If you have a Gordman's, Ross's or TJ Maxx nearby...they are the same price as Walmart (if not better...the clearance is AWESOME) and have real designer clothes. I bought two pairs of pants and five shirts for $30 in the misses. I'm not petite (my sisters qualify) but sometimes I can get by with tops because I have no chest....5'5" and 115, with a 38A! At least I only have to buy one bra, the rest are camisoles and last for years!
I am 5'2 1/2 I use the sewing techniques my family taught me. I buy underwear in packs. I am big and beautiful though you may want to ask teenagers in your family what is hip to wear and where to buy. If they don't try thrift stores too. These stores rarely get clothes over the size 10, 12, and 18. The prices are cheap, and the clothes are plenty in your size.
Hi, Jonnie, you and I are just about the same size and I've been doing the same things you have (buying girls and boys sizes), also as Pamphyila suggested (buying at thrift shops). Here's another thought: I don't know what size shoe you wear, but I wear a women's size 6 and was told at a store the other day that they didn't carry any women's shoes anymore in anything smaller than size 7 and most other store were going to start doing the same! I said, "Great, where am I supposed to get my shoes?!" And she told me that a girl's (not toddler's) size 5 is the same as a women's size 6. So I looked in the girl's sizes and found a great pair of shoes for a lot less money than I would have paid for in the women's section. Good luck!
For years I wore teen bras, which I bought as discount/dollar stores.
You can also wear vintage very well, as the sizes/cuts were narrow. Ditto with clothes from consignment stores - where the designer clothes are mostly in small sizes.
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