spring translations: the pant


i’ve been struggling with how to approach spring trends this year.  as regular readers know, i try to devote some time every season to the major trends, and how best to incorporate them.  but this spring, frankly, most of the “trends” are heinous…not to mention hard to pull off, unless you happen to be an anorexic teenager.  and the more i thought about how to spread the word about what’s hot this spring, the more annoyed i got about the idea of telling you all to wear things i find ridiculous.

it all came to a head when i picked up the march issue of harper’s bazaar, in which i was told that the flattering drape of a flared pant simply “must” be replaced by a baggy-hipped, tapered leg trouser.  are you all familiar with this trend?  the one in which the trousers are pleated and hugely baggy in the hips, then taper to the ankle, at which point you may actually roll them up to cuff them even higher?  like the boyfriend jean concept, only with trousers.  pleated trousers.  

now, if you happen to be built like a 13-year-old boy, straight and thin as a rail, then dear reader…please, carry on.  in fact, embrace it.  you’ll be the envy of everyone around.  for the rest of us – please, ignore pant trends this spring.  i can think of few better ways than pleats to instantly add 20 lbs to your hips.  tack on the baggy factor and the taper, and you’re basically creating a big pear shape on your bottom half…whether it was there to start with or not.

i suggest instead embracing the spirit of the trend.  the boyfriend jean can be done well, without looking sloppy…and often without shopping at all.  on a whim, i grabbed my ancient faded wash j.crew jeans out of the tippy top of my closet (where they’d been relegated to the “yardwork wear” pile).  sure enough, i rolled up the cuffs, and presto – scarlett johannsen in “he’s just not that into you”.  okay, not quite…but you get the idea.  please, no pegging or forced tapering in any way, and don’t go too baggy – a clean, straight line is universally more flattering than a curved line on your bottom half.  these levis would work splendidly.  oh, and if you’re over 25, “destroyed” (ie, torn) jeans are not okay.

you can try the very same thing with a pair of menswear-inspired trousers that you already own – this version from banana republic would be ideal.  just make sure it’s a straight leg, not a flare, or it won’t work.  add a belt to cinch, up the menswear quotient with a button-down shirt and possibly a vest, and add a piece of chunky jewelry to remind people you are, actually, a very chic woman.  done.

at the end of the day, i think the biggest mistake any of us can make is exchanging fit for trend.  if it doesn’t look good on you, it doesn’t matter how hip it is.  there’s a reason i have drawers full of boot cut jeans, and not a skinny jean in sight:  they’re horrid on me, and i know it.  learn what works on you, be honest with yourself about it, and you’ll look fabulous every day, whether you’re wearing the new “trendy” pant or not.  think katharine hepburn, who looks as chic and stylish today as she did 50 years ago.  now that’s a lesson in following trends if ever there was one.

okay, now that that’s out of my system, i’m curious – what do you all think about the spring pant trends?  am i the only one that can hardly wait for fall?

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2 comments on “spring translations: the pant

  1. Sal

    I ADORE this post. Seriously. While I understand that all bodies cannot carry all trends, it seems like the latest pant trends are MEANT to be exclusionary. How can anyone with curves do pleats or pegs or skinnies without feeling horrendous?

    I’ll cuff, but I won’t peg. And as a 32-year-old, I won’t be caught dead in destroyed denim.

  2. Roxy

    AMEN, sister. I hate those fashion shows where they tell you how to ‘do’ the new trends, when they are clearly not flattering for most women’s bodies. (Skinny jeans with flats – I’m talking to you.) This is a much more practical post, especially for thise of us over 25.

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