I receive many email requests from clients and followers sharing styling dilemmas and seeking my opinion. Questions like “How do I wear this?”, and “What do you think of this latest trend?”. It got me to thinking… How can I continue to help my loyal clients and followers while at the same time, inspiring others and helping those who may be wondering the same thing but were too afraid to ask? The answer… A new feature service (coming soon) called “ASK AL” !
In the meantime, I thought I’d answer the most recent request which was asked via Facebook from a beautiful young woman – a client from way-back – who still keeps in touch even after all these years (I love that, by the way!). Here ’tis…
Well Claire, as I said briefly on Facebook last night… “Yes you sure can wear this look, even if you’re not super-model tall (I mean who is?)” and here a few of my key points to keep in mind so that you can pull off boyfriend denim with style and confidence:
My Key Styling Tips for Boyfriend Jeans
- Boyfriend jeans are meant for casual wear so keep that in mind when choosing where to wear them and with what. To avoid looking LIKE your boyfriend, try balancing the masculine look with more feminine pieces on top, or with pretty shoes (i.e. platforms or ballet flats).
- Boyfriend jeans can look great on many body types because the fit is relaxed and casual and doesn’t tend to highlight any specific body part but…beware the over-relaxed look that quite simply can just look sloppy.
- I prefer boyfriend jeans worn rolled up with a cuff approx 3 inches wide, sitting just above the ankle. When worn longer than this, they can look quite dowdy/frumpy and make the legs appear thick and shapeless. Far too masculine.
- Keep it straight – While boyfriend jeans have many different cuts – bootcut, flared or straight, straight is my favourite as it lends itself best to the rolled up cuff which I think is imperative if you want to avoid looking too masculine (see pic below).
- When wearing ankle boots, ensure the jeans are rolled up to show off the boots – but not too high! (See the example below)
- Many boyfriend jeans are ‘distressed’ (ripped) so with all that vintage distraction going on, it’s best to streamline your look with simple tops in a block colour – and don’t overdo the accessories either.
- Belts are almost a must-have accessory with boyfriend jeans as they cinch in the hip/waist area and show off curves. Take your pick of belt styles really – no rules here. The key is that you show off the belt and if layering don’t layer too long so that you lose all your shape above the waist (see the pic of Rachel Zoe below).
- And what about shoes? My picks – which help balance the masculinity of the style – are ballets, gladiators, wedges and platforms. Heels are fine too but beware overly pointy-toed kitten heels and stilettos; a rounder toe is better. For winter, go for ankle boots but with a heel (cuban/stacked styles are everywhere now) but make sure your jeans are rolled up to the right length to show off the boot (not worn long/over the top of the boot, as shown in the pics above). For a casual/preppy look go for a fitted shirt with ballet pumps. For a super-casual look, wear with cons (converse style sneakers) and a simple tee. Add a cropped cardi for extra retro style and maybe a scarf for extra warmth.
Want More? I Thought You’d Never Ask…
Ok, so Rachel Zoe (above) is the Queen of Boho, and a damn good stylist BUT is it just me or does this just not do it for you? This is where I find Boho becomes HOBO. Too sloppy, can’t see any shape or form, overpowers her small frame. Actually, I think this outfit makes her look positively unwell – or like she’s going undercover to hide from the paparazzi. Something this mere mortal never really has to worry about, I guess!
Not really loving this (above). Shoes are a little too conservative – almost nanna – and the wrong height. Either go totally flat (ballets) or high (heels/wedges/platforms). Her slim frame is also overpowered by the over-sized jumper. Although quite feminine, it needs more balance (volume on top, go skinny on bottom – and vice versa). BUT…There are some good bits to take note of: Her hair looks pretty and I like the colour of the jumper with the grey tee under (quirky balance of feminine & masculine). The saving-grace with this look is the overall femininity and softer textures mixed with modern twists (studded oversized clutch and statement necklace).
So, I’m just not really loving the whole stockings under jeans thing (above). Not loving the mitchy-matchy stockings and cardi either. And rust teamed with black and white stripes – nuh. The big flower brooch is also a bit too strong a focal point. I guess, in all, there’s just a little too much going on. ALTHOUGH – their are good bits! She is super cute, has great hair and it’s clear she’s put a lot of thought and effort into her outfit. She is also very well groomed and exudes confidence, and at the end of the day that’s what having true style is all about it, isn’t it?
If you’ve got any style dilemma’s you want solved, don’t be shy! ASK AL! Just leave your comments here on the blog (until I get a separate ASK AL page up for you!) and I promise I’ll answer with lots of helpful tips just like I did here. P.S. Claire – I hope this helped?!