I am 5’11’’ tall. Inside leg 36”, maybe slightly more, with arms resembling Mr Tickle – especially on a netball court. And I really struggle to buy clothes.
I play netball with enough tall women, some taller than me, to know that I am not alone in this dilemma. By no means do I profess to be a fashionista but I’ve come a long way from secondary school jibes about “ankle swingers” and I certainly won’t wear trousers that are too short any more. So, I thought it would be useful to share a few of the places where I have managed to find jumpers with sleeves that cover my hands and trousers with legs that reach the floor, even with shoes.
I have divided my recommendations in to two categories based solely on my own experience of trying to find casual and sports clothes that not only fit well, but that I also want to wear.
I would love for you to share your tips in the comments below as I’m always on the look out for inspiration.
1. Fat Face -8 Exchange St, Manchester, M2 7HA
I think it’s becoming an obsession that’s gone way beyond long sleeves. Sleeve length can be amazing on jumpers, hoodies, and coats. Good quality and not too expensive – even better if you catch a sale. You do need to try things on though – they don’t have a “tall” section so they are not all extra long. As for trousers, some styles offer up to 34” leg but sadly I haven’t seen any longer.
2. TK Maxx -106-122 Market Street, Manchester, M1 1WA
My most recent discovery, and the inspiration for writing this post. I have just managed to find two beautiful jumpers, with exceedingly long sleeves, on the same day. I don’t know what made me look at them but these jumpers are perfect.
From Gilly Hicks, Sydney (£19.99)
and Gharani Strok, London (£39.99 – 100% cashmere)
3. River Island – Arndale Centre, Manchester, M4 3AQ
It may be just because it’s easier with skinnies but my recent purchases of the long length (34”) jeans are great, with a really comfy fit. I have doubts about the length of the straighter or bootcut styles.
4. New Look – Arndale Centre, Manchester, M4 3AJ
I have been successful with jeans, joggers and cardis. I may have missed it but my local stores don’t seem to have the “tall” section any more. Thankfully, it is still available online. Designed for 5’9″ and over, the prices are affordable. Shame they don’t provide inside leg measurements, so I expect them to be trial and error. As a tall girl, I’m used to that.
5. Topshop – Arndale Centre, Manchester, M4 3AQ
I am sure I didn’t imagine 38” inside leg jeans when I last went to the Oxford Street store, but it was a few years ago. The Tall range is aimed at women 5’7″ and over. 36” leg is their standard “tall” and is a good fit. My Moto jeans have lasted for ages and the prices are much more reasonable than they used to be.
1. Decathlon -George’s Rd, Stockport, Greater Manchester, SK4 1DN
Great for Kalenji running leggings and hoodies, B’twin cycling jackets, and Wed’ze, adjustable length, salopettes. Again you need to try them on as they do not market themselves as being “tall”, but the tops with thumb holes in particular, are fantastic.
Maybe one day I’ll be able to buy casual trousers that aren’t jeans – here’s hoping.
In the meantime, please share your experiences and tips and, feel free to confess if you’ve ever felt like sewing on the bits that short people cut off – I’ve not tried it yet, but many times have I been tempted!