I debuted my first pair of flared jeans since the early 2000s in the weekend. For a clothing item that was so comfortable to wear, I was surprisingly out of my comfort zone. I’ve lived in skinny jeans and boyfriend jeans for so long that it took some getting used to.
Flared jeans are not bell bottoms – 1960s bell bottoms were looser through the thighs than modern flares. They’re not bootcut jeans – which are more like a straight cut jean with a slight taper from the knee.
Flared jeans are more fitted through the thighs with a distinct flare from the knee to the hem.
I love a pair of skinnies. I adore a pair of boyfriend jeans. I’ll rock a pair of carrot leg jeans. Trouser jeans even have a place in my wardrobe. I’ll even wear a pair of straights (I like skinny straights). I’m not fond of wide legged jeans – wide from the thighs down to the hem – as they make me look wide. However, a wide legged draped pants style channels 1940s elegance. I’m on the lookout for a pair.
But the jean style I really loathe – and will never ever wear again – is bootcut jeans. A bootcut jean is the work of the devil.
This is relatively controversial as they are known as the universally flattering jean. I think they’re universally ugly, myself.
Why I don’t like bootcut jeans
Bootcut jeans are wider through the thigh and narrower through the bottom of the leg, than a pair of flared jeans. I think they often look like they don’t fit properly. If you want to look like you have wider thighs, then bootcut jeans are for you.
Why I don’t like bootcut jeans is that they make lots of legs actually look bigger than they really are. They’re particularly unflattering in a softer stretchy denim, where they sort of flap around the legs.
I went out and about in the weekend, and found myself on a denim mission. I noticed how often bootcut jeans were worn a little bit too short, so any leg lengthening effect is ruined. High waisted straight leg jeans are having a fashion moment – they’re called Mom Jeans and are worn by all the groovy young things. Love some fashion irony!
I think bootcut jeans are the new Mom Jeans – and not in a good way. They’re not cool and they’re not flattering.
Women have been told for years that a pair of bootcut jeans will balance out your hips. A floor length pair of beautifully cut wide legged trousers will do that. So will a worn-to-the-floor pair of flared jeans. Teamed with a platform soled shoe, the leg lengthening ability of a pair of flared jeans cannot be underestimated.
If you want to balance out a pair of hips, then a mid rise pair of flared jeans with a fitted thigh and floor length flared leg from the knee will be your best best. Bootcut jeans don’t achieve this balance because they’re too loose through the thigh and not wide enough at the base to fulfil the balancing objective.
Both are hard to wear without heels or platforms though. Check out my tips for the best shoes for flared jeans.
I saw a groovy granny in the weekend wearing a pair of jeans, a Breton striped tee and a natty scarf tied around her neck, with a beret. I sold her a fitted white blazer at my Rozelle Markets stall and she rocked it! I cannot get over the adorableness of a padded baby bottom in a pair of teensy jeans. What’s your favourite style of jeans?
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