Closing the Brand: A Note from our Founder

Posted on August 10, 2015 | 0 comments

My Fellow Petite,

 

I wanted to reach out to let you know we've made the difficult decision to unfortunately move on from our beloved brand. This has not been an easy decision by any means as it has been such a gratifying journey to get to know so many of you, to help solve some of your shopping pain points and to rally around the cry that “Petite is Powerful!”

 

I was inspired to start this journey to solve not only my own challenges, but those of millions of petite women who found shopping as arduous as I did. Having no background in the fashion industry I knew this wasn’t going to be an easy feat, but since half the female population in the US is 5’4” & under I knew I had to at least give it a shot. We started off as an online boutique (under a different name and brand) and eventually decided that we needed to make our own pieces to deliver the customer experience we thought petites deserved.

 

Thanks to your help, we successfully launched the first product on Kickstarter and it was a blast to hear your incredible reactions! Since then we’ve been working hard on a new collection, mainly inspired by your feedback. However, sometimes you have to pause and assess if you’re really making the right decision for yourself, your brand, and most importantly, your customers. And when we did just that, we realized that we weren’t going to be able to deliver on our vision. Fashion is a cash-intensive business and quite simply we did not have the right amount to invest to deliver the customer experience you deserve.

 

While we are closing this chapter, I’d love to leave you with a few things that really stuck with me through this experience:

 

  1. Women are really hard on themselves: Whether I’m self-reflecting with other female entrepreneurs or talking to customers, I can’t help but notice women have a tendency to undermine their own accomplishments and be their own worst critic. Through Carolina Alvo I was very passionate about showcasing “petite” in a positive light by highlighting other amazing petite women because I felt strongly that women needed more affirmative messages in their life. As I approach my 30th birthday, I’m trying to take a strong dose of my own advice and not be so hard on myself (which has not been easy given this transition). But I’m trying to focus on all that we have accomplished and learned versus what didn’t go as planned. I hope to make this a habit in the future and hope you do as well!

 

  1. How we shop really matters: There is no easy way to say it: the fashion industry is an incredibly wasteful industry and we are all responsible for it being this way. Here are two great resources that sum it up better than I ever could: Overdressed & The True Cost. I would encourage you to check them out and learn how our habits have an impact on millions around the world as well as major consequences for generations to come. The good news is there are many organizations and brands that want to change the course of the industry like Project Just and the Brooklyn Fashion Design Accelerator and we all have the power to get onboard and be a part of this small, yet growing trend.

 

  1. There has never been a better time to create a niche business: The startup community is inspiring and there is no shortage of amazingly creative people who are solving new problems everyday. Fashion startups are no exception and there has never been a better time to start a business that is solving a unique problem. I still strongly believe that petite fashion will have its moment and I will be keeping my eye out for great new brands that will fill the void. I encourage you to support emerging brands, as you have supported us, because the little brands need all the help they can get. A new favorite of mine just recently launched here in New York by three sisters, Gertrude & Sly. Check them out and keep your eyes out for the next emerging designer trying and change petite fashion!

 

It’s been such an honor to take this journey with you and words cannot tell you how much I appreciate it. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to me directly: Carolina@carolinaalvo.com. We do have still have limited stock of our Kathleen Dress in black so if you or anyone you know needs a great fit & flare dress, please let me know.

 

Thank you again for your continued support and remember: Petite is Powerful!

With a disproportionately large amount of gratitude,

Carolina

 

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3 Ways Salma Hayek Nailed This Outfit

Posted on August 06, 2015 | 0 comments
Petite actress Salma Hayek recently dressed in an all white look at the press conference of Kahlil Gibran’s new film The Prophet. It seems to be a simple, sophisticated look at first glance but she subtly nailed styling rules that all petites should know.
Monochrome
She chose all white, which is not only perfect for this season but also perfect for petites. Dressing in one color creates an unbroken line, making you appear longer and taller. 
Wide Leg
This season, the wide leg has been trending. As petites, anything with that much fabric is always a little suspect but wide leg pants are actually great for us. The trick is in the fit. The pants should be close fitting above the knee and flow out seamlessly below it. A great rule of thumb is that the hem of your pants should not extend past your hip; if it does, you’ve gone too wide. Salma manages to find a pair of pants that does this perfectly.
Cinched Waist
When wearing wide leg pants, you want your top to proportion the look. To maintain chicness, you might not want to go skintight. Selma found the perfect solution: a top with a cinched hem. That hem allowed her to wear a roomy top that compliments her pants, while maintaining a silhouette that shows off her shape.
Well done, Salma!

