I hear the phrase “I can never find jeans to fit me” so many times during my consultations and whilst out shopping or wardrobe weeding with clients, so here’s a few tips and recommendations to ease the pain for those of you who share this sentiment.It really is all about bodyshape and proportions and not size! First and foremost you really need to understand what shape you are (neat/full hourglass, triangle, inverted triangle, lean column, rectangle or round) and whether you have a short, long or average rise (the area from your waist to crotch). You then need to consider your height (tall, average or petite). Putting all of this together, you’ll start to get some ideas of the types of jeans that will suit you best.
Those who are broader across their hips/thighs than their upper body (triangles), should look for styles with a wider leg which balance your proportions and skim the hips. The Wide Leg jeans at Next are a good and relatively inexpensive option (c.£40) – they come in a really flattering dark colour too.
If you have a curvy hourglass figure, then the bootcut will be a winner for you, as the flared shape balances out larger hips. The elasticity in the fabric will also be important, the more lycra/stretch in the denim the better. The Salsa Secret Boot Cut jean is great for those who want jeans to sit on their natural waistline (no more ‘muffin tops’!) and it comes with extra lycra in too. Whilst a bit more pricey (c.£100), they really do what they claim to and ‘shape and lift’ to perfection! House of Fraser and Selfridges stock them, and you can also order them from Next Directory (www.next.co.uk). Good news for those with a longer leg, they come in a 32” and 34” lengths too. For a cheaper option and for those who aren’t very curvy, try the Boot Cut, Sexy Boot or Curvy styles of jean from Gap. The Boot Cut is styled with a mid rise and slim hip/thigh, the Sexy Boot is the same but with a lower rise, or the Curvy style is cut with a mid rise and but with a more roomy fit across the hip/thigh. These jeans aren’t as stretchy as the Salsa fit jeans though so if comfort is your number one goal or if you’re really curvy, they may not be for you!
Salsa Secret Boot Cut Levi’s Curve IDFor those avid followers of fashion, why not try the 70’s flares … yes they’re back in the shops! – you really need height to carry them off though so not one for those of you with a petite frame! If you’re not quite this daring, then a smaller flared jean may be an option. It’s particularly good for those with neat hourglass figures, as like a bootcut the narrow upper leg streamlines thighs and the wider bottom balances the hips. Team them with an eye catching belt to draw attention upwards to your slim waist too! There are 70’s flares in most of the high street shops, but Gap do one in several different colours so if you fancy the coloured jean look (also a big trend this summer), then this may be for you.If you find that you suffer from the ‘baggy waist’ problem you’re not alone! Denim is a crisp fabric not best suited to following curves and the manufacturers often cut jeans to suit straighter body shapes. (Jeans were after all invented for men!). Levis claim to have the solution, however, with their recently launched ‘Curve ID’ range (c.£85). Quite simply, they have designed jeans to fit nicely ‘around’ bottoms, so you choose how curvy your bottom is and then opt for the ‘slight curve’, ‘demi curve’ or ‘bold curve’ jeans! “Perfect” was the verdict of a recent client I took shopping, so give them a try and let me know how you get on! Or, for those that like the fit of Gap jeans, try the ‘Curvy’ jeans (mid rise so they will sit a little higher, roomier in the hip/thigh & bootcut).
For those of you who like your jeans to sit on your natural waist, are longer in your rise or who wish to avoid the ‘muffin top’ look often created when low rise jeans ‘cut’ the tummy area, I can also recommend the Roma range at M&S, or the High Rise Bootcut/Skinny jeans from Next. If you’re happy to invest a bit more, as well as the Salsa range I mentioned before, try 7 for Mankind – they now do a ‘high rise’ version of their ‘original fit’ jean, or the American brand NYDJ (Not Your Daughters Jeans).For those of you that are a lean column in shape, with lovely long legs, then show them off in a skinny jean – they’ll be around for a while longer yet! Do be careful with this shape though if you have a curvier figure/fullness at the hip/thigh as a skin tight jean narrowing to the ankle can appear to enlarge the area above (ie. hips/thighs/tummy!).Jeans can be notoriously difficult to buy, so if you would like to find that ‘perfect pair’ just give me a call – one shopping trip and you could be sorted!Here’s what one happy client tweeted on returning from a jeans shop: “Fab day out with @Kerrie_Ellis. She spoke ‘jeans language’ to the assistants and went thro’ the displays with military precision – success!”. This client actually bought 2 pairs of jeans having not bought any for years!