I meet the most interesting people in Whole Foods. There was the women with the Dutch accent who was buying 40 loaves of sourdough bread for her freezer. There was the woman who tried to prevent me from buying aluminum foil because it would make my son's testicles shrink. And there was the very nice man with a tongue piercing so large that he could barely tell me which vegan ice cream bars were worth serving. But so far, my favorite run-in at Whole Foods was with Krista.
I ran into Krista while shopping, and loved her whole aesthetic. She managed to pull off a very cool look, a "I just threw this on and now look amazing" kind of a look, and I loved the color combination of her outfit.
She's wearing Urban Outfitters dark purple skinny cords that she just cut off right above the ankle (a trick that I'll be copying). The reason they fit so well is because she ripped apart the seams and re-sewed them for a tighter fit all the way up. Love it.
She paired the purple cords with simple flip flops and a slouchy gray v-neck tee then added a fun striped bag. She added a pop of color with a red track jacket.
I love this outfit because it's an easy way to take the t-shirt and jeans uniform in a new direction. Use a colored cord (or jean), pair it with a neutral tee, colorful jacket, and a fun slouchy bag. Don't be afraid of color – mixing up basic separates with great color is what makes this look so interesting. Notice that if you changed all of Krista's clothing to a neutral color (normal jeans, black jacket) the overall funkiness of the outfit and the easy cool gets lost.
Here's how I would recreate:
The pants are Delia's Morgan Low Rise Skinny Cord in purple, on sale for $36.50. The slouchy gray t-shirt is AE Deep V Favorite Tee, $15.50 at American Eagle Outfitters. I found the slouchy cotton hobo at Old Navy for $12.50 (they have a bunch of colors but the blue floral above is my favorite) and the track jacket at American Apparel for $44. The color is raspberry. Yum.
And don't you love her daughter's boots? So cool.
5/3/09 – My response to reader Rachel's comment: How to copy this look if you don't like skinny jeans?
Rachel poses a challenging question. How to retain the overall funkiness (and coolness) of Krista's outfit if you want to stay away from skinny jeans? Unfortunately, avoiding skinny jeans also means avoiding colored denim. Currently, colored denim (or cords) are mainly available in skinny or straight leg styles.
So. Let's look into the fundamentals of why this outfit works so well:
1.Proportion – pairing cropped pants and bare shoes (flip flops) with a longer, slightly baggier sweatshirt keeps the whole outfit from looking dowdy.
2. The Mixing of tailoring – clean crisp lines in the pant, with a sloppier top is partly why this look is so effortlessly cool
3. Unexpected color combination (which I've already discussed in the post).
So, if I were trying to recreate this without skinny jeans, I would look for a pant that has clean lines (to offset the sweatshirt) but that had some kind of unexpected detail – a funky color or pattern, etc. Here are a couple of options:
Above left are the Gap Colored Flare Leg Jeans in Seaside, $60. These jeans evoke a very 70's cool, which is right in line with the sweatshirt. Plus they have a nice crisp wide leg which should drape fairly well. Drape is important if you want to pull off baggier tops with a flare bottom. Add aviator sunglasses in addition to the items from this post and you have an outfit with a pretty bad-ass 70's vibe. And these jeans would be great for summer.
Or try Express' Editor Luxury Stretch Crop Pant in Black Plaid, $70 (above right). This look might be harder to visualize because the picture above has styled these pants in a dressy manner. However….I think with a slouchy tee and the raspberry track jacket from above, and paired with flip flops, not heels, you would end up with a fun, funky look. I don't know if you've tried the Editor pant yet, but I know a ton of girls (of all body types) who swear by this cut.
Lastly, you could also try this look with a boyfriend jean (rolled cuffs!). The downside is that this look would be a little more expected (a little less funky) and harder to pull off if you are very curvy. Check out our old post on Boyfriend jeans for info on how to style. Hope that helps!