Hello all! Its been in style for a couple of years now, but not everyone is totally confident in their tights/shorts pairing abilities. It’s a very basic outfit choice that barely requires thinking in the morning. Shorts with tights are the new jeans.
Above, I’ve photographed myself wearing the same lower half of the flannel shirt outfit from two weeks ago. In place of the tunic, I’ve switched in a decorative t-shirt and a black vest from H&M. As mentioned in a previous post, the boots were $50 at WetSeal, the sheer black tights were $1 at Walmart, and the shorts are cut-offs from an old pair of jeans. In this post, I’ll inspire you with a few simple and a few more edgy takes on this simple style.
Here are two really easy versions of this look. The first combines ideas from two of my recent entries; a pair of cut-offs or inexpensive store-bought denim shorts and a plaid/flannel shirt. To make a simple country outfit like this and add an urban flair, she’s paired it with sheer black stockings with a run or two in them, and a pair of loafers.
The second look is a little more mainstream. What I mean by this is that without the opaque black leggings and scarf (see my post on scarves), this outfit would look a little boring and out-dated. All of these things look like clothes I wore 5 years ago. But if you’re like me, you know that clothes from a few seasons ago are not immediately ruled out. Keep simple outfit staples like tank-tops, basic shorts, and winter boots because these things are versitile and timeless. By adding two extremely basic and inexpensive accessories, the leggings and scarf, these old clothes are now brought up to today’s standard of edgy fashion.
As much as I never thought I’d be glad to say it, certain 90s fashions are coming back. One of these is the large sweatshirt (see previous post). If you happen to still own and fit sweatshirts you wore ten years ago, this is a simple matter of digging each of these items out of the back of the closet. If you trashed all your big sweatshirts a few years ago like I did in 8th grade, you may have to check thrift stores for a cheap throw-back from yester-year. Pairing a large sweatshirt (horizontal stripes being another thrend of the 90s) with a pair of cut-offs, opaque black leggings and loafers or flats, you have a quick and easy vintage look for chilly days.
On that note, you can go even larger with the shirt. Try a sweatshirt that’s entirely too large for you, cut off the collar so it hangs off the shoulder, taper it to your form with a thick belt, and contrast the large top with a pair of cut-offs and sleak tights. Something like the second look shown here is more of a one-of a kind find. Whether you shop thrift or boutiques, you can probably get lucky and find a loose-fitting sweatshirt with something unique about it like sequins or rhinestones. (first photo submitted by EllaCheu).
There are all sorts of quirky tops you can use to off-set the basic denim shorts/tights combination. A loose tunic or a wide-fit short-cropped top, for example, are both vintage fashion taken from the 80s and 90s. Choose the mood of your look through choice of color and shoes.
Create more of a school-girl or business look with the shorts and leggings by choosing a non -denim along with things like vests and blouses. Choose neutral colors for this style like black white and gray combinations, or browns and tans. (photo submitted by confessi0nal)
As we have moved away from the denim topic for a moment, more of a classic look is achieved by selecting shorts made of slack material such as tweed or pinstripe. Just by simply replacing the denim with something more formal, you change the whole feel of the outfit.
Here, a similar pair of businessy, slack material high waisted shorts are dressed up and then down. The photo shows how the similar pair of shorts can have a nerd-chic/rocker look by switching out the semi-formalwear for a fun t-shirt and what I called ‘skippy’ sneakers in the 90s. Also, see my post on the knitted beret she’s used in her ensemble.
Another style I used to be really unlikely to be caught dead in, which has now come back with new flavor, is high-waisted jeans. More to the point, cut-offs made from high-waised jeans rather than the actual full length jeans themselves. I’m sure the mall boutiques will be selling a version of this soon enough, but in the mean time, save money and be ahead of the trends by getting a pair of 80s/90 jeans from the thrift shop and cutting them into shorts. As you can see above, simply choosing the color and opaqueness of the tights and style of the shoes can make for a totally different look each time.
^^A really cute look for those cool fall days before it gets too cold to do without a real coat, try throwing a sleak blazer on top of your shorts/tights/t-shirt look. The denim and t-shirt dress down the more formal looking blazer, tights and loafers.
Here are two very different looks with the same basic elements. The first is more neat and clean-cut because it uses dark denim, perfectly rolled up, and crisp, new looking stockings and clean Converses. It’s playful and fun but still classy. The second look is more ‘grunge’ style by incorporating slightly battered-looking boots, tights with runs in them, and a t-shirt that’s a little loose fitting.
Another look that contrasts classy and grungy is the leather/swude jacket look. The contrast between something hard-core like the jacket and something girly and classy like the tights makes for an interesting rocker vibe.
Other types of jackets can be used as well for more casual types of looks. The first photos emphasizes the blue denim by choosing a dark corduroy jacket and black tights. The second tones down the shorts by pairing them with similarly-colored tights and offsetting it all with brightly colored shoes and a light denim jacket.
You don’t always have to choose black stockings. Simply selecting a quiet, but not-so-neutral color like navy blue can add livelyness to the outfit without going overboard. Or, you can lighten up the whole look by choosing pale colored tights and shorts.
Switch it up by choosing a pattern for your tights. Wearing one out-of-the-ordinary print like argyle stockings or floral shorts can make this simple style %100 more unique.
What do you think of this look?