Skinny jeans may not be down and out for the count this season, but wide-legged pants are making a comeback in a big way. They’ve never really been out of style, but since they’re on trend this season, they’re more available at all price points. For our Style Edit Over 50 this month, Cindy and I are tackling wide-leg pants.
Can a woman over 50 wear wide-leg pants in a flattering way? Absolutely! Let’s look at how to do it, even if you’re short…I am just 5’4″.
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The secret to wearing wide-leg pants is all in the proportions you use to create a flattering silhouette. When a pant is wide, your top needs to be closer to the body and no longer than your waist or high hip. In addition, many have a high-rise which makes a shorter top even easier to wear, including the new cropped sweaters.
Wide-leg crops can look similar to the culottes we used to wear back in the day, depending on the length. They look great with boots in the winter, mules in the spring, and flat sandals in the summer. These jeans are available in regular and petite. I bought the regular because I have such a long torso I need the highest rise I can get for muffin top comfort.
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In general, the wider the leg, the softer the fabric should be. Linen, rayon, bamboo, polyester, lightweight silk, and cotton make wonderful palazzo pants because they swish when you move and drape beautifully. Many of these come with an elastic waist which is important to conceal. Visible elastic waistbands are as unflattering as visible panty lines and are best to avoid. If you’re less than thrilled with your waistline, you can tuck in your top and blouse it over the waistband slightly or tie a button-down shirt below the waist like I’m doing here.
My Birdies mules are incredibly comfortable. This Songbird style is available with an adorable pom-pom on top this year, but that’s not my style for outerwear, so I’m hoping they come out with other embroidered patterns this spring.
Can the classic dresser wear wide-leg pants? Katharine Hepburn and Marlene Deitrick certainly did and looked amazing. Their outfits always looked polished, totally classic, and often included a belt. Coco Chanel’s wider leg sailor pants are legendary and a look that’s often duplicated today like these Talbots jeans.
These wide-leg denim jeans nod to Chanel’s famous sailor pants with the double-buttons up the front and wide hem. The buttons are just for show, and the zipper works.
Can petite women wear wide-leg pants?
How about petite women? Shorter women often look better in a wide-leg pant in stiffer fabrics because they add structure. They will also elongate the look of your leg if you can wear them with a small heel. Some women like to puddle their wide-leg pants, but I don’t recommend it for petite women because it could end up looking like you’re too short for your pants 🙂
With full-leg crop pants, I prefer a shoe, slide, or sandal that allows some skin to show on the top of the foot and ankle. Soes with a low cam,p like a ballet flat are especially nice with crops.
DO WIDE-LEG PANTS MAKE YOU LOOK HEAVY
Wide-legged pants conceal the shape of your legs, so they’re great for camouflaging heavy thighs. They won’t make you look heavier than you are if you get the proportions right. I love wide-leg pants because they add balance to my broad shoulders plus they add an element of drama to my outfits that I adore.
Some great places to find wide-leg pants are Anthropologie, ASOS, Madewell, Eileen Fisher, J.Jill, and Nordstrom.
Have you dabbled with wide-leg pants lately?
Head over to Cindy Hattersley Design and check out how she’s styling wide leg pants.
Thanks for reading ladies and remember to wear what makes you feel confident.