Cheryl Shops Spring Shopping Guide: High Waist Flare Jeans

It's hard to believe, but we've been wearing skinny jeans for the better part of the last decade; all in all, skinny has been the dominant pants silhouette of the 2000s. Now that it's 2011, however, it's time for a change. I should mention, I am fairly reluctant to give up my skinnies--I think they suit my body shape quite well, and there's something to be said for fear of the unknown. Plus, changing one's pants does require a shift in the rest of one's wardrobe as well: all those long, billowy tops are not going to do you any favors with wider pants. But an important part of fashion is trying new things, and while flared jeans aren't exactly new, they're a drastic change, and often change is good. Higher-waisted, flared jeans were all over the spring runways, thanks in part to the season's strong '70s influence, and to mix metaphors, there's no time like the present to go back in time.

If you're going to splurge on a pair of jeans, this pair by Balmain is a good place to start (although they are on sale!). These have a lower waist, which is good for short-torsoed people like myself, or also if you want a more modern (i.e. not so '70s) take on the flared jean.

I've had my eye on these Derek Lam jeans ever since I saw a photograph of Joanna Hillman (a Harper's Bazaar editor and one of my sartorial girl crushes) wearing them. They have a touch of wool, making them a little more luxurious and trouser-like than the average jean. And the more generously cut thigh makes them more balanced and refined.

These denim sailor trousers from Alexander McQueen are definitely more fashion-y than the average jeans--the superhigh waist and cropped length both push the boundaries. Still, I think the length is perfect for summer, especially for wearing with sandals. They're definitely a statement, but they're McQueen, so you know the fit will be amazing.

For a more textbook definition of high waist flare jeans, I think Current/Elliott's Bell Jeans pretty much fit the bill. I am a big fan of Current/Elliott--they tend to nail fits perfectly, and they almost always use supersoft denim. The rise is dramatic but not crazy, and the legs are slim through the knee, breaking out in a big flare below. They get good ratings, too, which is an extra boost of confidence.

These Genetic Denim trousers are more of a trouser jean than a flare, and while they say high-waisted, 9 inches to me is more of a mid-rise. Regardless, they remind me of a pair of J Brand jeans I used to have but took to Beacon's Closet, sadly. They're a bit more relaxed and thus forgiving than, say, the pair above, making them great for the weekend.
MiH has quickly become one of those in-the-know denim labels, and with the promising look of their Marrakesh Kick Flare Jeans, you can see why. The welt pockets in front are an interesting detail, and the fit looks perfect--not too tight, not too baggy--through the thigh and is balanced by the deftly proportioned flare.

The Gap may be going through some design-personnel turmoil at the moment, but at least they still do jeans right. I've had my eye on their high rise flare jeans for awhile, and this pair in particular looks perfect for summer, thanks to its light wash.

I like the super-high waist and front patch pockets of Urban Outfitters' Vintage Naval Flare Jeans, but based on the reviews, it appears these run super small (and considering they're made from renewed denim, fit consistency is probably a challenge). Still, if you're skinny, these look like a pretty good option for the price.

Another pair I really like are the Sailor Relaxed Flare from Free People. Again, they're more of a lower-rise, relaxed-fit pair, but the button details are cute, they're reportedly supersoft, and the weight looks perfect for warm weather. All you need is a great pair of platform heels (but more on those next week).


Wholesale clothes said...

Wow amazing outfit.

Alison said...

Can I just say...thank god! I am SO tired of skinny jeans. I think they have a time and a place, but the marketing machines have been pushing them HARD, and I see so many girls wearing jeans that look awful on them. It is not about being skinny -- they just don't work on some body types! I think it is time skinnies just become one of many silhouettes, rather than the ONLY silhouette that people care about.

Trouser/high waist/wide leg jeans look best on me, but I think they look good on just about anyone. They are just instantly chic and glamorous! And at least for now, they make you really stand out among the crowd -- in a good way :)

Thanks for a great round-up of the options!

Gianna Blake said...

I’m also used to my skin fit mesh leggings. However your products definitely look like a change worth trying. I can’t agree more that we need to keep trying new things. I think time has come for the flared jeans to make a comeback. Afterall the fashion trends are cyclical.