Chic Picks: Flare Denim

by Tracy James

Having grown weary of the monopoly that skinny jeans have held on the denim world, I was relived when an alternate style - flare - rose to the surface. That said, as a petite person I eschewed the style, remembering my experience with bootcut jeans: once hemmed, my bootcut became a straight silhouette. I figured flares would end up as bootcut once altered, so resigned myself to admire the style on others but not in my own closet. Until, that is, I observed a not-so-tall client try on a high-waisted pair and "voila," her short legs were transformed to long. lean stalks, and more exciting, the flare shape remained even after I folded under the hems to mimic the necessary tailoring. Soon after, 3 pair of high-waisted flares (in low/moderate/high price points: Just Black olive/ Paige "Bell Canyon" blue/Free People black) entered my life, opening up a myriad of new outfit combinations, since I was now able to wear my shorter tops with denim, tops that were ill-proportioned for my skinny jeans.

Full disclosure, I wear my highest wedge booties with my flares, to lengthen my legs as much as possible. At only 5 '1 ", with both a booty and hips, I prize anything that slims and lengthens! The high waist was the key to making this style work for me. If you like the look of flare jeans, I recommend you start with the higher waisted offerings. I've personally tried on the following styles, deeming each stylish, flattering and comfy. (Color options, cords and yes even white!)

Chic Tip: Wondering where the hem of your flares should fall? This style is designed to make your legs took as long as possible, thus should be left as long as possible. Take a look online at celebs and fashionistas sporting the look, and you will see that they practically sweep the ground. If you're petite like me, this means wearing your tallest heels to the alterations shop when having them measured. If you're tall, seek out styles with the longest inseam, then select your shoes accordingly. Most likely you will find that a chunkier shoe - like a substantial wedge or platform bootie, is going to best balance the dramatic proportions of the flare.