Only a few top fashion designers--those who show their lines during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week twice a year--offer a petite clothing line in addition to their other lines. Although none of these designers offers petite clothing in their high-end lines, at least we can enjoy designers' styles in their petite lines.
1. Max Azria
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Paris-born Max Azria currently designs three major lines: Herve Leger, Max Azria, and BCBGMAXAZRIA. The BCBG label will be the most familiar to most women both because of its retail stores and its price points, which are lower than the other two labels. Known for fun and youthful style, BCBG offers petite dresses and separates in petite sizes 00-14 through Nordstrom (Vendor's Site
See the BCBGMAXAZRIA spring 2009 runway collection.
2. Calvin Klein
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Having gained fame for his introduction of designer jeans and his provocative advertising campaigns, Calvin Klein has been recognized as a top American designer for over 30 years. Known for his clean style and classic lines, Calvin Klein offers petite clothing in petite sizes 4-12. You can find Calvin Klein dresses at Dillards (Vendor's Site
) while Macy's (Vendor's Site
) carries Calvin Klein petite separates.
3. Michael Kors
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Like Calvin Klein, Michael Kors studied fashion at the prestigious FIT in New York, and he soon made a name for himself as a designer of luxury sportswear. Now he's also known as a judge for Project Runway. Dresses from Michael Kors' high-end line cost over $1000, but petites from his MICHAEL Michael Kors line typically retail in the range of $70-$150, and they're available from Nordstrom. (Vendor's Site)
and Macy's (Vendor's Site)
4. Ralph Lauren
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Ralph Lauren began his career as a tie salesman and then started creating his own ties, which he sold to department stores. More a savvy businessman than a designer, Ralph Lauren has achieved prominence by successfully creating an image of classic style. Although other name designers offer no petite clothing on their company Web sites, Ralph Lauren dresses and separates for petites are available through the Ralph Lauren Web site (Vendor's Site
) in petite sizes 2-14 and are priced in the range of $50-$200. Department stores, which also carry petites from the Lauren Ralph Lauren line, include Macy's, (Vendor's Site
) Dillard's, (Vendor's Site
) and Nordstrom (Vendor's Site
5. Tadashi Shoji
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Fashion designer Tadashi Shoji is known for his flattering cocktail attire and evening gowns. His evening gowns have been worn on the red carpet at several awards ceremonies in Hollywood as well as elsewhere. Born in Japan, Tadashi Shoji studied art, later moving to the United States where he attended college in Los Angeles and graduated with a degree in fashion design. He launched his own line in 1982. In 2013, Nordstrom and Bloomingdales began carrying the Tadashi Shoji line for petites, which features both cocktail dresses and evening gowns.
6. Vera Wang
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Most notable as a high-end bridal gown designer, Vera Wang worked as an editor at Vogue
and a design director at Ralph Lauren before launching her first wedding gown collection. Since then, she's branched out into other fashion design areas and now has an agreement with Kohl's to design an exclusive line for the mid-priced department store. Petites have now been added to the line, which is available in petite sizes 2-16. Petites in the Simply Vera Vera Wang line are only available at Kohl's (Vendor's Site