How To Wear Wide-Legged Pants

Photographed by Victoria Adamson.
By Chelsey Burnside

Hands up if you’ve tried on a pair of flares without feeling a little Donna from That ‘70s Show. Or worse, your mom from the ‘70s IRL. We’re going to take that deafening e-silence as proof: The wide-leg pant is one of those tricky trends usually best left to thee of Joan Smalls proportions. But, since we’ve spotted sidewalk-grazing denim and triangular trousers on the likes of 5-foot-1 Eva Longoria and the forever-billowy Olsens, we (reluctantly) decided it was about time we traded in our twig jeans for something a little more large and in charge.

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It’s a rare breed who’s managed to master the wide-leg, so first we polled a few breezy-ankle proponents on how they do it without looking like one of those Barbie cone cakes. Here’s how Rachael Wang, Jayne Min and Pandora Sykes style XXL bottoms (hint: it’s all in the shoes).

Pandora Sykes, Fashion Features Editor at The Sunday Times Style Magazine

Preferred Length:
"Cropped! [I] am short."

How To Style:
"I do think they are hard if you aren't narrow, I've gotta be honest. But I think [pair] with a high ankle boot and a longer-line belted jacket."

Designers To Look For:
"I like Rachel Comey's denim ones and I have a great cropped denim pair by Hobbs, a U.K. high-street brand."

Key Shoes:
"Gucci horsebit ankle boots."

What NOT To Do:
"Flat shoes are very difficult unless you are tall — BIG no-no for me! And, I would say baggy jumpers are difficult, too."

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Photographed by Victoria Adamson.
Jayne Min, Blogger, Stop it Right Now

On Experimenting:
"I don't discriminate when it comes to wide-legged trousers. I appreciate all styles — cropped, long, pleated, cuffed — the wider the better."

Exactly How To Wear:
"I like to wear wide-legged trousers two ways: with a fitted top or jacket that hits at the waist, or with a loose top or coat falls that below the hips."

Designers To Go For:
"I have a giant satin pair from Adam Lippes that I love and a great patchwork leather pair from Rodebjer, and I'm super excited for a grey flannel pair from Sechung that should be mine any day now."

Perfect Shoe:
"I personally like the 'no feet' look with heels or heeled boots so you get some leg length. Or, with sneakers, but I make sure the toe shows a bit."

On Not Following The Rules: 

"I personally don't like a lot of bulk up top with wide-legged bottoms, but really, there's no rule. If you want to wear them, be free to enjoy them however you want. Who needs rules!"

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Rachael Wang, Fashion Market Director, Style.com

What Works In A Photo Vs. IRL:
"I love the look and idea of an oversized wide-leg trouser that pools around your sneakers or moroccan slippers, but this really only works in a photo. The way that I actually wear wide-legged trousers is cropped to about an inch above the ankle bone."

Styling:
"Honestly, I love the full-on oversized look. I tend to wear full-cut pants with a loose silky blouse (not tucked-in) or a cozy oversized sweater. It's quite flattering to add a cropped and fitted jacket or blazer. The most important thing is to show those bare ankles."

Labels To Look For:
"I love ChloéJunya WatanabeRochas, and Tibi for wide trousers."

Alternative Footwear Options:
"I love them with slides, mules, and chunky sandals."

On Forgetting The Rules (Seriously Tho):
"I don't believe in rules. Fashion is meant to be fun!"

Next: Editors' Picks: Save Vs. Splurge
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