, to start with, anyway.

      Could you do a post on the essential tools necessary when you're just starting off doing your own alterations?

    • jessica November 18, 2012 at 2:13 am

      Ah, winter white. I picked up a cream wool blazer from the thrift shop a couple years ago with the intention of eventually altering it using one of your tutorials … and then never got around to it … but this post makes me think that maybe this is the winter I do it?

      What material is your bright white blazer? And how attached to it are you? If you're feeling daring, you might try dipping it in tea or coffee (Google 'tea dye') to take the bright edge off it. I know I tea dyed something in the past, think it was lace, and it gave the lace a bit of a cream patina. Great for making stuff look vintage-esque, and you could always water down the mix if you just want a faint hue. But if your blazer is a blended natural/synthetic, you might want to look into how blended it is since synthetic doesn't take the tea dyeing. It could either mute the effect (probably what you want), or create odd … uh … patterns … which might be a bit more runway daring than work appropriate?

    • Nadia November 19, 2012 at 7:42 am

      Hi Jean I adore your blog! It's been so very helpful! I've taken your tips on getting the fit right and took a whole bunch of my clothes to get them altered. I had no idea what a difference these little changes could do and realised I've just allowed myself to wear oversized clothes all the time (especially with sleeves much too large and too long)!
      Another thing I love is how well put together you are, even your make-up is lovely- your lip colour choices are always so perfect! I hope you could divert a little and one day make a post on your make-up 🙂

    • Anonymous November 19, 2012 at 7:44 am

      I SECOND THIS!

    • Anonymous February 24, 2013 at 4:20 pm

      Interesting blоg! Is your theme custom made оr did you
      ԁownloаԁ іt from ѕomewhere?
      A dеsign like yours with а few simple adjuѕtements
      would reаllу make my blog ѕhinе. Pleаse
      lеt me know whегe yοu got your design.
      Thanks click through the following website
      Also see my site :: click through the following website

    • Anonymous February 24, 2013 at 4:31 pm

      If some οne ԁeѕіres expеrt view rеgarding blоgging
      and site-building thеn і recommend hіm/her tо viѕit this website, Keep
      up the pleasant jоb. Recommended Website

    Comments are closed.