How to wear pale skinny jeans when you’re not skinny



Most of us have now figured out the trick to wearing skinny jeans when you’re not particularly, ahem, skinny, is to wear a high waisted or medium rise cut to prevent muffin top, and it’s ugly cousin, the dreaded camel humps.  Not sure what camel humps are?  It’s a Kimba term to describe the large mounds that appear above the waistband of pants that are just too tight, but from the back view.  You can thank me later

The other trick is to wear dark denim and longer line flattering tops.  But what if you secretly yearn to wear pale skinnies?    I’ve got the answer for you!


I’ve been going crazy for coloured denim skinnies, including the most gorgeous floral pair from ASOS.  I’ve even ventured into coloured cord skinnies.  But one look I’ve shied away from is the very pale colours.  That was until I saw these gorgeous J Brand Super Skinny Coated Sparkle Lilac from The Iconic reduced from $245 to about $70.  One pair left in my size, $10 discount voucher applied, and before I knew it, they were in my hot little hands.

But whilst I simply loved them – lilac! sparkle! coated denim! sparkle! absolutely bargainous! sparkle! – I was unsure of how exactly I was going to wear them without making my legs look like two uncooked pork sausages, albeit sparkly uncooked pork sausages.

Just for your benefit (and, um, mine), I tried out a few outfits.  I’ve figured out the best way to rock them is to make yourself look as long and lean as possible.



How I achieved this was by wearing similar pale coloured simple shoes and adding detail with long dark tops layered over each other.  How does this work?  Well, by wearing the pale coloured shoes with the pale coloured pants, I’m continuing the line.  If I’d worn dark shoes, it would have emphasised the difference between my pale denim-clad legs and my feet.



Adding the long line patterned top covers the thigh and tummy regions so that the slimmest part of my legs are on display in the pale denim.  As the lower layer is a scoop neck, it displays my décolletage, which is another visual distraction technique.



The next layer of a long patterned kimono-style dress worn as a jacket – a long flowy cardigan, light car coat or cape would work equally well –  draws the eye upward and continues the long lean lines.  The pattern on pattern creates interest and the open jacket visually slims the body.



In the above image, I’ve switched the the kimono jacket for a cropped chunky cardigan.  This achieves the same objective  with the long patterned top doing its great job of disappearing my thigh-tacular and tummy-tastic regions, whilst the boxy shape of the chunky cardigan – a Chanel-inspired jacket would also work perfectly – stops just on my hipbones.  This wide-over-long trick creates another great visual illusion.  The actual cardigan, with the fabulous tangerine colour and multicoloured buttons, performs another magic trick by drawing the eye upwards and away from those pale pink thighs.



My J Brand Sparkle Lilac’s first outing was for Boyo’s birthday party.  I’ve teamed what ICE call a skater dress and what I call a swing top, which does an excellent job of emphasising the good bits and disguising my not so favourite bits, but would certainly scare small children if I wore it as a dress.

Because we were going bowling and I really loathe bowling shoes, I wore some old school Reebok trainers, breaking my own rule outlined above about wearing a similarly coloured shoe to extend the leg line.  I’ve got around this by cuffing the jean to reveal my ankle, the slimmest part of my leg, and I think it works.  Not least because the trainers are just too cool for school.



Another outfit featuring pale skinnies.  This time, Rag & Bone skinny cords in Eggshell (thank you Shopbop 70% off sale).  The white toecaps of the Converse tie back in with the pale pants, and the long swing top in bright cobalt teamed with an amazing cape creates the same visual illusion as the printed tank and kimono.

Have you been brave enough to try pale skinnies? Do you think these tips might help you?  Are you obsessed with 70% designer sales like me?

Outfit Details:

  • J Brand Sparkle Lilac Skinny Jeans from The Iconic
  • Twentyone printed tank – thrifted from Red Cross Rozelle
  • Something Else by Natalie Wood Kimono Knot Dress gifted from Fashionista Depot (now sold out sorry)
  • Dotti peachy faux snakeskin flats – thrifted from Red Cross Rozelle
  • Marni cardigan – thrifted from eBay
  • ICE skater dress – bought on sale from ICE Design
  • Reebok green suede trainers – thrifted from Red Cross Rozelle
  • Sussan cobalt top – bought on sale from Sussan
  • Helix by Lisa Stack cape – swished at the Red Cross Rozelle inaugural Clothes Exchange Event
  • Converse – thrifted from eBay


Kimba Likes Keeping it Real Policy:

You can click here to read the Kimba Likes Keeping it Real Policy.  I was not remunerated for this post and all items were purchased by my own fair hand, excluding the lovely Something Else piece, which I received, along with other items, for this Fashionista Depot post.   You can trust Kimba Likes to keep it real.  You can click here to read the Kimba Likes Affiliate Disclosure Policy.



