Ask the Bean: From Slimming to Swimming – Wearing the Wide-Leg

September 2, 2007 • Magazine

Ask the Bean: From Slimming to Swimming - Wearing the Wide-Leg

Ask the Bean: From Slimming to Swimming - Wearing the Wide-Leg

Sat, 2007-09-01 17:00

Dear Bean,

I purchased several pairs of skinny pants last fall to coordinate with the trends. But now that this fall is all about the wide leg look, my wardrobe has nothing to show for it! I loved the skinny pants and am afraid the new look won’t be as flattering on me. Where can I find wide-leg pants that don’t make me look wide?

Solely Skinny

Dear Skinny,

Thin was indeed the happening trend last fall, dominating runways and wardrobes worldwide. However trends are fickle things in the world of fashion. They tend to be replaced quite quickly. So my first bit of advice to you is not to buy only into trends each season — you’ll end up without a wardrobe the next. Sure, you can splurge on a couple pieces to carry you into a fashion-confident fall, but mix it with some classics to avoid being stuck into a trend that evaporates come time change.

As you said, wide leg pants are everywhere this season. Fall seems to be all about the 1940’s masculine image — yet with higher waists and added details, the effects can be ever-so flattering to the feminine figure.

Now these stylish slacks don’t fit just one mold—they come in high or low waist, pleats or no pleats, legs wide or extra wide, and classic or edgy. For your first task: Figure out which style you like the most and more importantly, which style flatters you the best.

If you are worried that this new pant look might add a few pounds to your frame, don’t rule it out quite yet. A lot of the wide-leg pants’ higher and fitted waistlines lengthen and slim the figure — just make sure to wear a tucked-in fitted oxford or blouse to complete the look. Whatever you do, avoid loose-fitting tops — baggy on baggy results in just that: baggy.

Shoes also figure into the wide leg look. Stack heels and platforms are generally the most flattering with the larger-legged trousers, particularly since the pant style draws attention to the footwear below. Flats can get hidden underneath the fabric, conveying a more casual sweat pant look. And honestly, who would avoid the opportunity of showing off one’s shoes?

Also, when you’re trying the wide leg pants on for size, make sure to look behind you. This pant style works wonders for flattering that booty you’ve spent hours contouring during your daily workouts. And to avoid any remaining chance of fabric bulge, avoid the pleats.

After you’ve determined your deemed style, you are ready to buy into the trend. But make sure to shop around until you find that perfect pair for your style and body type. Trends may be short-lived, but they also provide plenty of merchandise to compare…and potentially purchase.

On a final note, I urge you to hold onto those skinny pants. Just as fast as the wide leg pant strutted onto the runway, the skinny pant might be following suit. Another funny thing about trends — they might evaporate with the click of a model’s stiletto, but they come back as quickly as a wardrobe change.

1. Celine Fall 2007 Runway Show (Paris)

2. Martin Grant Fall 2007 Runway Show (Paris)

3. Oscar de la Renta Wide Wool Pants

4. MaxStudio Worsted Wool Wide Leg Pant

5. Diane von Furstenberg ‘Gavin’ Melange Pants

6. L.A.M.B. ‘Sailor’ Pants

7. Walter Wide Menswear Trousers

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Replies will be posted monthly in Retail Therapy.

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