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Point me in the direction of stylish non-frumpy 3/4 length trousers, please? And tell me what to wear with them!!!

(28 Posts)
JessiCake Mon 13-Mar-17 21:39:01

I love the jauntiness of a flash of ankle as the weather gets warmer (and as I DON'T DO dresses or skirts it's the only way I can look at all spring-like!)

But I need help!

I have bough Boden Richmond 3/4 length trousers in the past but they don't fit me brilliantly and I prefer a slightly skinnier leg (they say they're a straight leg but they always come up too loose for me). Also I always worry that Boden veer into frumpiness somehow, can't quite put my finger on it.

I'm a freelance mum of a pre-schooler so they don't need to be work type trousers but I do like to look vaguely pulled-together...

I'm 40 (hence the horror of frumpiness) and a tall size 12.

And even if I find these Holy Grail trousers, how do I wear them in a way that isn't (wait for it) frumpy or conversely too young for my age? And I don't really have a clue what to do about footwear - slip-on trainers? But if so, what on my top half? Plain T-shirt and cardi strikes me as boring but don't know what else to try... Ballet pumps for the Audrey Hepburn look (even though I'm no Audrey...)

My style is very minimalist but I like flashes of interest...

Can I look anywhere for inspiration?!

I feel that if I get this right, it will be the building block of my entire spring-summer wardrobe and thereby CHANGE MY LIFE. I hate S/S in general as I'm not fit or tanned enough to wear anything revealing and I get sweaty in anything over 20 degrees... this year I would like to look chic/glam and NON-FRUMPY, please...

mrszebrastripe Mon 13-Mar-17 21:42:09

I could have written this myself (apart from being a good few years older) I can't supply any answers - just wanted to offer some solidarity. I want to be stylish but not look like I'm raiding my teens wardrobe!

DrScholl Mon 13-Mar-17 21:42:25

gap bi stretch

SesameSparkle Mon 13-Mar-17 22:33:41

I recently tried compact cotton trousers from oasis and warehouse. They fit much slimmer through the hips and thighs than anything Boden and they seem quite cool to wear. They seem to look ok styled with a tucked in shirt. I haven't figured out shoes yet though.

AspasiaFitzgibbon Mon 13-Mar-17 23:30:06

Also watching with interest. Trousers that hit just above the ankle are without doubt the way forward.

Floisme Tue 14-Mar-17 08:48:36

I'll be moving into ankle length trousers too. I love skirts and dresses but only with opaques plus I'm tired of all the 'grooming' nonsense. However - sorry if this isn't helpful - I'm after a different shape to you. I want a widish (but not too wide) leg and a mannish cut so that I can jam my hands in my pockets and stride out, feeling like Katharine Hepburn.

I've just got these from the Uniqlo U range.
I really like them but sizing and colour are bonkers so I've now got four pairs to send back!

I've also just bought some wide leg, ankle length chinos in H&M, again in a slightly masculine shape. Sorry no link as can't find them online. They do slim leg ones too, all around £20.

I'll be wearing them with either cotton or silk shirts and brogues. I'm also after a couple of cotton or linen jumpers, slouchy fit and with a deepish V neck but not seen any yet.

slinkysaluki Tue 14-Mar-17 09:04:56

Never really bothered much with H and M, the odd piece I've had but looking on the website they have a few nice tapered type trousers on there.

Floisme Tue 14-Mar-17 09:09:37

I've always found their trousers pretty good. I got a pair last summer for under £30 that I hammered very hard for work and they've lasted just as well as some from Whistles. But you have to try on - I'd never order online.

slinkysaluki Tue 14-Mar-17 09:22:06

Was going to say Flo there are some nice fine knit slouchy jumpers and cards on there too. Yes you are right about trying on, it's one of my hates though changing rooms. We have a big H &M in town so I will bite the bullet and visit. I'm 6ft so the length can be a problem for me.

Floisme Tue 14-Mar-17 09:31:09

Thanks I'll take a look!

Cherrypie32 Tue 14-Mar-17 10:23:44

m2.hm.com/m/en_gb/productpage.0434635002.html#Black/White/Patterned
I bought these in H&M, they are 7/8 at least on me and I'm only 5'5. Really comfy and flattering with a flat front and side zip. I'm wearing with my Hush 'love' black jumper and black trainers.

Semaphorically Tue 14-Mar-17 10:59:13

Mango make great trousers for work, I have a pair that I love that are still going strong after a few years of frequent wear.

