Since the cold is my biggest enemy, layering has become my best friend. And although I would love to walk around wearing every cozy item I own, I know that’s not logical or aesthetically pleasing, especially being 5’1. I don't know about you, but I end up looking like a snowman when I go overboard with the layering—not as cute as it sounds! These 5 tips will help you master the technique of layering while staying warm and looking chic, no matter how petite you are. ;)

Request cozy layers in your next Short Story box for the cooler months ahead!

Choose thin layers...

By choosing to wear thinner layers, you will be able to keep your shape and really execute the art of layering. Currently, lightweight turtlenecks are a great foundation for me to add on to, perfect for wearing under plaid button-downs and even trendy sweater vests. The possibilities are endless!

Worried that the thin layers won’t do the job? Pay attention to materials like cotton, wool, and flannel fabrics if you need more warmth. Plus, you'll be able to really maximize all the fun winter pieces in your closet by going thin!

photo: Sheryl Luke, 5'2" 

Create shape by accentuating your waist...

As a petite gal, it can be really easy to throw on that one extra layer and feel like you're drowning in clothing. So, how can you prevent that with minimal effort? Highlighting your waist is a great way to provide shape, create balance, and will help your petite frame to not get overwhelmed by all the layers.

There are a few ways you can style your layers for more shape—try tucking a loose sweater or henley into a pair of jeans to help define your petite figure. Belts can also be used to create an illusion of a snatched waist. My go-to is any coat with a tie waist so I can really get that hourglass shape I want.

photo: Shloka Narang, 5'1" 

Whether cropped or long, keep it fitted...

Wearing fitted and tailored outerwear jackets and coats is a sleek way to not feel overly bogged down by excessive layers because these sorts of silhouettes were designed to lay close to your body. As a curvy gal, boxy and oversized cuts can overwhelm my figure. By choosing tailored pieces, I'm able to maximize my existing shape, lengthen my frame, and most importantly, feel my best! Try wearing a cropped, fitted jacket to give the illusion of longer legs.

A long, tailored coat not only elevates any outfit, but the structure hugs you in all the right places, while the vertical line instantly adds more height to your petite stature. The best part? If you invest in a high-quality jacket or coat in a classic fit and color, this wardrobe staple will become one of your go-to's for years to come!

photo: Barbara, 5'3" 

Go monochromatic with oversized pieces...

Extra puffy puffer jackets and oversized bombers carry a bit of extra bulk but are so fun to rock in the cooler months. They're also really on trend right now! Although they might not be the most flattering on a petite frame, try a monochrome moment if you want to try this cozy option.

Wearing a head-to-toe outfit of the same color can make you appear taller, and more put together, and it adds the confidence you need to sport any silhouette. Plus, monochrome is a trend that is here to stay, so you'll be stylish on any occasion. So that your petite frame isn't swallowed up by an oversized puffer, pair it with something more fitted for balance and an extra boost in height!

photo: Jessica Wang

Don't be afraid to experiment...

Staying in your comfort zone can be really easy to do. Don’t be afraid to try new things and get creative, especially when it comes to layering. Those dresses and jumpsuits you loved to wear in fall can easily transition into a winter look by layering with a lightweight sweater or mock neck top.

Throw on a peacoat and booties for a completely new and out-of-the-box outfit, great for a night out with friends or that perfect Instagram photo. Stylist tip—I always find it helpful to take pics of my outfits that I love so I remember how I layered each piece!

photo: Zia Domic 

Looking for layers that are made to fit your petite proportions? Take the style quiz and request your next Short Story box to get started!

Show us how you love to style your layers by tagging us on Instagram (@shortstorybox) or using the hashtag #shortstorybox.

*Cover photo: my voguish diaries