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Fashions for Tall Women

Updated on December 8, 2011
Photo from
Photo from

Style, Stature and Shoes

Though my stature doesn't quite reach the gargantuan proportions of the beauty on the right (Las Vegan Heather Green, who tops 7ft in her tallest heels) at just under 5'10', I understand only too well the agonies and the ecstasies of tall women's fashion. Certainly, tall women can carry off clothes with an imposing and elegant aplomb but on the flipside, finding clothes and shoes that a) actually fit and b) don't make us look like effeminate men in drag, can be problematic.

Let's start with the shoes. It's all very well for Nicole Kidman to swan about in her limited edition, three inch heeled Salvatore Ferragamo's but not all of us have the funds to acquire such beauties nor the beauty to carry off the extra height.

While there are times I might just be in the mood for some extra inches, as a tall woman my general inclination is not to be more imposing than necessary. Certainly for every day wear, I look for comfortable but stylish shoes with a minimum heel height. However, therein lies the rub - where to get truly chic size 10 shoes without the heel height?

Stunning Salvatore Ferrango red shoes, inspired by the 1930s and worn to effect by Nicole Kidman in Baz Lurhman's "Australia"....however not ideal for super tall women.
Stunning Salvatore Ferrango red shoes, inspired by the 1930s and worn to effect by Nicole Kidman in Baz Lurhman's "Australia"....however not ideal for super tall women.
Tall Taylor Swift (centre) at 5'11
Tall Taylor Swift (centre) at 5'11

Don't Despair

Even if, by careful shopping with an astute eye at the right places, we manage to solve the shoe issue there's still the problem of skirt and pants length, which often falls short of the leg length beneath. Not to mention the shortfall in the sleeves of shirts and jackets.

These problems are perplexing when we consider that in the rarified world of high fashion the tall woman rules, at least on the cat walk. The reality doesn't seem to match the image, since so many clothing outlets catering for the ordinary woman appear to be designed for diminutively sized women of relatively shortish stature. In the world of everyday fashion, averages reign supreme.

Tall women need not despair, because the truth is, being tall is more a positive than a negative when it comes to clothes and there are lots of tips and tricks to minimise the bean pole effect and maximise the natural advantage. A simple long necklace for example, can break up an outfit and emphasise elegance while downplaying excess inches. A taller woman can wear thick, chunky belts, longer skirt lengths, knee high boots and sleek tailored jackets without looking overwhelmed. Mixing colours in tops and bottoms can reduce a long span of monotony and make a woman look shorter and large handbags, scarves and big earrings distract from too much height.

Hair too is vital consideration for taller women, as it's all about getting the right balance and proportion. As a general rule, hair that just touches the shoulders is a safe option for the vertically blessed. I say blessed because, by far the most important consideration for tall girls is to wear your height with confidence – nature has given you a gift and you should signal to the world that you're happy about it.

Nicole Kidman in navy and white Ferragamo shoes. Oficially she's down as 5'11 but rumour has it she's closer to 6'.
Nicole Kidman in navy and white Ferragamo shoes. Oficially she's down as 5'11 but rumour has it she's closer to 6'.


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