Express Petites // Spring Trench Coat + Pink Lace Dress

spring pink lace dress petite fashion blog

Whenever a brand launches a new petites collection, it’s a cause for a little celebration in my book! Express introduced their petites line in January, which I had been eagerly anticipating. The brand had surfaced back on my radar in recent years with some great denim offerings in “short” inseams (I’ve never gotten as much rave feedback from you guys on an item as I did with these jeans!), versatile basics, and several pieces in elegant, dressier styles. If you look beyond the edgier styling of the models online, a lot of their pieces can be worked into a classic and age-appropriate wardrobe.

express petite lace dress trench coat review

Before partnering with Express petites on a post, I wanted to try on a wide range of their new items including bottoms, jackets, tops and dresses.

Currently, sizing for Express petites ranges from 0 – 12p, and XS – XLP. XSP is best suited for those who usually wear a 0 to 2p. For smaller-framed ladies who typically need xxs or 00 petite, I was told this size is not yet produced (with the exception of one skirt) but might be introduced down the road.

spring fashion pink lace cocktail dress petite style

Everyone’s proportions are unique, but I found the petite dresses and tops to work well for someone my height, whereas the pants and denim may be better suited for someone with longer legs. As you can see above, this lace dress in 0P is pretty petite-friendly with smaller armholes, a higher waistline, and a length that hits above my knees. To give you an idea of how their 0P runs, this dress measures 13″ across the waist and 15″ across the armpits. The petite denim and pants I tried on are a few inches long on me with inseams ranging from 28″ for ankle-cut jeans, to 30″ for long pants. At 5′ tall, I know that I’m on the shorter end of the petite range so this isn’t unexpected.

express petites classic trench coat review

Here’s a few pieces in particular that I wanted to point out from new petites collection:

High waisted pleated midi skirt – The one style that was available in xxsp! If you’re looking for a classic black pleated skirt that is lightweight and lined, this one fit me nicely. You can dress it up for work or down for everyday wear. The waistband is elasticized and stretchy, sitting higher at my natural waist, and the length was closer to knee-length on me instead of midi.

Cutaway blazer jacket – I first tried this on in a regular size xxs, and the overall fit was very petite-friendly even in regular sizing. My only adjustment needed on xxs regular was to slim the sleeves, an alteration that I get on many of my blazers due to personal preference. If you can snag your size in petites, the proportions are shrunken down even further for a more cropped blazer (a length great for pairing with dresses and high-waisted skirts).

Classic trench coat – I’ve mentioned this one a few times before, but it’s a piece that I really hope they’ll offer in a full range of petite sizes. The XSP I received is 1 size up from what I usually wear, so it’s slightly wide in the arms and torso for me, and the belt loops fall an inch below my waist. The quality is very good in my opinion (especially for outerwear at this price point) with a full lining and a medium-weight outer material that feels water-resistant. One reviewer found it to be too stiff, but the material is actually what I like the most. It travels nicely, is wrinkle-resistant, and feels comparable to the fabric in some high-end trench coats.

As Express expands their petites collection, I’m hopefully that they’ll add xxs/00p for the customers who need it, along with more wardrobe staple styles like the aforementioned trench coat and blazer! I made sure to communicate that, along with the wishful suggestion in general of more stock in smaller sizes (which always seem to sell out first). Although I know inventory is ultimately driven by demand and sales data, I always appreciate it when a brand listens with open ears to customer feedback!

If you’ve tried on or own anything from Express petites, I’d love to hear your thoughts!

spring wedding pink lace dress petite women outfits

Thank you to Express for partnering on this post.

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Leave a Comment


  1. Jean wrote:

    Hi there – I'll be posting lots of casual spring outfits in the coming weeks! And thank you to the commenter above…the Instashop tab is a compilation of a lot of quick looks, many of which are spring-ready!

    Posted 3.20.17 Reply
  2. Jean wrote:

    That's a bummer! I know you have had the same issue before and I really don't know why that might be.

    Posted 3.20.17 Reply
  3. Jean wrote:

    Hi Lisa! Thank you for your sweet comment. I really appreciate it!

    I'm wearing Stila liquid lipstick in "Patina" here. It's definitely one of my all-time favorites and doesn't apply or feel icky like you might expect a liquid lipstick to sometimes. It has good staying power, and a tube lasts me for ages. If you're just branching out to colors, I'm not sure what your skin tone is but I absolutely love MAC "velvet teddy" for everyday wear. It gives the lips very natural-looking color!

    Posted 3.20.17 Reply
  4. Jean wrote:

    Always a fun idea to wear midi styles as a maxi! One of the perks of being short..

    Posted 3.20.17 Reply
  5. Jean wrote:

    Hi Meg! Sorry I can't be of much help as I haven't tried too many brands for activewear! I mostly wear Zella leggings in their midi length (perfect on me without alterations) or have hemmed my other pairs in their regular length, "slim fit live in" style. I do not know how they'd feel during hot yoga though. My friend also likes Old Navy petites activewear.

