Fall/Winter Fashion
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Fall Try-On Haul Part 2: Denim & Pants

Welcome back to Part 2 of this week’s Fall Try-On Haul! I had so many items to share with you, I decided to separate this post into two parts… and now it’s going to be three.

I just wasn’t able to get to the shoe reviews, but I will post those tomorrow. Be sure to check out Part 1, if you missed it.

SIZING NOTES: I’m 5’5″ and around 137 pounds, with an hourglass shape. Unless I say otherwise, I’m wearing a 6/28 in pants/jeans, a small in tops, a 6 in dresses/jumpsuits, and size 8 shoe.

Fall 2021 Denim & Pants

I practically live in denim, and I’m very picky about fit and feel, so I tend to purchase pricier brands for my personal wardrobe. That said, I always try to find some lower priced denim options to share with you because I realize not everyone prioritizes denim the way I do. I’ve organized these from lower to higher priced options.

Gap High Rise Vintage Slim Jeans, $69.95 $55 + 20% off with code YOURS

jeans (28) // top (S) // flats (7.5)

These jeans are a slim straight ankle jean, and they come in regular, petite, and tall sizes. They run true to size, and I’m wearing my usual 28. They have an 11″ rise, which I consider quite high. The inseam is 27″ on the regular, which is a shorter ankle-length on my 5’5″ frame.

The fabric is 89% Cotton, 5% Recycled Cotton, 5% Recycled Polyester, 1% Elastane. It has a bit of give, which makes them comfortable, but I feel like they might stretch out some. The mid-indigo wash is easy to pair with all sorts of colors and neutrals. These are a good go-to pair of jeans if you don’t like to spend a lot, but you want an updated silhouette.

I find this length quite versatile for pairing with different types of shoes. Here, I’m wearing them with ruched flats in a versatile shade of taupe.

They also look good with sneakers. These corduroy slip-on sneakers with shearling lining have unfortunately already sold out in the khaki color, but they’re still available in ivory.

I also like these jeans with clogs. There’s just enough ankle showing to be slimming, but not enough to look awkward.


LOFT High Rise Kick Crop Jeans, $79.50 + 15% off with code MORE

jeans (28) // sweater (S) // boots (8)

These jeans are cropped flares, which means they’re fitted through the hip and thigh, with a mini flare leg. They come in regular, petite, and curvy sizes, and they run true to size. They have a 26 1/2″ inseam, which I consider cropped, but they aren’t as short as some. They also have an 11 1/2″ rise, which is quite high, but very much on trend.

The fabric is 98% Cotton, 2% Elastane. They feel a little stiffer than the Gap pair, but still fairly comfortable. I like the dark wash for a change. It seems like everything is light wash these days, but the dark wash pops against fall colors in a way that is very pleasing to the eye.

I’m not sure I love the crop flare with these exact boots, but I do like the dark wash jeans with the cognac color boot… Or maybe it’s the longer, more voluminous top that’s throwing it off balance. I dunno, but something about this silhouette seems a little off.

I also tried these jeans with the Frame Le Lexington Chelsea Boot because I wanted to see them with a bootie that has a higher, more fitted shaft.

I like the silhouette okay, but the shaft is an awkward length so the jeans get hung up on it. I  also prefer the dark wash jeans with the cognac boots rather than the black.

Next, I tried these jeans with the Paul Green Jagger Chelsea Boots. The shaft is higher, so the jeans cover them nicely without getting hung on the tab on the back, but the boots look almost clownish with the rounded toe and big lug soles.

I’m thinking it may be time to return these boots. I just don’t see them working for me, as comfortable and gorgeous as they are.

I wish I’d tried these jeans with a different top, but of the three looks, I think I like the first one best. I think it would look even better with a shorter top that is more form-fitting. These jeans run true to size, and they’re part of the current spend more, save more promo. Save 40% off $125+, 25% off $100, or 15% of $75 with code MORE.


LOFT Chewed Hem High Rise Kick Crop Jeans, $79.50 + 15% off with code MORE

jeans (28) // sweater (S) // boots (8)

I’ve shared these before, but I wanted to put them in here because they’re a good light wash alternative to the kick crops above.

These jeans are soft and comfortable, and they have a flattering fit if you like the kick flare silhouette, which I do. I also really like the chewed hem.

There’s a little more sandblasting on the thighs and the seat than I prefer, but I think it’s magnified a bit in these pictures. Overall, it’s not a deal breaker.