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Petite in the Street: Evy Ortiz

Posted on August 03, 2015 | 0 comments

Evy Ortiz is a New York born-and-bred musical theater actress of Puerto Rican descent. She studied theater at Pace University and music at NYU as well as opera in her younger years. This summer, she works at Abraham House teaching children voice and piano. Evyortiz.com

 

How petite are you?

I’m 5 foot 3.

 

How has teaching children been?

It’s been a bit of a challenge but it’s been really great figuring out how to enhance their lives and inspire them. I just started a gofundme for them to go rock climbing because I want to expose them to things they don’t regularly experience. I remember when I was younger, going on cool trips that sparked interests in me of things other than just New York’s concrete buildings. It’s really enriched my personality though—making a petite woman even stronger!

 

How would you describe your wardrobe?

I would describe it as bohemian chic. I’m the kind of girl who will wear a blazer and a funky dress or a leather jacket and a dress with boots. Or even a dress with sneakers. I like to keep it sort of girly and classic but then throw in something a little edgy.

 

What’s your fashion philosophy?

Whatever you wear, you should feel really good in it. I read an article that said you should downsize your closet so that everything you have, you should love. So I started throwing out stuff and it’s so much better because now I’m almost guaranteed to like everything I wear. Being comfortable is a really important too.   If you can rock a bandage dress and be really comfortable, great; if not, I think it shows. So just something that makes you feel attractive that you’re also comfortable in.

 

What’s your favorite styling trick?

I’ve been rolling up my jeans a lot this summer. I normally wear cute dresses but I’ve been working with kids so I’ve had to adjust my wardrobe. I’ll roll up my skinny jeans, which creates sort of a boyfriend look. Also, never go anywhere without a pushup bra, ha!

 

Do you have a favorite female celebrity?

I tend to admire actresses I find intelligent as well as talented. I admire Kate Winslet; she’s an activist for women. She speaks about loving your beauty as you age and not feeling like you have to change yourself. I really respect that. Her style is really nice too. The way she dresses is so classic and tailored.

 

Do you have any advice for fellow petites?

Don’t let being small hold you back from anything. That line, “great things come in small packages”—it’s true! You can still be very powerful and I think it’s cool to surprise people. Being a petite woman, sometimes they expect someone shy or timid. It’s cool when you come out and you’re really smart or unafraid to speak your mind. Also, don’t ever think being small is a detriment—there are all forms of beauty. It’s good that there are people making clothes specifically for us so that we can look good in them too.

 

 

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6 Short Male Celebrities We Admire

Posted on July 31, 2015 | 0 comments
The first New York Men’s Fashion Week was very different from Women’s Fashion Week with its calmer tone and press.  One similarity we couldn’t help but notice however, was the unbroken lack of representation for the shorter statured.  To give the shorter males some shine, here are a few of our favorite “petite” male celebrities.
 
George Stephanopolous
The talented journalist and chief anchor at ABC News comes up at 5’7”. 
 
Aziz Ansari
The hilarious Parks and Recreation comic is 5’6”. 
 
James McAvoy
The talented X-Men actor is actually 5’7”.  
 
Kevin Hart
The eminent actor, comedian, and producer is 5’4”. 
 
Jon Stewart
The witty soon-to-be retired host of the Daily Show is a full 5’7”.
 
 Seth Green
The quirky actor, producer, and director is also 5’4”. 
 
 

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Fall Trends You Can Start Wearing Now

Posted on July 29, 2015 | 0 comments
We know we're in the middle of summer but that doesn't mean we can't plan ahead and start incorporating certain trends into our August routine.

Pleats

 

Whether you’re donning a skirt or pants, you can get in on this trend.  Transition to fall by simply layering up with tights and a jacket or scarf.  

 

Mock Neck

It’s a little too hot for a full on turtleneck right now but find a short-sleeved mock neck top and you’re in luck.  You can pair it with a midi skirt or culottes now.  When those cool days start coming around, pair it with your favorite jeans and a cool blazer. 
Tip: Petites: for fear of being "fabric swallowed", hair up with a covered neck!  Also, try finding a mock neck or turtleneck that shows a peak of your neck--that will elongate it.  

 

Grey

Stock up on your grey staples now because grey's become the new black.  This fall nothing will beat the all grey look. 

 

Strapless

It's time for the collarbones to have their moment.  For the summer, find a cute strapless dress for your night out.  For fall, toss a pair of skinny cropped pants on underneath, don a neckerchief, and you’re set.
Petites: what are your favorite fall trends you can't wait to try?

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