The Height Report
Mary Alice Stephenson, 41, 6'
High-waisted styles, like these wide-leg pants (Charles Nolan), make a long torso look more in proportion, delivering an "instant hourglass look," says Stephenson, a stylist and fashion commentator. The top (BR Monogram) is asymmetrical, so it doesn't exaggerate her shoulders. "So many people tell tall women what not to wear. Let yourself play," says Stephenson, who started experimenting with stilettos, short skirts, and ruffles in her late 30s (before, her uniform was all dark clothes and flats). She loves these heels (Elie Tahari), though she also has a fondness for jeweled sandals.
Earrings, H.Stern; ring, Frangos Nicolas
Give separate pieces a chance at the office—they're fresher than a suit, and different colors on top and bottom break up your height. "In school I fantasized about being 5'1," recalls Green, a Fox News correspondent (being measured by tailor Russ Giliberto). Despite fit challenges, Green is an expert at making the most of her stature. "A slim upper body is my most attractive asset," she says, showing it off with a structured jacket (Max Mara) over a fuller-cut skirt (Lafayette 148 New York).
Sweater, Donna Karan New York; hoops and ring, Marcia Moran; shoes, Vaneli
Griffin, a filmmaker and Project Runway designer (season 2), solves the lanky-arms issue by layering: Find a tee with sleeves that hit the wrist (Lutz & Patmos), then add a cardigan (Tory Burch) and a jacket with pushed-up sleeves (Zulema). "Don't fear your height—own it. People love that you make a statement when you enter a room," says Griffin. Teased as a kid ("I was called Giraffe"), she does find that shopping can be a pain, especially for jeans (James Jeans, extralong).
Necklace, Sevan; shoes, Valentino
Peterson, a fashion publicist, takes the edge off all black with different textures, mixing a beaded shift (Philosophy di Alberta Ferretti) with shiny hose (Wolford). The dress's A-line shape adds a bit of width to her thin frame. "When I was young, tall wasn't cute," says Peterson. Then, at 16, she visited her sister in New York City: "I got treated like a model! It's chic to be tall here." Short skirts and single-color ensembles can be tricky for women of stature, but Peterson is young and irreverent enough to get away with rule-breaking choices.
Earrings, H.Stern; ring, Jill Jacobson; clutch, Burberry; shoes, Sergio Rossi
Grant, a writer for the Web site TheFashionSpot.com, is crazy about dresses that emphasize her curves—"anything baggy just makes you look bigger," she says. Feminine clothes, like this vintage-inspired sheath with a sweetheart neckline and kick pleats (Stop Staring!), keep her height from being intimidating. Belts are a cinch for most six-footers we spoke to; see how this one (LAI) bisects Grant's body. "Instead of hiding my height, I flaunt it," she says. A size 10, Grant proves that it's as cool to be tall and voluptuous as it is to be tall and lean.
Bangles, Roberto Coin. Shoes, Chanel
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