These jeans run true to size, and they’re part of the current spend more, save more promo. Save 40% off $125+, 25% off $100, or 15% of $75 with code MORE.


LOFT High Rise Kick Crop Jeans, $79.50 + 15% off with code MORE

jeans // sweater // boots

So… I actually like these more than I thought I would! They’re a kick crop like the ones above, with a 11 1/4″ rise and 26 1/2″ inseam, and I kind of like this mustard color for a change.

The fabric is 98% cotton, 2% spandex, and I found them a little stiff but not terrible. I think they work with the black sweater and slim black Chelsea boots.

I also tried them with my Everlane Day Loafer Mules, and this works too. I’d like to try them with something less stark, like maybe a white tee and denim jacket with a lighter color shoe.

Yeah, these are pretty good. In my perfect world, they wouldn’t be quite so wide at the hem, and I think the frayed hem looks cheap. I might cut them off for more of a clean raw hem.

If you like colored denim, this is the way to do it in a way that’s on trend. I would stay away from bright colors, like we’ve worn in the past, but this mustard color looks very current, especially in the crop flare silhouette.


Good American Good Legs Cig, $139

at Evereve // at Bloomies // on sale at Good American // sweater // cami // mules

You may remember seeing these in my last Try-On Haul — the one a couple weeks ago, not Part 1 of this one. It’s still relevant, so be sure to check that one out too, if you missed it. I’m reposting the  jeans from that post so you can compare to those in this post.

These jeans are a cigarette style, so that means slim and straight, more of a skinny jean that is cut straight from calf to ankle. They have a 10 1/2″ rise, 27 1/2″ inseam, and 12 1/2″ leg opening. They’re Good American, so they really suck you in, and I love this off-black wash for fall. They run true to size, or size up if in between.

Here’s a few ways I’ve worn them already… with a t-shirt and sneakers to a Friday night high school football game.

They also look cute with this lilac-colored polo sweater and black mules (also at Macy’s) with a low, asymmetrical vamp.

An oatmeal-colored sweater and taupe suede block heel mules also work. This pair is similar for less.

And here they are with a cardigan and lug sole booties, as well as a dressier pointed toe bootie.

As you can see, these jeans are already part of my closet. In fact, I like them so much, I just ordered this blue jean version.


AG Mari High Waist Ankle Slim Straight Leg Jeans, $198

jeans // sweater // mules (also at Macy’s)

I’m already a fan of the AG Mari, but I ordered this super sleek dark wash pair because I read somewhere that we’re going to see this wash trending this fall. I love it for a more elevated, sophisticated vibe.

These jeans have a 29″ inseam with a 13″ leg opening and 11″ front rise, and the fabric is 98% cotton, 2% polyurethane, so they have just enough stretch to be comfortable but they hold their shape well and don’t bag out.

Here they are with those Franco Sarto mules. I don’t love the dark wash with the black shoes, but the way the asymmetrical vamp sits kind of low on the foot, I think works well with these jeans.

Next, I tried them with the Vince Camuto Golinda Lug Sole Flats.

The color combo is okay, but I don’t care for how the jeans rest on the shoes, and I worry about color transfer from the dark wash denim to the light colored suede loafers.

I also tried them with the Dolce Vita Serla Braided Mules, but I have the same issues with these.

So then I tried with the Aquatalia Dayana Stretch Booties in the Anthracite. I like how the jeans skim over the narrow shaft of these boots, but the dark wash denim on the dark grey suede doesn’t excite me. It would work okay with the right top, but I prefer more contrast.

Finally, I tried these jeans with the Marc Fisher Annabel Booties (see the Alva for something similar.)

Ding! Ding! Ding! I think we have a winner!

I love this color combination, as well as the way the slim straight leg jeans skim over the shaft of the booties and don’t buckle on top. This look is very 2012, and surprisingly, I don’t hate it.

After all that, I did send these jeans back. I can’t really say why, because as I look through these pictures, I rather like them. I didn’t get them on sale, so I’m going to wait and see if I wish I had them when cooler weather sets in and we start dressing for fall. Maybe I can pick them up on a sale at some point.


FRAME Le Sylvie High Waist Raw Hem Crop Jeans, $225

jeans // sweater // loafers

I can’t remember why exactly I ordered these, I guess I was kind of wanting a pair of light wash jeans in a straight crop style. I have the AGOLDE Toni in a light wash and the Mother Insiders with the ripped knees, but these seem a bit more elevated than both of those.

