“I watched a fashion show last night,” a reader wrote me recently. “They said you should never wear Capris. I am 5' 7", long legs, slim size 8. I understand that they might not be flattering to everyone, but what about for me? I just ordered a pair online. Tell me, what do you think?”
I think it's an interesting question. For while low-rise pants tend to flatter very few women, cropped pants can work well on a variety of figures, provided they follow a few simple guidelines.
Before we get to them, however, let me define exactly style I'm referring to, so that we're all on same page.
Cropped pants, also known as pedal pushers, clam diggers, and Capris, are a style of pants that ends somewhere between knee and ankle, usually at mid-calf. They've gone in and out of fashion several times since 1950's, and are currently enjoying renewed popularity.
They are not for everyone, however.
Because of where they hit on leg, they can emphasize several things. For example:
*If you're petite, they can make you look shorter.
*If you're bottom heavy, they can make you look heavier.
*If you have short legs, they can make them look shorter.
*If you have thick ankles, they can make them look thicker.
Notice that I said, “can” in every situation. This isn't a given. Much of it can depend on color, cut, style of hem, and shoes that you choose.
Let's look at these one by one:
Dark or muted colors will make you look smaller, light or bright colors will make you look bigger. Small prints work better on small bodies, large prints work better on large or tall bodies.
The most flattering cut for trim bodies of all heights tends to be flat front with tapered legs. This style elongates body and offers a chic, uncluttered line - which is why it was favored by likes of Jacqueline Kennedy and Audrey Hepburn during their summer vacations, and promptly copied world over.