At 5'11", I don't pretend to be an outlier in the fashion community — Karlie Kloss is 6'1", after all. But in my real life, that's another story. I grew up surrounded by a circle of friends who maxed out at 5'2" and spent my teen years terrified of heels (yes, I wore kitten heels to my prom). Always standing out when I didn't want to, having to pose in the back of group photos, and challenging myself to meet my private school's knee-length-skirt dress code, standing tall was easier said than done.
It wasn't until I moved to New York after college that I came to see the brighter side of having my height. Suddenly the phrase "Wow, you're tall" didn't carry a stigma but resembled something more like a compliment. "Gee, thanks," I'd respond (if hearing that 50 times a day didn't get to be a headache, complimentary or otherwise).
And once I embraced my height, so did I the advantages that come with it. Did you know that while the weather up here isn't any different, I don't find my face lodged in other people's armpits in a crowded subway car? So, there's that. But aside from a breezier commute, there are real bonuses — and I'm talking fashion perks — that my fellow tall friends should remember the next time they lament too-short jeans or too-high heels. By my count there are 11 of them, so here goes:
1. You'll Never Need Your Pants Hemmed
Some people shorten their jeans. To you, that's just crazy, considering it's a rare treat to find denim that's long enough to reach a tall lady's ankles.
2. Your Closet Space Is Doubled
Those high racks, the ones most people can't reach without the aid of a step stool? They're all yours (and you don't even need to stand on your tiptoes to reach them). Just keep piling up the shoeboxes and Winter sweaters like a skilled climber scaling Mount Everest.
3. You Can Wear Flats
They're happening , people.
4. Or You Can Wear Heels
No one or nothing should make you feel uncomfortable about wearing them.
5. Clothing Just Fits Better
Those runway designs? Even if you can't afford them, even if you're not sample size, the proportions just work on you. No petite girl can make that claim, no matter how excellent their style (sorry, SJP).
6. Every Skirt Length and Boot Height Works
Because how many times have you worried that a cut makes your legs look short? Never? Exactly.
7. Sneakers Don't Need to Have Wedges
Come on, why add discomfort to the most practical fashion trend to hit the runway in decades? Unlike Naomi Watts , your sneakers could literally go from brunch to basketball court (that is, if you played basketball — as most strangers presume you do).
8. You Can See Your Way Through a Crowd
Busy sample sales are no match for your radar ability to spot the shoe section tucked in the back of the showroom.
9. Nobody Wants to Borrow Your Clothes
This one's a little selfish, but in college, nobody ever asked to borrow the heels of a woman with size-11 feet. When traveling with friends, your extralong sarongs and maxi skirts are off-limits. In the same vein, you're never at risk for hand-me-downs if, like me, you tended to grow out of sizes before your older siblings.
10. You Learn to Improvise
That signature half-tucked, partially cuffed sleeves trick comes from necessity. When shirts don't quite fit right or trousers are a bit cropped, you find a way to make them work. No doubt, this is where fellow tall girl Jenna Lyons's aesthetic stems from.
11. People Ask If You're a Model
Yes, we all know it's a line, and it's not like "heaven must be missing an angel" is any worse. But how many times have your short friends been asked that?