Trouser Troubles

spring business casual work outfit petite fashion

Sunglasses + Crepe pants sz 0P (waist altered) c/o Talbots, Manolo BB heels sz 35, Burberry trench (current option), Ann Taylor sweater xxsp c/o (regular), Prada bag

How are pants always such a challenge? Let me count the ways… waist. Butt. Rise. Inseam. Width. So many places that have to fit just right, and I’m not even factoring troublesome fabrics that are either see-through or wrinkle-prone. And so finding flattering trousers that fit off the rack has always been a style challenge, especially for short-legged gals. J.Crew and WHBM (namely their slim style) petite ankle pants do work well for me, but I’d love to have more options in different cuts, silhouettes and seasonal colors! This outfit here is from a few weeks ago, but I received some questions on the pants so wanted to share some fit info (plus review a similar alternative).

talbots pink trouser pants ann taylor stripe sweater petites

Just to show how one cut does not flatter all, take a look at the stock photo for these Talbots crepe pants. Nevertheless, I gave them a try and found them to be classic-cut trousers made of a beautiful crepe suiting material. They’re fully lined with a tiny bit of stretch, and the material drapes nicely and is not wrinkle-prone. Now if only Talbots made extended petites sizing! I had to get the waist taken in like I do with most bottoms, but note this alteration can run on the costlier side given the side zipper and lining.

express soft wide leg trouser pants short

Express wide-leg soft pants sz 00 Short (2 colors); clipped back 2″ on the right picture

I also tried on a similar, more affordable pair from Express that have positive reviews and come in a “short” inseam. True to their name, these pants are made of a soft and very stretchy crepe material that allllmost feel as good as PJs. Compared to the Talbots pair, these are unlined, wider-cut in the legs, and the material feels a little more casual and is machine-washable (and oh, there’s side pockets). Unfortunately these also fit roomy and a little long on me in size 00 short, even with 4″ heels on. It baffles me, as I can easily find a fitted pair of jeans at stores like Express and LOFT, but their trousers in the same label size seem to run very differently!

Talbots Wide-Leg Pants size 0 Petite: 13″ across the waist, 17.5″ across the hips, 9.5″ rise, 29″ inseam, 8.25″ across bottom leg opening.

Express Wide-Leg Pants size 00 Short: 13″ across the waist, 19.5″ across the hips, 9.5″ rise, 30″ inseam, 11″ across bottom leg opening.

spring office wear ideas petite fashion blog boston

I’ve mentioned this Ann Taylor sweater a few times now – it’s a nice basic updated with on-trend sleeves, but with subtle enough flares that you don’t have to worry about them going out of style. My usual size fit fine off the rack, but even better after I machine washed and dried it (it shrunk down about half a size). Unfortunately, there is a major price difference right now between the petite and regular sizing, but hopefully the petite will go on sale soon, too.

spring work clothing wide leg pants petite style

What is your go-to store for trousers that fit? Or are you your tailor’s best customer? : )

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