Menswear for skinny chicks
February 27, 2014 11:25 AM   Subscribe

Similar AskMes have been put out before, but I'd like to modify it with my special flake-ful details: I'm wondering if anyone can specifically recommend retailers that carry 1) menswear-style clothing for women 2) with a full line of sizes down to US size 0.

I'm a tallish (5'8"), very slim (115 lbs, usually US size 0 or 2) gal who would like to dress like the love child of Katherine Hepburn and Mycroft Holmes. I'm having a difficult time finding blazers/suit jackets/shirts that are nipped in enough at the waist to avoid bulking me up around the middle. Did I mention my gangly orangutan arms and long torso? Also, why are all women's vests seemingly WAY too short, especially in the back? Or perhaps it's just that most women's trousers fit far too low on the hips these days? What the hell do you do with your shirt-tails? Out often looks sloppy, tucked often leaves me with a weird bulge above the waistline, not to mention seeing lumps through snug pants. I know the answer to this is almost certainly "lots of expensive tailoring", but I'm wondering if any of my fellow skinny chicks who are into looking glam-dapper can halps me out.

I've read some of the articles on DapperQ and have seen some of the blogs and very pricey places that do custom work mentioned in this post
posted by SinAesthetic to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (9 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
J. Crew has some excellent, nicely tailored women's pieces that are very androgynous or masculine. Their Minnie pants in particular are just lovely. They go down to a size 00 Petite (and also have 0 Tall and 00 Regular) so you should be able to find some nice basics in your size. Their Schoolboy Blazer always lands me compliments - it is structured, clean, and well-tailored.

They also have an excellent and free personal shopping service and a decent student/educator discount (not sure if that applies to you but it is a nice perk).
posted by k8lin at 11:51 AM on February 27, 2014 [3 favorites]

Great recommendations in this piece, which specifically covers designers who are making clothes for trans men and self-identified butch women.
posted by OhPuhLeez at 11:54 AM on February 27, 2014

Another vote for the tall sizes from J. Crew. (If they're a little pricey for you, sign up for email notifications -- they send out frequent discount codes, which you can often combine with sales in order to get great bargains.) Banana Republic's tall sizes work well, too, though they seem to have gotten away from some of their menswear styling lately.
posted by scody at 12:05 PM on February 27, 2014

+1 on the schoolboy blazer and J. Crew in general. I'm much shorter than you but built similarly and find their petite sizing to be great. I also actually own a pair of very Hepburn-eque pants from them in 00 tall that I had a tailor lop a foot of fabric off so I imagine the tall 0 or 00s would be perfect for you.
posted by (Over) Thinking at 3:47 PM on February 27, 2014

Inexpensive: Zara. The default cut of most of their trousers is superlong and skinny. If there's a store nearby that's where I'd go and try stuff on. They would definitely have the glam stuff. Not the best quality though.
Pricey: Theory makes all the way down to size 00. I'm almost 5'10" and I like their trousers because the inseam is usually like 34". I'm into menswear styles and I like their suits a lot. You could always wait for seasonal sales.
Also might try Club Monaco, kind of in between. They used to make a lot more suits, and I liked those, now they seem to be more glam.
For dealing with shirttails, I either wear slim-fit t-shirts that don't show, or occasionally silk tops that are hemmed and don't need to be tucked in, or if it's a blouse, a silk or cotton-silk blend (J Crew's Perfect Shirts sometimes come in a decent cotton-silk blend that's good for summer) and don't wear the top layer tucked in if the trousers are snug..
posted by citron at 7:02 PM on February 27, 2014

I have your exact body and when I was working in a bank, the only clothes I could find that fit (collared shirts, jackets etc) were Banana Republic in size 0.
posted by celtalitha at 10:30 AM on February 28, 2014

(I mean height and weight-wise obviously)
posted by celtalitha at 10:31 AM on February 28, 2014

Thanks for the answers so far...Yes celtalitha, Banana Republic is my go-to. But what I'm really hungry for are things like 3-piece suits that veer out of the standard black-taupe-navy and into Mycroft-y plaids and herringbones. Very British, very dapper. Something you could wear a tie and a pocket watch with. BUT cut very feminine and form-fitting, not like the link you posted OhPuhLeez, where the goal seems to be to get a mannish cut that de-accentuated breasts and waists. Think THIS
posted by SinAesthetic at 11:27 AM on February 28, 2014

Oof, yes, Esther Quek is perfect. Have you seen this?

nthing J Crew and the schoolboy blazer, but (as a 5'8" woman who is skinny, though not quite as skinny as you) I've also had some luck buying blazers at H&M. The tailoring is surprisingly good, and they do blazers in pretty interesting fabrics. I also tried on an allsaints blazer the other day that was gorgeous and would have fit me perfectly if I were just a bit skinnier, so they might be worth investigating.
posted by dizziest at 8:47 PM on March 3, 2014

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