August 27, 2013

The Two Safe Ways I’m Wearing a Crop Top (And Two Moms Who Went All-In)


While I was home in June, my sister and I had a discussion about crop tops.  She was pro, I was…meh.  Until I remembered that I had one.  (It was on clearance for $4.99 at Ann Taylor.  Reason enough, right?)

And actually, I do like this top.  You've seen it before here with a high-waisted maxi skirt….and a high-waist something, I think, is the key.  

(The high waist helps tame a squishy belly.  Really.  It's like Spanx.)  


BTW –  my booty-shorts?  They were my mother's. (OMG!!!) I guess there was no messing around in the 70's.  If you wanted shorts, you got SHORTS.

But let's talk about the high waist for a sec.  I find that if the waist hits above my belly button, yet below my ribs, the skin/pooch/whatever that lives there isn't as…frightening.


This is my scaredy-cat version of the crop top:  arms up, no skin.  (I'M TOTALLY OK WITH THAT.)  

If I were younger, or had fewer kids, or just was less poochy for WHATEVER reason (aka in better shape)….I'd love to try something like this:

(photo credit:  Knocked Up Fabulous, My Fair Leidy)

Both of these women are moms, BTW.  Totally stunning.  

I really like the idea of using a button-down (you can control exactly how much skin you show).  But a bustier?  In leather?  It looks almost demure with a high-waisted, below-the-knee skirt.  

So….crop tops, wow.  I mean, you're in, right?  I won't be the only one at the party in a bra top?  Cause I'm pretty sure it would go perfectly with my new boobs and houndstooth flares…  

Who am I kidding?  I'm all talk.  My time of bra tops is looong gone.  In fact, the last time I went Out To The Bars I wore this:


 (wearing: old Ann Taylor sweatersimilar at ASOS….sold out Jach's Girlfriend plaid shirt – also like this one and this onejeansbag…old Betsy Johnson heelssimilar)

Partially because it was a rainy day in June….but also because, well, it was a rainy day in June…in Michigan.  But HEY LOOK!  Crop top! 



BTW – Layering a crop top over a longer top is a killer way of hiding a small pooch.  (Hint:  Neither layer should be tight.) 

Lastly, I like messing with my jean hems, too.  The proportion games you can play with cropped tops, Mamas.  I tell ya, the proportion games.  It boggles my mind.




ps.  If any of you successfully pull off a bra top with high-waist flares, SEND PICS.  You will be my hero.

pps.  Refinery 29 posted How to Rock a Crop Top Without Gisele's Abs last week.  Love it.


  • Erica
    August 27, 2013

    Wait, I must have outfit details for that last outfit. SO PERFECT.

  • Janice
    August 27, 2013

    I was meh too, but found a 70’sish crop top at the thrift store recently and thought it would look great with black wide leg pants…we shall see. I love the booty shorts!

  • Maggie
    August 27, 2013

    Yes. Yes! YES!!

  • Erin
    August 27, 2013

    I’m divided on cropped tops. I’m opposed because it still feels dated to me, yet also in favor since I still have a few kicking around. I’ve been trying the high waist trick and decided it’s not for me – I just feel out of date and awkward and generally unflattered – but I love layering. I’ve been doing layering with tunics, but I love the idea of shirt-tails. That’s a 90’s trend I can get behind again!

  • Amanda
    August 27, 2013

    You look HOT in Mom’s booty shorts Shana! You’re so tiny but they make you va-va-va-VOOM, like a pinup girl! Kicking myself for getting rid of an old pair I had – I shortsightedly thought, THESE will never be in style again.
    The plaid look with a shortie sweater – OMG. This was my going-out college LOOK, with a pair of huge heels! I look at old pics & it feels like I was playing dress-up – was living in Chicago at the time & a big portion of my stuff was vintage, er, Goodwill. Ah, the ’90s!

  • KayBug
    August 27, 2013

    Diggin the high waisted thing. And that black bra top? F-I-double-EEEE-RCE. But exposed belly skin? Nevah.

  • Julie
    August 27, 2013

    Yes, please. Details!

  • susannah
    August 27, 2013

    And even though you don’t usually do “matchy” – i see your lipstick colour is close to the shoe colour and it really really works… maybe it adds a bit of polish to balance out the plaid?
    For whatever reason… i am rushing to my wardrobe to recreate this look!

  • merciblahblah
    August 28, 2013

    Crop tops, like overalls, keep sounding more and more appealing to me. I found a leatha version at Zara (see my fall wish list post here to see it:
    I dunno – I keep thinking I’m going to cave and get one to wear eventually. EEEEEK!!! You look SO cute in yours.

  • Kathleen
    August 28, 2013

    I looove the cropped top with the plain shirt underneath. I am also torn on crop tops on their own. I am really long waisted, so many shirts look like wimpy crops on me. Real crops at least look like I’ve doing something on purpose. But exposed belly skin is definitely not something I want to do, unless I want to horrify my oldest. 🙂 Tempting…
    FYI, the Mother skinny flares you highlighted a couple posts ago just went on sale at Shopbop.
    And Shana, you look simply amazing. You are one of those shining people in the world who spreads happiness and hope to others even when you face some serious challenges. I think you/we need to start collecting cool hat options for when you experiment with shorter hair styles. Hats are really in this year, right?

  • LJ
    August 28, 2013

    LOVE the bag in the “bar” photos. What is it?

  • Heather Novak
    August 28, 2013

    Here is my interpretation of a crop top, ala Miley Cyrus! I would LOVE to see your version, hee hee hee.

  • Katie
    August 29, 2013

    Your belly button is below your ribs? I’m so jealous! I’m way too short waisted.

  • FranticButFab
    August 29, 2013

    Catherine of Not Dressed as Lamb rocks a crop top, too:
    I like the short thing over long thing idea. I’ve got a slightly cropped sweatshirt from H&M that would be adorb over a white button-down. (Files mental note).

  • Shana
    August 29, 2013

    Wow. Totally out of my league. 🙂

  • Shana
    August 29, 2013

    Moopshop! It’s their paperback bag.

  • Shana
    August 29, 2013

    Kathleen, thank you for this comment. Such a nice boost. And YES. Hats are HUGE. Gosh, I’ll be so trendy. 🙂

  • Shana
    August 29, 2013

    Love it.

  • Shana
    August 29, 2013

    Yup. I’m totally softening to the “matchy-matchy’ bit. That lipstick – shoe thing was completely intentional. 🙂

  • Shana
    August 29, 2013

    I KNOW!! I don’t usually have curves, but they make me look….almost curvy? Yeah, I do love them.
    And the 90’s. I can’t get enough. It’s like finding myself all over again, LOL!

  • Shana
    August 29, 2013

    Updated the post with outfit deets! Sorry ’bout that!

  • Leidy LaLumia
    August 30, 2013

    wow! thank you for the compliment and featuring my look on your blog, feeling honor.
    as for the crop top look, you can pull off my look just fine as well, I am pretty sure 😉

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