In Praise Of “Curvy” Fit Bottoms

Here’s a question you probably don’t ask yourself often enough: do my clothes fit me correctly?

You see, finding clothes that fit ANY body is a challenge; finding those that’ll fit a short, curvaceous body belonging to a member of the #PetiteCrew can feel altogether impossible. But it’s not! We’ve spoken ad nauseam about the need for a good tailor, and it’s still one of the more important fashion choices a petite, curvy lady can make. But there are also a number of ways to tilt the machine in the right direction without always factoring in $10-50 extra for alterations.

The most obvious of these, of course, is to shop in the petite section whenever you can – the more I’ve paid attention to the difference in fit between Petite and Misses, the more I’ve realized I’m truly a Petite. Misses tops have too much fabric in the shoulders, and hit at weird parts of my hips; Misses bottoms, naturally, are much longer than I want them to be (all of this is in general; of course there are Misses brands that fit more like Petite, and I’ve discovered the older I get and the more I wear heels to work, the more I want my pencil skirts to be in non-Petite sizes).

Another very simple way to lower your alterations costs is to identify the specific style of bottoms you need to wear. For me, this is a “curvy” fit. Curvy can go by many names, depending on the brand – at Banana Republic, it’s called Jackson; at Loft, it’s called Julie. The premise remains the same: bottoms with contours that match those of us who have smaller waists than hips.

For a long time, I avoided curvy-fit pants. Mostly, this was because I was a young person, and I didn’t want to wear high-rise pants in the early to mid ’00s. Luckily, my age has gone up at the same time rises have; today, 9″ is mid-rise, and much nicer to my body. I’ve gotten to the point where the only pants I’ll buy are those meant for the contours of the curvy lower half – and it turns out this doesn’t just apply to pants! I recently discovered curvy-fit pencil skirts, and my life is changed. No more wearing skirts that either require significant waistline alterations (because the fit to my hips is larger than the fit to my waist) or bear the tell-tale bunching of a too-tight fit (just because it’s stretchy doesn’t mean you can get away with buying beneath your size, guys). Most importantly, no more twisting and re-adjusting throughout the day.

Here are a few of my favorite curvy-fit bottoms – see if you can spot a pattern:


Ann Taylor | Ann Taylor | Loft | Loft

Yep, they’re all Ann Inc. brands. I certainly have other pants I love (holla to Madewell Skinny Skinny jeans and Old Navy Pixie pants!) but for me, when I need a work pant or skirt, there’s truly nobody like Ann to guarantee it’ll be a great fit and well-made.

What curvy-fit brands do you love, Team PCA? Let us know in the comments!

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