The jeans have a 28″ inseam with a 15″ leg opening and a 11″ front rise, and the fabric is 77% cotton, 18% modal, 4% elasterell-p, 1% elastane. They have a good bit of stretch, but still hold their shape.

The rise is pretty high for a front tuck; I’ve decided that 10″ or 10 1/2″ rise is my sweet spot, but I can do 11″ if I like everything else about them. Unfortunately, these fell a little short… ha! No pun intended.

First I tried them with the Vince Camuto Golinda Lug Sole Flats. I guess this works, the color combination definitely does. but I’m not loving the silhouette of the jeans for some reason. Or maybe it’s the all-over light wash and the straight cut hem. They just don’t look as expensive as they are.

Here they are with the Dolce Vita Serla Braided Mules. I mean, yeah, it works. But I’m still not excited to wear them.

I wanted to see how they work with boots, so I tried them with the Louise et Cie Varsan Platform Chelsea Boots. It works… but I’m still not excited. I feel like they would look better with the boots if they were an inch longer.

And here they are with a slightly more refined boot, the Vince Camuto Welland Booties. In this case, they need to be a half inch shorter.

I don’t love where the jeans sit right on top of the boots. Of course, I could cut them since they just have a plain cut hem, but I think I like the 28″ inseam length with the other boots and the loafers and mules.

These are nice jeans, but for the price point, I didn’t love them enough to keep them. Again, it’s kind of hard to know what I’m going to need this fall when it’s still 80 degrees here in Philly. If I decide later that I want them, I can repurchase or find something similar.


FRAME Le High Raw Hem Crop Straight Jeans, $238

jeans // sweater // shoes

Now, THESE, I love. I ripped the tags off these and wore them the day of this try-on sesh.

These are similar to the ones above, but I like the fit a lot better, even though the measurements only differ slightly. These have a 27″ inseam with a 14″ leg opening and 10 1/2″ front rise. That half inch in the rise makes a huge difference in how they fit and feel.

I also like that 27″ length — it walks the line between crop and ankle length on my 5’5″ frame. I also think they fit slightly closer to the thigh than the light wash Frame Le Sylvie pair above. Such small details, but it makes all the difference between feeling eh… and loving them. I also really love this wash.

The fabric is 93% cotton, 5% polyester, 2% elastane. It’s on the thinner side, which I find very comfortable, but they feel a bit rough against the skin. I mean, it’s not bad, but they’re just not super soft like my Mother jeans and or stretchy and snug like the Good Americans. That said, they fit really well and feel good on.

I tried them first with these black suede pointed toe block heel mules, and I definitely like this combo.

But a lot of days my life feels too casual for heels, so I also tried them with the Franco Sarto Bridget Mules.

The sleek styling of the mules works well with the off-black denim, and there’s just enough ankle showing to be flattering.

I was curious about a lighter shoe, so I tried them with the Vince Camuto Golinda Lug Sole Flats. I think this works too, both for the color combination as well as the pairing of pant and shoe styles.

I’m not as crazy about these jeans with these ivory Vince Camuto Rachey Loafer Mules. The styles are okay, but it’s a big contrast in the two colors. I guess it just depends on what I’m wearing on top.

I don’t know why I didn’t try these with boots, but I think they will work. I just have to be careful to wear a higher shaft that will slip under the pant legs.

It seems like the 10 1/2″ rise and 27″ inseam is the magic formula for me — at least with mules and loafers. Every woman is different, so that doesn’t mean that is what you should look for, but you can see that after trying on a lot of styles, you can hone in on the right combo for you.


MOTHER The Hustler Ankle Fray, $228

jeans (28) // sweater (S) // boots (8)

I’ve shown these before, but I wanted to include them again here to compare to the Frame crop straight above.

These jeans have an 11″ rise with a 27 1/2″ inseam and a 16″ leg opening. They’re what I consider an ankle bootcut style. They’re a little longer than the crop flares (or kick flares) like the LOFT pairs shown above, and the Mother Insiders that I wear so much.

Here they are with the ivory Vince Camuto Rachey Loafer Mules.

I really don’t care for this combo; I feel like the jeans are a tad too long. I prefer the Frame crop straights with the mules, but these Mother Hustlers look great with boots like these Marc Fisher Mayden booties because they’re just long enough to skim over the top.

This ankle length (as opposed to a full-length bootcut) is very much on trend, and I also love this faded grey wash.

The fabric is 92.5% cotton, 5% polyester, 2.5% elastane. It’s very stretchy and soft and comfortable. Also, these jeans are made in the USA.

