Pretty, Polished, Perfect.: How To: Choose Your Pant Length

Sunday, October 7, 2012

How To: Choose Your Pant Length

The reason why stylists (real and in-person) exist, is because no one is the exact same.  You could have the same width of calves as I do, but maybe that maximum width is higher or lower on the leg.  Our thighs may be the same circumference, but mine could be wider.  Thus, it's better to get an in-person consultation.

There are some rules (loose, because no one is the exact same!)  The ideal ankle pant (the best example is from Audrey Hepburn in Funny Face) is technically supposed to be approximately one inch above the center of your ankle bone.

Any higher and it can make your ankles look.....less skinny (I have this particular problem.)  If you are short and thin, this ankle pant look probably flatters you.  If you are short and not-quite-as-thin (or if you are curvaceous, mmmmeeee-ooooowwww) it will most likely make you look shorter and wider.  If you are tall and thin, good luck finding the perfect pair of ankle pants.  Chances are, they will be too short, lol!  If you are tall and not-quite-as-thin (or again, curvaceous) they can actually help diminish your height (if that's a good thing for you!)

The best thing you can do (besides ask a very good friend) is to have someone (that you trust) take your picture in the pair of pants you are not-quite certain about.  A photograph never lies.  In fact, photographs can be super harsh (picking up all the details the mere mortal eye does not always perceive); chances are, if you look good in a photograph, you look even better to the human eye.

I don't know what kind of legs you have, but my thighs are.....full (that's putting it nicely,) my knees are um, not all nice and shapely, and my calves are wider than they are not.  Don't think I'm putting myself down; I call it being realistic.  Knowing the reality of them, I prefer the slenderizing (is that even a word??) and enhancing effect that ankle-length hems and high heels have on my calves.  I also know that creating a line just under my knee makes my calves appear proportionately curvy, whereas shorts/skirts that hit right above my knee actually make my knees look their worst and my calves a little less shapely.

Photo courtesy of Gene Starr / I need to have these re-hemmed to be just a bit longer!
When I decided to do 31 days of Pro-Styling Tips, I pulled out an old trunk from college days.  Back in the olden days, we didn't have Pinterest (heck, we still had dial-up!) and so we did things the hard way.  I lugged around a giant spiral-bound notebook, full of inspiration boards and other useful information.  It's been fun to reminisce about those days!

What do you think?  Are you a no-ankle, no-capri type?

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