As someone who is very petite, I’ve been shopping in the children’s department out of necessity for most of my life. In fact, I’ve never been able to buy a heavy-duty winter coat straight off the rack...until I came across an amazing shearling topper in the kids’ section at a Burberry outlet store last year.
But the secret is that even if you’re taller than 5 feet, it’s still worth taking a peek at the children's department these days, because designers and brands are offering some well-made, sophisticated clothing at amazing price points. (It’s not unusual to see cashmere sweaters, leather shorts, and shirting made from fancy European fabrics in some of these collections for a fraction of what their full-sized counterparts cost.) Granted, you’ll have more luck fitting into some of these pieces if you’re on the shorter side and are of average or slim build, but a handful of labels go up to size 18 youth, which can work up to a woman's size 4. If you're up for it, here are the brands to start exploring.