Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Cheryl Shops Fall Shopping Guide: Pegged Pants

Unlike trends, silhouettes move at a much slower pace. This is a good thing, because a major shift in silhouette involves a dramatic reinvention of one's wardrobe. A silhouette is the overall shape and proportion of one's look; it influences everything you wear and how you put it all together. Silhouettes tend to change every 7 or 8 years, although most people tend to associate them with decades: think the fitted tops and bootcut pants of the '90s, the heavily padded shoulders of the '80s, the long, lean look of the '70s, the boxy mod look of the '60s, the hourglass New Look of the '50s, and so on. In 2010, we're coming to the end of the era of the skinny jean. Yes, there are women who've been steadfastly wearing their boot-cut jeans all along, but think about it--when it comes to pants, it's been mostly skinny jeans and leggings, right? (A side note: Dresses have become incredibly popular during this time period as well, something that may or may not have to do with the dominance of skinny pants and the fact that many women don't feel comfortable wearing them.) I sense that a change is coming, a shift in what we wear and how we wear it. Yes, dresses are great, but I'd really like to see women embrace pants once again. I think the next big thing is flared pants, a retro high-waisted fit that's completely in line with the '70s revival that dominated spring runways from New York to Paris. Going from skinny to flare is a big change, however, and I have a feeling flares aren't going to catch on for several months. For now, however, I think pegged pants are a great option for right now. The shape gives one last nod to the '80s, a decade (I hope) we're leaving behind, and makes the perfect transition from skinny to flare. After all, there's nothing like living in the now.

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Almost all of the pants I'm featuring in this trend are cropped, which seems a bit silly for fall and winter, but they're actually the perfect length for wearing with booties--the cropped inseam lets you show off your latest footwear finds. These Thom Browne pleated pants even feature striped grosgrain trim at the cuffs, the better to draw attention downward. These obviously have a strong menswear inspiration but, like most of Browne's clothes, subvert tradition.


A more feminine interpretation, these Fendi pants have a more streamlined fit and a dramatic asymmetrical ruffle detail at the hip.


Alexander Wang's "Clueless meets Wall Street" fall collection got mixed reviews (and, yes, all together, it was at times a bit much), but there were some completely sexy pieces in it, like these pegged pants. I absolutely love the side cutouts--you can tuck in a shirt by day and let your skin show at night--and the leather cuff at the hem is totally tough. Yes, in my eyes, Alexander Wang can do no wrong.


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There's something about these Edun cropped pants that makes me think of fall--pair them with a cozy cardigan and a great scarf, then grab a cup of hot apple cider and plop down in front of the fireplace. Perfection.


The key to wearing pegged pants is to make sure they fit well through the thighs and legs, and these Myne Tamara pants manage to balance the pleated hips with nicely tapered legs. The asymmetrical detail is cool too.


These Pure DKNY pleated pants are probably one of the easiest pairs to wear--the pleats are subtle, and the streamlined shape is good for curvier figures. They're also stretch wool flannel, which makes them warm and cozy for winter months.


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These Charlotte Russe pleated pants are the cheapest of the bunch, but, well, it shows. If you end up with this pair, I'd suggest taking them to your tailor--even with a few slight alterations, they'll be cheaper than every other pair here, and some tapering in the legs can make them look much more expensive than their price tag.


For just a few dollars more, these Gap cropped slouchy trousers appear to have a much better fit (although the reviews warn about the narrow calves). These definitely have a strong menswear inspiration, but with a softer, more feminine fit.


These Cheap Monday peg pants are one of my favorite pairs, just because they're perfectly balanced--the hips and thighs are slouchy, but the leg opening is proportioned well. Because they're higher-waisted, that draws the eye to another small part of your body, i.e. your waist. And they're great practice for spring's upcoming high-waist flares--start tucking in your shirts now.

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