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Petite Top Heavy

The petite top heavy lady will discover how to look her best once she understands her body proportions.

The Inverted Triangle body has firm shoulders and sometimes a generous bust. With a shorter stature this figure can easily appear to be top heavy. Therefore, it helps to be aware of your vertical proportions.  

You may consider yourself Petite Top Heavy if: 

  • You are petite with shoulders wide than your hips
  • You are petite with a heavy bust making you look larger at the top 
  • Your torso is longer than the length of your legs
Petite top heavy #petite #top heavy https://www.style-yourself-confident.com/petite-top-heavy.html

Balance and proportion

Balance and proportion is important but don't be over critical of your figure.  

The body is considered to be divided in half at the leg break (where your body bends) and if the top half of your body measures roughly the same as your bottom half, then you are perfectly in proportion.

If you are Petite and completely in proportion, then you will probably find that clothes ranges designed specifically for the Petite lady will be perfect for you.

However, if your proportions are not equal, that is your torso is longer than your legs, you can create balance by visually adjusting the length of your body. You can do this with both the shape and the color of the clothes you wear.

Petite top heavy #petite #top heavy https://www.style-yourself-confident.com/petite-top-heavy.html

The aim for Petite top heavy is..

  • Horizontally - minimize wide shoulders to balance more slender hips
  • Vertically - visually lengthen the legs to balance the heavier torso

In this image the legs are all the same length but you can see how easy it is to influence the eye with color.

Where the color is taken right up to under the bust it appears to make the legs look considerably longer. So a high waist pant in a dark color would have this effect.

When the break in color is lower then the light color takes precendence and the top half of the body looks longer - the legs therefore shorter. 

Petite top heavy #petite #top heavy https://www.style-yourself-confident.com/petite-top-heavy.html

Styles for dresses...

  • A dress or jumpsuit (all in one) will elongate the figure
  • Wide shoulder straps will minimize the shoulders
  • A scoop or V neck will bring the eye down and away from shoulder line
  • Choose a style to 'raise' the waistline visually - keep a belt or shaping high
  • A high waisted tunic style is perfect
  • Keep hemline shorter to elongate legs if appropriate
  • Never finish a hemline at the widest part of your leg
  • Match shoes to hosiery to lengthen the leg, heels if possible

For tops and jackets...

  • Keep detail to a minimum above the waist and darker colors are best
  • A petite top heavy lady should avoid boat shaped necks and shoulder detail
  • Keep tops fluid to minimize broad shoulders and large bust
  • Keep tops shorter to elongate the bottom half
  • Choose single breasted or buttonless jackets, kimono shape or waterfall

To minimize broad shoulders

  • Avoid sleeves that are cut-in, muscle back or halter neck. They will all emphasize broad shoulders.
Tops for petite top heavy #heavy bust #top heavy https://www.style-yourself-confident.com/petite-top-heavy.html

Trousers or jeans...

The aim is to visually lengthen the leg to balance.

  • high waisted trousers are great
  • avoid tapered trousers which shorten your legs, and also cropped trousers that cut the leg in half
  • pants should create a vertical line, choose straight legged or wider legged trousers
  • create vertical lines with stripes or a crease down the front of pants 
  • you can wear small pattern and detail to draw the eye down but keep it in proportion to your size
  • pants should be long enough to cover your heels and the front of your shoes or boots
  • bootcut jeans are good to balance your shoulder line but ensure they are long enough to elongate the legs
Petite top heavy #petite #top heavy https://www.style-yourself-confident.com/petite-top-heavy.html

Hosiery, shoes and boots

  • Match skirt or trouser leg to hose, shoes or boots
  • Wear heels or wedges when comfortable and appropriate


  • If you have a heavy bustline, always wear a well fitted bra to lift and minimize. It also adds length to the area between bust and waist.

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