  • How to Wear Purple Skinny Jeans - 3 May 2013 - 6.01 am

    […] purple. I love the idea of wearing the same colour shoes as your jeans to give your legs length (thanks for that gem Kimba). Add some other splashes of colour on your lips (and maybe your fingers) and you are ready for a […]ReplyCancel

  • Kelly McLuckie - 26 April 2013 - 5.27 am

    What a brilliant post! I love my pale denim skinnys and follow some similar rules – pale shoes, tonal flow in the tops, etc. Some good ideas here for me though. I note above you’re a kiwi girl; do you still live in NZ or in Australia now?ReplyCancel

    • Kim-Marie Williams - 26 April 2013 - 6.07 am

      Thanks Kelly and welcome to Kimba Likes. I live in Sydney now. It’s been nearly 20 years! But I still am a proud Kiwi and I still don’t have Australian citizenship! ReplyCancel

  • Sarah - Style Unearthed - 25 April 2013 - 9.42 pm

    You look great! I have little children with a penchant for Vegemite, so I think I will need to steer clear of pale coloured pants for the next few years 😉ReplyCancel

  • Catherine RodieBlagg - 25 April 2013 - 6.39 pm

    Love the shoe tip – very clever. Still don’t think I can pull them off.ReplyCancel

  • workingwomenaustralia - 25 April 2013 - 6.05 pm

    You are absolutely ROCKING those skinny jeans! I just can’t bring myself to do it. As much as I’ve been told by the styling Godesses, I still haven’t moved over to the dark side…one day!ReplyCancel

    • Kim-Marie Williams - 25 April 2013 - 9.20 pm

      One day we will be in the same city at the same time and we will go shopping. Cause you know it’s what I do. 🙂 I will get you in a pair and we shall see! xReplyCancel

  • B - 25 April 2013 - 5.47 pm

    I love this look! And I love the way you have explained the whys behind it. Loving the same coloured shoe, longer leg concept…

    Since gaining weight, I have realised that I don’t wear as much colour as I used to – especially PALE colours! On the BOTTOM – no way!

    Love the cardigan. Very cute.ReplyCancel

  • Janet from Redland City Living - 25 April 2013 - 12.56 pm

    Very cute! I still haven’t managed to pull off wearing my bright purple skinnies though so I don’t think I’m ready for pastels 😉ReplyCancel

    • B - 25 April 2013 - 5.45 pm

      Excuse me Janet… You get those purple skinnies out and wear them! I read your post about them and you MUST wear them! Add a black and white long top and some cute silver flats for cute mid-season look. OR – go for a longer line white/off white shirt (Ben Sherman have some GREAT ones) and then add a shorter black jacket. You will lengthen your line with the longer shirt over your skinny jeans, but add a bit of chic with the shorter length black (or grey or navy) jacket.

      Oh, sorry…. this is not my blog! Kimba – I am with you – we need to get Janet into those jeans. It must be our mission. #fashionSTATReplyCancel

    • Kim-Marie Williams - 25 April 2013 - 5.09 pm

      We should make that our mission, Janet. We’re going to get you to wear them if it kills us! 🙂ReplyCancel

      • Kim-Marie Williams - 25 April 2013 - 9.23 pm

        Yup, what B said. Start it simply with a look like my patterned tank and cropped cardigan up there. The trick to that tank is that it is long enough to cover all the bits but loose enough to create movement but tight enough that it flatters the bust line. There are loads of them out there in every price range. Next is the cropped simple shape jacket. Maybe you have a denim jacket or a blazer you’ve only worn to the office before? Try one of those on. Please? For me and B? Look, it even rhymes! xReplyCancel

        • Janet from Redland City Living - 26 April 2013 - 9.24 am

          LOL you girls are hilarious!!! To be honest it’s still a bit hot but I *promise* I will let you know WHEN (not IF) I wear them!!!! xxxReplyCancel

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