    Posted 3.20.17 Reply
  6. Jean wrote:

    Hi there! I love ASOS' beachwear section. They make petites in certain styles, but with the shorter dresses and cover-ups I can get away with regular. They are online only and ship from the UK, but usually pretty quickly and seamlessly with easy returns.

    Posted 3.20.17 Reply
  7. Jean wrote:

    The arms here are not restricting, but you may need to size up to accommodate the bust area (although the waist might then be too loose)

    Posted 3.20.17 Reply
  8. Jean wrote:

    Hi there – if you usually wear regular sizing, then typically it is recommended to go one size up when trying petites. If petites is available I almost never try the regular sizing, so unfortunately can't speak to the comparable fit between the two. I am five feet tall though and this dress is on the shorter end on me, just fyi!

    Posted 3.20.17 Reply
  9. Jean wrote:

    Hi Judy – do you already own one of their original shirts? If so, the petites quality is exactly the same but in smaller proportions. If you mean their shirts in general, they differ in material and weight based on the various styles. Their most popular shirt is the portofino which is a thinner, lightweight blouse that drapes nicely. Not sure how tall you are, but in regular sizing it's a little too big on me and lower-cut, so I hope they'll make more of that one in petites.

    Posted 3.20.17 Reply
  10. Anonymous wrote:

    If you go to the 'Instashop' tab of this blog, you'll find some ideas for casual Spring outfits.

    Posted 3.18.17 Reply
  11. mybeautrip wrote:

    This lace dress is so beautiful!

    Posted 3.18.17 Reply
  12. Mizeats wrote:

    Hi Jean, I too would love to know the lipstick color. It's such a flattering shade on you. Thanks!

    Posted 3.18.17 Reply
  13. Dieter wrote:

    Hey Jean, I would love some ideas for casual spring outfits.

    Posted 3.18.17 Reply
  14. This dress is so romantic, I love how you styled it!

    Posted 3.18.17 Reply
  15. Meg Vaidya wrote:

    Thanks Col! I will give Athleta a try too.

    So far, I am yet to find any workout clothes that have matched the quality of Lululemon and Free People- but this is specific to hot yoga workouts.

    Posted 3.18.17 Reply
  16. Petra wrote:

    Thank you for sharing your insights on these Express items! I have been purchasing Express clothing for years. I am 5'3" and the 00 short pants fit me well as well as jackets in xxs. I also would like to see Express offer the smaller sizes in the petite line.

    Posted 3.18.17 Reply
  17. mayu from japan wrote:

    I do love to purchase things from Express, but I seem to have no permission to access Express website 🙁
    Google Chrome shows "Access Denied" on any request to Express website.

    Posted 3.18.17 Reply
  18. MelDoReMi wrote:

    Same here! Please bring us xxsp/ 00p!

    Posted 3.17.17 Reply
  19. Lisa wrote:

    Yet another great look! Thank you, Jean, for your consistently detailed reviews. I stumbled across your blog when looking up reviews on Hunter boots for petites a couple years ago and have been following since. Now that I seem to have settled at a steady post-baby weight I am trying to rebuild my wardrobe and I while I am primarily a lover of classic pieces, I have been inspired by many of your looks from new (to-me) designers. Keep up the great work, and I wish you continued success! Hopefully we'll be able to visit some of the beautiful vacation spots you've blogged about someday – Napa is on my radar…

    Quick question about this post: can you share what lip color you're wearing? I tend not to wear anything but basic lip balm, but that shade is so pretty! Maybe it's time to branch out a bit 🙂 Thanks!


    Posted 3.17.17 Reply
  20. Melissa wrote:

    I believe she posted the shoes on the post prior to this. Pretty sure they are from Ann Taylor. Hope this helps =)

    Posted 3.17.17 Reply
  21. Col wrote:

    Athleta has a selection of items– pants and tops– in XXS. Tights come in lots of lengths. (Shirts tend to run long, unfortunately.)

    Posted 3.17.17 Reply
  22. Jillian wrote:

    I haven't tried the petites line yet but I've been having a love affair with Express recently. I will say that I am SO with you on the models. I often don't find much I like online because of that but if I go to an actual store I end up with armfuls of clothes.

    Liner Lipstick Life

    Posted 3.17.17 Reply
  23. I love this lace dress! So many great petite / 00 options at Express- I'm wearing a skirt from them now.
    Julia・Little Miss Haute Couture

    Posted 3.17.17 Reply
  24. Anonymous wrote:

    Land's End petite. Good selection too!

    Posted 3.17.17 Reply
  25. Anonymous wrote:

    Much cuter than the picture and a perfect MAXI dress for petites!

    Posted 3.17.17 Reply

    This dress is much cuter on person! A perfect MAXI for petites.

    Posted 3.17.17 Reply
  27. The prettiest pink lace dress and so trendy with the trench! Hope you have a fabulous weekend 🙂
    xx Tess | Sequins are the New Black

    Posted 3.17.17 Reply
  28. I also need the xxsp/00p. Thanks for this post. I did not know Express had introduced a petite line and I have overlooked them for years as they have some good styles, but always too big for me.

