where do small (not petite) over-40s buy clothes?

I am shortish (5'4 1/2"), but too tall for petites. I have a terrible time finding pants, mainly because I have slender hips. Loft? Eddie Bauer? Their smallest sizes (0 at Loft; 2 at Eddie Bauer) are too big for me. (I just saw that Loft does, in theory, have some 00s, but that option is always grayed out when I find a style I like.) I can buy pants in the junior department at Target, but a lot the styles don't look right for someone my age (almost 50). Do any other over-40 women have these same clothing issues? Where do you shop?

Just found some 00 and 0 petite crops on the Loft web site. (I just tried on the 0s in the store, and they were a near-miss.) Since they aren't full-length pants, the petites might work. Still, that won't help me with regular pants. Gap used to be my go-to store, but the very low waists on their pants just aren't very flattering if you have even a bit of a belly.

Last edited by Verity; 04-13-2011 at 11:46 AM.
I'm small-tall.

Gap is great for having a lot of sizes, they have 00 tall which is like scarecrow size, 6'2" and 100 pounds or something ridiculous like that; and also have the petites and regular in all sizes. Eddie Bauer annoys me because they start tall at MEDIUM not small, Levis does something similar, they have long inseam but only starting at size 6.

I'm 5'9 and 135, and in Gap wear the 4 regular, or 4 tall in pants (but hemmed to 33"), and small-tall in the tops, they do have XS in everything.

I think you might try Gap petites because they do run tallish in everything. I think the waists are getting higher again - or you could do something similar to what I do & buy the regular length and hem if you are longer waisted.

Also I like Express, those editor pants are great.

I don't really have trouble finding styles in the junior dept, though I usually hold out for tall sizes now so tend to buy from gap instead. I just stick to the "plain" sort of thing, solid colors, sleeker lines, and away from anything frilly, fussy, etc.
*******************************************
ETA: I did lose some weight last year, now hovering at 125, still a little over 5'9", LOL. Gap is still the best place for me to find stuff that fits; I am usually wearing a 2 there in pants now, sometimes 4, my butt is about 35" or 36" and the Gap sizes do go down to 00, even in the tall stuff.

What is funny is that I have old size 6 pants that fit the same as new size 2. They keep re-centering the Medium as ladies get bigger. That's why they need the double-aught.
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Last edited by Robin-in-FL; 01-07-2012 at 05:19 PM.
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I am shortish (5'4 1/2"), but too tall for petites. I have a terrible time finding pants, mainly because I have slender hips. Loft? Eddie Bauer? Their smallest sizes (0 at Loft; 2 at Eddie Bauer) are too big for me. (I just saw that Loft does, in theory, have some 00s, but that option is always grayed out when I find a style I like.) I can buy pants in the junior department at Target, but a lot the styles don't look right for someone my age (almost 50). Do any other over-40 women have these same clothing issues? Where do you shop?

Just found some 00 and 0 petite crops on the Loft web site. (I just tried on the 0s in the store, and they were a near-miss.) Since they aren't full-length pants, the petites might work. Still, that won't help me with regular pants. Gap used to be my go-to store, but the very low waists on their pants just aren't very flattering if you have even a bit of a belly.
Originally Posted by Verity
My sister is 50, 5'4" and lean. She loves Liz Claiborne. She says that they always fit her perfectly. I think Macy's and JC Penney carry that brand.

I agree with the previous poster that Express Editor pants are great for lean people. They look modern.
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Thanks for the ideas. I am just a bit too tall for Gap petites/shorts, unfortunately. I never shop at Express because there isn't one near me, but it sounds as if it's worth seeking out.

I recently bought some higher-waist jeans from American Eagle, of all places. Too bad they offer them only in a skinny leg. I don't mind that style some of the time, but for an everyday, go-to style, I prefer a straight (not skin-tight) calf.

Last edited by Verity; 08-19-2011 at 10:02 AM.
I have huge issues with clothes, as I am just about 5' but I am NOT a size 0, more like an 8P or 10P. I have noticed that clothing is crap regardless of whether one shops at walmart or Macys. The quality has really deteriorated, and its very difficult to not see one's self coming and going, meaning it is very difficult to find stores, at least where I live, that carry fun, original clothing. It can be found on line but generally is very pricey, like Sundance. I hate what is happening! and size 5 shoes are a nightmare!
I am small + tall. Ann Taylor has some options and so does Talbots. I have many suits from Eddie Bauer because you can get separates & they're high quality. For cheaper stuff I try Worthington at JC Penney.
Have you tried Talbots? They have really great sales and quality pieces. All of my basic but nice fitting suits and slacks are purchased from there and my mom only shops at Talbots. I'm not small but they tend to run small so I would say check them out, plus they ship really quick.

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I could talk about this for a while. Fewer and fewer stores are carrying petites. And, the choice are bleak. If one wants to not look like everyone else, good luck! Ann Taylor and Talbots are not my look. Sometimes Eddie bauer is; often I order from Jjill. I went looking for a new winter coat this year and I was appalled at the lack of choice and at the poor quality being offered. What used to look like Penneys is now in Macys and the Boston Store. We are all paying a price for companies moving overseas. And I mean that literally: we are paying a lot for cr-p.
I'm 5'3" and finding the right clothes is a pain, I agree. I always have to shorten pants. Petites don't work on me - my arms are too long and somehow the proportions don't work.

I like Lord and Taylor - they have good sales. Also the staff is not on commission so they don't push you. L&T has clothes that are their own label that are knockoffs that sometimes fit well.

Good luck with this!
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I'm 5'4 + and wear a size 2/4...I shop JCrew regularly. They have S (short ) and R (regular) sizes for the majority of their pants. 8 out of 10 pairs in my closet are JCrew (cords, chinos, slacks, etc) I shop their sale and factory sites to save $$$.

I also have AG, Citizens, and Sevens, but wait for sale days to scoop those up.

My other favorite place to shop is Nordstroms, their Halogen line is nice for work and the prices are reasonable.

If I want to bulk shop for sweaters, I go to TJ Maxx or Goodwill. Some of my all time favorite sweaters are second hand.
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I hadn't thought of JCrew--their non-sale prices are crazy, but I might check their sale/clearance stuff. I used to love their shirts back in the early '90s (I still have some that I sleep in or use for home workouts), but I haven't shopped there in many years.

An aside--I seriously miss the days when loose, flowing clothing was in style for people under age 70 or so! If I could dress the way I want with no thought to aging myself, I'd absolutely embrace that style. SO comfortable.

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