Reader Question: Craving Cropped Pants


Anthropologie People & Places Crops
Reader Question:

Okay, so it's now gotten hot where I live and I'm craving a shorter options for pants for work/play with kiddos. But a quick perusal of the stores this week left me swimming in a confusing sea of bermuda shorts, pedal pushers, capris, crops, and on and on. How can I tell what length pant is right for me? Or are they all equally right? I'm 5'9, thoroughly apple shaped, and constitutionally opposed to buying destroyed denim.

Thanks for your help!


Confused about pants.


No pant has greater potential to turn totally croptacular (particularly for those of us with bums and thighs or who are vertically challenged) than the cropped pant.  But done right, cropped pants are incredibly flattering and uber functional for moms.  


At 5'9", dear Confused About Pants, you can pull off virtually any length as long as you follow the cardinal rule of cropped pant wearing: do not for any reason wear a cropped pant that hits you at the widest part of your calf–this is never flattering.  For anyone.  Ever.  Shorter mamas need to approach cropped pants with caution.  They do have the tendency to truncate already short gams by breaking the line of the leg, so they need to hit just right–this is something you'll have to play with a bit, so I suggest boyfriend cuts to start–since you roll them yourself, you can take the time to find just the right length without paying a tailor.

Capris, bermudas and pedal pushers probably look fantastic on someone you know, but my favs, because anyone, no matter their body type, can pull them off, are cropped utility pants, cropped or rolled boyfriend denim and cropped chinos.  

Here are my picks in each category:

Cropped Utility Pants

I am running with the cropped utility pant craze.  There couldn't possibly be a more mom-friendly look.  The fabrics are sturdy and look great with a little wear.  And all those pockets!  Tissues, sunscreen, snacks. . . Extra points for skinny versions.  I love these paired with sandals and loose/slouchy tops, particularly in floral or other feminine prints, to offset the man-ish edge of the pant.

Left to right: 

J Brand Houlihan Lowrise Skinny Cargo ($231)

Rich & Skinny Cool Cropped Cargo ($189, on sale at Nordstrom in select sizes)

People & Places Crops ($128)

Sanctuary "Freestyle" Crop Cotton Poplin Pants  ($78)

Paige Premium Denim Layne Skinny Cropped Cargos ($169)

Cropped Denim

OK, since you're opposed to destroyed denim, I've found two phenomenal non-destroyed options for you and one very, very inexpensive distressed option–just in case you want to dip a toe into the destroyed denim look without forking over an arm and a leg. . . 

Cropped Denim
Joes Jeans Kicker Paltrow Cropped Jeans

Citizens Of Humanity Dylan Boyfriend ($189)

Gap East Straight Patch Jeans ($24.99 on sale in limited sizes)

Cropped Chinos

Depending on your office enviro, cropped chinos are perfect for work.  I'm particularly loving Deisel's Pakki cropped chino pant.  Paired with some cute pumps, or (office permitting) wedge sandals, the chino can be styled left right and center.  Consider a bright structured jacket over a tank accessorized with a scarf.  Click here for some of S.'s tips on styling chinos.


J.Crew Cafe Capri ($69.50)

Gap Slim Cropped Navy Pants ($49.50)

J.Crew Broken in Boyfriend Chino ($69.50)

Diesel Pakki Cropped Pants ($91)

– M

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