How to dress when you're a tall girl
By Rosie Boydell, 13 May 2016 • 7:00am
At an above-average height of 5’9”, I am often exasperated by the poor offerings of ‘tall’ clothing on the high street. It seems to me that if you’re in the taller lady category, you’re also supposedly frumpy, wide and have little-to-no taste in clothing (which is just not true). There is, however, an abundance of long shapeless jumpers, baggy trousers, loose shirt dresses and midi skirts on offer. Are we supposed to be hiding away? Why are all the options so bland? Why are none of them even remotely form-fitting?I have spent a large portion of my life shopping for jeans that fit properly. Throughout my teens, there were countless tears-in-changing-rooms moments with my mum because we’d been searching for hours for jeans with a slim waist and long leg, but we had no such luck. For an industry seemingly biased towards tall, slim women, it surprises me that the clothing options available to us are so limited.
Dungarees, jumpsuits and playsuits are usually a total write-off. Thus far in my search I have found one pair of dungarees from ASOS which fit like a dream, while my endeavour for a flattering jumpsuit is ongoing.
Wearing a mini skirt verges on indecent exposure: bending over, ascending stairs and walking anywhere without having to constantly tug on the hem of said skirt are near impossible feats. The prefix of ‘maxi’ when applied to any item of clothing is practically laughable, unless you define maxi as calf/ankle length, while ‘midi’ seems to be more like knee length and, unsurprisingly, unflattering.
Luckily, there are some exceptions and, after many hours spent searching the high street and online for clothes to fit my long limbs, I have discovered a few gems out there. Though they are few in number, these products should provide a solid foundation on which to build your tall-drobe and hopefully inspire other brands to increase their tall variety.
Upon asking fellow tall members of the fashion team for stories of their struggles, we discovered a pattern in tall shopping. “Go for viking brands,” says luxury editor Belinda White. The average Swedish woman is 5’9” which dwarfs the UK’s average of 5’3” - no wonder we struggle to find clothes to fit, we’re living in the wrong country. Clothing from brands like Cheap Monday and COS are cut longer than many of their high-street counterparts thanks to their Nordic roots.