    Posted 3.17.17 Reply
  29. Kirsten wrote:

    I like that they added petite but I thought they already had it? There stuff is usually pretty big. It's unfortunate that they would add petite but not 00. It leaves a lot of people out.

    -Kirsten // pork & cookies

    Posted 3.17.17 Reply
  30. Kirsten wrote:

    Another vote from me, otherwise their petites line is useless to me.

    -Kirsten // pork & cookies

    Posted 3.17.17 Reply
  31. Anonymous wrote:

    Another vote from me too! I need the xxsp/00p too!

    Posted 3.17.17 Reply
  32. Meg Vaidya wrote:

    You look lovely in Pink Jean!

    Thank you for all the outfits and posts you curate for fellow petite professional women out there- your fit/size advice is my go to before buying clothes online at AT and J Crew. 🙂

    A quick request for you- I know you cater mostly to professional attire, but would you consider doing a post or two about workout clothes for petites. (I found out that Lululemon would hem their tights for you, but later realized that the hemmed length would bunch at your skinny ankles :/)

    Thank you very much!

    Posted 3.17.17 Reply
  33. This is such a pretty dress! I absolutely love that color for spring. X

    Posted 3.17.17 Reply
  34. lifeasfour wrote:

    Hi Jean, I have been a fellow petite reader of your blog for a while and love it! I am searching for a bathing suit cover up and was hoping you could help. I have searched high and low without luck to find a coverup that doesn't swallow my 5'1 frame. They are either too long, too loose, or look super cheap. Do you have any suggestions? It seems to be the one thing left out of the petite market!
    PS, I live in Charleston-so glad you love our city!

    Posted 3.17.17 Reply
  35. The silhouette and color of that dress are just beautiful!

    Posted 3.17.17 Reply
  36. I love this. I've never paired a trench coat with a dress before cos I'm always scared it'd swamp my petite form, but it works well on it. Maybe I'll try it too.

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

    Posted 3.16.17 Reply
  37. LorenQ1 wrote:

    I forgot to mention, I'm petite but busty and my arms are not skinny 🙁 Do you recommend I size up on this dress?

    Posted 3.16.17 Reply
  38. LorenQ1 wrote:

    Jean, I find that I have to go up a size when I go with petite, is that also true for you? What about this dress? Would I have to do that?

    Posted 3.16.17 Reply
  39. JUDY wrote:

    Hi Jean, can you comment on the sizing and quality of express petite vs original shirts? They don't ship to my country but I would love to try their stuff out especially for workwear pieces. Thanks!!

    Posted 3.16.17 Reply
  40. Camille S. wrote:

    Love the dress! I've been looking for petite-friendly dresses for a couple of summer weddings this year – the dress looks great, but unfortunately they don't stock 0P online 🙁 Fingers crossed they'll stock online soon!

    Posted 3.16.17 Reply
  41. Salt wrote:

    Those shoes are so lovely!! Will you be posting about those soon, or have you already? I'm a sucker for suede.

    Posted 3.16.17 Reply
  42. Tynka. wrote:

    wow! lovely dress<3

    Posted 3.16.17 Reply
  43. I've been attempting to snag this dress for weeks but it hasn't come in a 0p online yet! Looks so great on you, Jean!

    Posted 3.16.17 Reply
  44. Mizeats wrote:

    You look pretty in the pink lace dress! I also love the midi skirt. Both pieces are so feminine and pretty!

    Posted 3.16.17 Reply
  45. Anonymous wrote:

    Can I ask what your measurements are and if you ended up keeping the regular size?

    Posted 3.16.17 Reply
  46. Anonymous wrote:

    Did you like the short length of the petite trench? I did not, I wanted slightly more length. I'm also 5'0" Oddly the petite size was too short for me but too big in the shoulders / arms, while the smallest regular size fit right in the shoulders / arms and was longer.

    Posted 3.16.17 Reply
  47. Anonymous wrote:

    One more vote for xxsp/00p, please! Strength in numbers, right? : )
    I'd love to be able to get that trench in my size.

    Posted 3.16.17 Reply
  48. Posting as I'm sure Express is following…..I'm really hoping for xxs and 00 sizing soon as nearly everything I've tried at Express is too big for me. I think thier dresses and rompers are adorable but sadly too big. Thank goodness for reliable xxs and 00 sizing from Banana Republic – without that I wouldn't have a thing to wear!

    Posted 3.16.17 Reply
  49. Beautiful dress 😉

    Posted 3.16.17 Reply
  50. La Bijoux Bella | by mia wrote:

    Simply a beautiful look for Spring. Love the soft lace feel paired with a confident and edgy trench. Simply beautiful! 🙂

    ��LA BIJOUX BELLA�� | BY MIA | A Creative Lifestyle Blog

    Posted 3.16.17 Reply

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