JessiCake Tue 14-Mar-17 19:43:48

Thanks everyone!

Have just bought two pairs of Gap bi-stretch online (much prefer trying on trousers in the privacy and comfort of my own home...) A dark blue pair and a black pair with a white dot which I am now regretting and wish I'd gone for plain black instead...

They look FAB in the pics obv, on stunning models with long legs and wearing high heels...

Assuming they look OK on, and fit well, how can I style them? Love the advice I've seen elsewhere on here from fellow 40-somethings who dread the frump factor - wear 'proper' tops rather than plain tees - as I always feel more put together in a nice top. I love shirts, so I think the bi-stretch trousers might work well with a nice tucked-in mannish linen or cotton shirt for spring (I don't even want to think about high summer weather yet...)

Does that sound a good 'uniform'?

It's footwear that baffles me. Can I do nice/smart trainers with this? I quite like slip-on styles and was thinking something pared-down in black or a nice crisp white or silver?

Would ballet pumps kill the whole look stone dead?

I only wish I could strut about in the sort of wedge heels on the models in the pics as I love nothing more than an ankle-grazer with a high heel, but for everyday it's not practical for me at all sad

Thanks HUGELY for all the advice and the sympathy!

SeaRabbit Tue 14-Mar-17 20:56:46

Kitten heels now they are back in (again) (for some of us they never went away):

manrepeller.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/4307bc5174dfd8a511d65b8ed5892c9d.jpg

JessiCake Tue 14-Mar-17 21:03:26

Ooooh could I get away with kitten heels or would I just look like I've been clinging onto 90s fashion since 90s fashion first happened...?

Would a low-ish sporty wedge-type thingy work? Not exactly sure what I mean but something akin to a low wedge trainer but more shoe-like...?

I quite like driving shoes too blush but they are probably horribly naff?

hecallsmebunny Tue 14-Mar-17 21:08:57

I think slip on trainers would look great with the style you describe.

I don't know what driving shoes are so can't comment?!

JessiCake Tue 14-Mar-17 21:13:29

bunny - I probably basically mean a loafer...? You know the loafers with the very very rubbery, soft soles?

Thanks, will have a nose around for some nice smart slip-on trainers - maybe silver ones.

2017SoFarSoGood Tue 14-Mar-17 21:43:23

I'm wearing the black with white stars Gap bi-stretch with fab pointy ballet slipppers (with a very cute black faux fur pom-pom) and got loads of compliments today. Also wore them with orange suede driving shoes and that was a great casual look.

Now I want these in every color/design. Such a great fitting trouser.

DrScholl Wed 15-Mar-17 06:27:25

"How can I style them? "
Just wear them with stuff. It's just trousers. Not a bloody fashion statement

slinkysaluki Wed 15-Mar-17 21:33:12

confused confused

Bananajam Thu 16-Mar-17 07:37:36

I'm probably a bit late to the party but i wear H&M black stretch skinnies for work every day. They do get baggier so it's best to get slightly smaller than ones that fit well but they last and last. I have both flat fronted and jeans style pairs and wear Ioafers or brogues with them - I'm 46

citychick Thu 16-Mar-17 08:53:39

i have the gap bi stretch in navy.
wear them with supergas or my adidas gazelles. also have nude colour brogues.
team it with t shirt and necklace. and a cardi or jacket.
its no statement outfit but i buy good quality t shirts now from places like j crew. and a good bag. maybe a scarf hanging down too .

i also find footwear a drag as i have sore feet and wear orthotics .

i am also 46.

Cherrypie32 Thu 16-Mar-17 09:27:07

Citychick, can I ask you what shoes work ok with your orthotics, do the gazelles and superga? Do you buy bigger size?

citychick Thu 16-Mar-17 10:14:43

cherrypie
Gazelles work well with orthotics. I have a size 5 shoe and bought from the junior collection. They have ortholite soles and are a lot softer than adult gazelles. Only in navy tho. Haven't tried the fashion colours...really want to. Size 5 is fine.

Supergas - mine say size 4, but I found supergas with a slight heel wedge so I don't need my orthotic. I have them in navy and white and love them.

The problem with putting orthotics in your shoes is that they need to be deep enough at the heel so you don't walk out of them.
Trainers seem to fit the bill.

I've attached pics. Please excuse my grotty trainers. But be grateful you can smell them! 😬

Manijo Thu 16-Mar-17 14:06:06

i usually get my 3/4's from Gap, Zara and Banana Republic (good sales)

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