Are there any pants we wear more often than jeans? (I know I have a bit of a denim habit.)
There’s good reason, of course. As I said last week, jeans + T-shirt = weekend uniform.
And depending on the Outfit Levels acceptable at your workplace, a good pair of denim can make a great office outfit, too.
The key word, though, is “good.”
That faded pair in the back of your closet that’s seen better days? The jeans that hit right at the ankle, or have wear spots at the knees? They don’t qualify as “good” denim.
Here’s what does.
- A great cut. This is the hardest part about denim–or any pants, really. What fits on one woman’s body won’t fit on another’s. You’re really going to have to try a lot on, and once you find a brand that works for you, stick to it. How high a rise you choose depends on your comfort level, and the poochiness degree of your belly. (Mamas, you know what I’m talking about, right?) But the goal is not to look like your hips are swaddled in denim. And stick to a boot cut to start. The straighter the leg, the narrower your hips will look. It’s just flattering on everyone.
- A dark wash. Especially if you’re going to pull off wearing these to the office, look for a dark rinse. It makes the denim look more expensive, and all the parts of you wrapped in it look smaller. Once you get the hang of it, you can branch out into different washes, or even colors.
- The right length. Oh, this is a subject of much debate. There is a camp that declares all pants must be so long as to come within millimeters of grazing the floor. And there is a further subset that even goes so far as to hem some pants for flats and others for heels! I am not that strict, but you do want your jeans to be as long as possible. For the same reason you want a boot cut, the longer your leg line, the more flattering it is to you. If your jeans stop at the top of your shoe or just below your ankle, you’re visually cutting your legs shorter. This is once again a case where you will want to employ the services of your tailor, unless you are so lucky as to find a pair that fit you well *and* are just the right length.
None of the above requires you to go out and drop a lot of money on a premium denim brand, by the way. You can get a perfectly decent pair of dark bootcut jeans at the Old Navies of the world. You might even find them at the thrift or consignment store. And curvy girls might discover that Levi’s Curve ID jeans are their best bet.
If you do want to go premium, haunt the sample sale sites and Bluefly. You can regularly find pricier brands for about half off. I’ve scored Paige, Hudson and Habitual jeans this way. (Did I mention my denim habit?)
So here’s your (non-required) homework for this week: Go through your current denim collection. Do any of the pairs violate the above guidelines? Then toss ‘em or use ‘em for housework, but don’t make them your go-to jeans.
If none of them are quite right, then you’ve got a little shopping to do, no?
Coming next week: Fab Mom Style Upgrade for flats.
What to buy
$40 - macys.com
$45 - macys.com
$12 - jcpenney.com
$99 - cusp.com
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