Saturday, March 03, 2007

Small People, Long Sweaters

PeaceBang attended a day event at a seminary yesterday and is sorry to have to report an epidemic of Long Sweaters On Petite Women happening in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where she spotted at least four women suffering from the ailment.

Lovely people of diminutive stature, please hear me: wearing sweaters that hit you six inches above the knee make you look like a child dressed in mommy's clothing. They diminish you. You don't want that!

Yesterday, I needed to speak to a lovely and earnest person in a position of leadership about an unpleasant tiff I had with a staff person during the conference (who knew that telling someone that taking dozens of flash photos during a lecture is distracting could earn you a vile epithet at a well-regarded school of divinity? Now that's what I call Christian hospitality!). When I approached her, the first thing that crossed my mind was "Oh my. This little girl is totally not going to be able to deal with this."

That's not the first impression you want to make when you're trying to inspire confidence and project mature presence.

Pleated plaid knee-length skirts and cowl-neck sweaters that swath three-quarters of the body is not an outfit that works for clergywomen of any size. There is no other garment on God's green earth that says "Catholic School Girl" or just "School Girl" so instantly as the plaid pleated skirt of any length, and PeaceBang firmly believes that it does not belong in any minister's wardrobe. Yes, I see by doing a Google Image Search that Nanette Lepore makes a gorgeous, fitted plaid skirt, but we're not exactly buying Nanette Lepore, are we, amigas?

As for sweaters, your waist is a fine place for them to conclude their warm envelop of your body.

Petites, it's a constant challenge for you, and I know you know this: if your clothes are too big, you're always going to risk looking like a little kid.

plaid skirt



Anonymous Anonymous said...

Li'l Flava here, checking in from the Fresh Coast.

It's NOT about the long sweaters. It's about all manner of tops being cut longer in general. Even before I left NYC, I saw t-shirts, tank tops, turtlenecks etc. slinking down to mid-butt length. And as a short person, I have despaired having to replace my shorter shirts as they wear out. Now they come too long to tuck in (too much fabric = bunching) and too sloppy to leave out, and knit things are not always easy to alter. The proportions just don't work. So I am PRAYING that this trend will pass soon soon soon.

As for plaid skirts, after 12 yrs of Catholic school, you could not PAY ME to wear anything resembling the uniform: white poly-cotton blouse, fugly plaid pleats, bobby sox/knee highs, and brown or black oxford. It took me years of killer winters to learn how to wear socks again.

3:46 PM  
Blogger PeaceBang said...

PeaceBang is 5'3" and feels your pain. Hey girl. I will call you tomorrow or Monday. Good to hear you.

5:16 PM  
Blogger Ms. Theologian said...

The opposite phenomenon also occurs---I'm tall and can't wear cropped pants or 3/4 inch sleeves because it looks like either my clothes shrunk in the wash or I had an adult growth spurt.

11:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here in Finland it's even worse as we cannot - for love or money - get petite sizes. Why not when there are shorter people here too - but it's a fact.

And I'm not exactly skinny so it's doubly hard :(

I wish the manufacturers would take the fact that we aren't all standard into account somehow!

Frustratedly yours, and 5" shorter than you peacebang!!! Grrr

12:50 PM  
Blogger PeaceBang said...

Love and kisses to Finland!! Wow!!

I am so thrilled to have a reader from so far away!

1:52 PM  
Anonymous mrs. philocrites said...

Lil Flava's experience has been mine- shirts are cut so long now, and it's a lousy trend for shorties and especially shorties with hips, as you end up looking potato-like even if you have a nice waist.

By the way, Philocrites and I want to give a shout-out to the Finnish reader- we visted Finland last summer and had a great time. I have a super cute Marimekko kids' shirt that reminds me of those loooong summer days. But definitely not a country with many petite sizes!

10:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Much though I undersand the idea that extreamly long sweaters make those of us shorter folks look like little kids, (I'm 5'3") I have to remind anyone complaining about long shirts to recall what came before this recent treand, belly shirts. While long shirts can forshorten a person, as someone with a belly I have no interest in showing off, I'm thankfull that I can buy shirts in the pettite section that cover my stomache.

8:19 PM  

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