The oversized trend has come and gone over the years, but one thing remains the same—shorties struggle with it. Something that seems so simple (just size up?) isn’t really that simple for petite ladies. But it can be done! The key? Make sure you’re extra mindful of both your style and silhouette choices when attempting an oversized look. This way, the overall outfit clearly looks intentional and on purpose. The last thing you want is to look sloppy, so it’s about more than just sizing up. Once you’ve gotten familiar with what looser styles look best on your petite frame, putting together a look that incorporates oversized clothing without drowning you will come easy! To help you visualize some ways you can approach this trend, I’ve pulled inspiration from a petite oversized trendsetter—Ariana Grande, 5’.
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Keep it Casual
Oversized styling most often goes hand in hand with some sort of streetwear vibe. It’s usually more casual because let's face it, most people prefer to be more polished when it comes to work and special occasions—for good reason! When clothing is more fitted, you tend to look more refined and put-together. So skip the baggy clothes when it comes to the office or a nice dinner with the in-laws and leave the fun and trendy oversized styling to the weekends, casual nights out, hanging out with friends, or a day out with bae!
Short Story Tip: To avoid looking sloppy or like you just didn’t care about what you were throwing on, have fun with styling! Elevate these more laidback looks with sleek jewelry, styled locks or even heels! Yes, heels can be casual too!
Step Out of Your Size
In order to get that oversized fit and look you have in mind, you’re most likely going to need to go up by 1 or 2 sizes, depending on the design and silhouette of the garment. Sizing up on what are intended to be fitted pieces will usually lead to an awkward fit. You know how the bust darts of a fitted top creates curves to follow the shape of your chest? You can even see this when it's just on the hanger. Now picture that same curved shape, but far away from your body. Instead of a relaxed, flowing fit, the bust darts will pull the fabric in at awkward places from the size increase, and design details and seams will no longer fall where they were intended to. A curved bust shape sitting at your stomach isn't the most flattering—yikes!
Short Story Tip: Sizing up for an oversized fit is best done with pieces that already have a loose, straight or boxy silhouette. Design details, like bust darts and princess seams, are added in to bring the garment closer to the body, which is the exact opposite of what you’re trying to do.
Bit of Balance
Because it’s so easy for our petite frames to get swallowed up by too much fabric, you want to make sure you’re creating some balance when incorporating an oversized piece into your outfit. If you’re just getting your feet wet with this trend, start out by pairing something oversized with something fitted or slimming for balance—an oversized sweatshirt + tight OTK boots is probably Ariana’s most known combo, aside from sleek high ponytails and cat ears! Mix & match oversized and fitted pieces to not just see what flatters you most, but also what you feel good in most. I’m 5’3” and don’t just love an oversized sweatshirt + baggy jeans outfit. More importantly, I feel confident in it! Some petites would go running for the hills just thinking about throwing on an outfit like that, but it works for me because it mirrors my bit of tomboy style and personality.
Short Story Tip: Make sure you don’t lose yourself in the trend! Mold it to what makes you feel good because at the end of the day, that’s what matters most. Stay true to you and it'll even make you stand a little bit taller!
Show Off Some Shoulder
Covering up your petite body with a ton of fabric is usually a no-go if you’re trying to elongate and flatter your figure. We’ve talked about exposing some skin a lot on our blog and this is especially important when going for an oversized look. To avoid being swallowed by the bagginess, think about the different ways you can incorporate some skin to open up your body a bit more. If you’re wearing an oversized layering piece, go classic Ariana and simply let a shoulder get some attention, or wear the piece open to show off your chest and/or waist if wearing it with a cami or crop top.
Short Story Tip: When wearing oversized tops or layering pieces, style your hair up or out of the way to expose more of your neck. This adds more skin to the shoulder styling tip and is even more helpful if you're opting out of showing off your chest or shoulders.
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*cover photo credit: Pinterest