Fashion notes: crop it like it’s hot with culottes
I have to admit, I really didn’t anticipate the culottes trend to last longer than a season or two, but turns out that I was quite mistaken. Culottes have survived the past year, and while they may not be around for the long haul, they will certainly outlast the dying days of summer and will also be a key silhouette for the upcoming autumn season.
When cropped trousers first crept on to the runways, I initially dismissed it as a fleeting fad that would only appeal to tomboys and lovers of minimalism. Today, however, there are tons of culottes to choose from, suiting quite a range of personal styles.
The types of culottes that speak to me personally are of two extremes – those that are crafted in denim, and those that feature feminine prints. Denim culottes – or essentially wide-leg cropped jeans – can be worn with almost anything, but I would style them with a crisp white shirt and a statement handbag or pair of shoes such as mules or backless loafers. Silky floral numbers, meanwhile, look great with fitted T-shirts. Culottes are the one type of trouser I have trouble pairing with trainers – there’s no hiding your shoes, so make them pretty; pointy heels are sublime, while clunky Nikes will look dreadful.
Culottes look best on slender figures, because they tend to accentuate the waist and legs. If height isn’t one of your strongest assets, then culottes may not be the most flattering of trousers for you, and might highlight your lack of stature.
Experiment with ultra-wide cuts during the summer and seek out wools and tweeds for the cooler months. The most attractive cuts are high-waisted, while low-rise versions are more casual and low-key.
For some high-end visual inspiration, take your style cues from the autumn/winter runway shows of Blumarine, Fendi, Gucci, Ralph Lauren and Jill Stuart.