Here they are with a more elevated bootie. I like the grey wash just as well with black boots as I do with taupe. It’s right in between, so it works with light or dark shoes.

I can’t say why I like these so much better than the light wash Frame Le Sylvie. The measurements are similar, but I think it has to do with the wash. I love this faded grey wash, and also these are more of a bootcut jean, and they fit closer through the thigh area. The Frame Le Sylvie is cut straighter from hip to hem, and that just doesn’t flatter me as much.

It would seem at first glance the Mother Hustler ankle flares and Frame Le High crop straight are too similar to keep both, but they will serve different purposes in my closet. I’ll definitely pair the longer pair more with boots and the shorter pair more with loafers and mules.

And yes, I realize these price points are really up there. I’m going to work on finding some lower priced alternatives, now that I’ve kind of figured out the rise and inseam combos I prefer.


Banana Republic Slim Utility Pant vs. Paige Mayslie

Banana utility pants (28) // Paige Mayslie (27) // thermal top (S) // sneakers (39)

I heard about these Banana Republic utility pants, and how they were almost a perfect dupe for the pricey Paige Mayslie utility joggers I wear so much, so I wanted to see for myself and compare.


Paige Mayslie Joggers, $208

at Shopbop (27) // at Nordstrom (27) // top (S) // shoes (39)

I do think it’s important to note that I have had the Paige pair for three seasons, and I wear them almost weekly. The cost per wear has definitely averaged out over time to be very reasonable. That said, I get that they’re not in everyone’s budget, and I also haven’t seen them on sale in a while. They used to go on sale occasionally, and I think I got mine on sale, now that I think about it.

So what I like about these is the color, for one. It’s a very pretty shade of olive, and it works well with so many colors and neutrals. These are also stretchy and very comfortable. The fabric is 46% lyocell/25% cotton/19% modal/10% elastane.

They have a 26 1/2″ inseam with a 12″ leg opening and 10″ front rise… so there you go with that sweet spot in both the inseam and the rise. They look great with sneakers and sandals.

These do run a bit big, so I sized down to a 27, but sometimes they can feel a tad snug. I also always hang them to dry, even though it says you can dry them.


Banana Republic Slim Utility Pant, $98.50 + 40% off + Extra 10% off with code BRFAMILY

pants (28) // top (S) // shoes (39)

Okay, here’s the Banana pair in the Dusty Olive. As you can see, the styling is very similar, with the front cargo pockets and the elastic hem with the zipper.

This color is a little more of a murky army green, which I like just fine, but they look more grey than olive to me. They also come in black, which is a nice option, as well as ivory and rose.

The biggest difference is in the length and the fabric composition. These have the same 10″ rise, but they have a 28″ inseam, and you can see in the pictures that they’re clearly longer than the Paige pair.

I don’t like this length on me at all. I much prefer the cropped look, but the Banana pair does come in short sizes with a 26″ inseam, if you want that. And if you want them longer, they come in tall with a 31″ inseam.

These also have rear patch pockets rather than the Paige flap pockets.

The other difference is the fabric composition. These are 98% cotton, 2% spandex, and they feel very stiff and don’t have much give. For that reason alone, I would have returned them. If they were more comfortable, I would exchange them for the short length for a more cropped look.

They also fit rather snug. Even in the 28, they feel tight. I don’t know how much they will give with wear, but you may want to size up if you tend to run in between sizes.

I also tried this Banana pair with clogs for a different look, and they’re okay, but I think the sneakers match the style of the pants better.

Suffice it to say, the Paige pair is my favorite, but the Banana pair is a decent dupe. Just be sure to size up if in between, and maybe try the short length if you want more of a cropped look.


White House Black Market Comfort Stretch Slim Ankle Pants

pants (6) // blouse (S) // shoes (7.5)

Okay, last pair! Whew!!! And I thought I was going to add shoes to this post? Ha!

I ordered these because the ones I have that I wear all the time are sold out, and I’ve had some requests for something similar. Let’s just say, these look a lot better on the model than they do on me.

I mean, they’re okay. They look very traditional and classic, but they don’t fit snug to the leg the way they appear on the model.

That said, they’re nice and thick and very nice quality, and they run true to size or maybe a tad small for this brand. I sometimes size down to a 4, and this size 6 just fits.

And I didn’t review this blouse, but it’s also a nice one if you need work wear.


And I guess that’s a wrap! I did want to review the shoes in this post, plus I have some others that I didn’t feature here, but that will have to wait till tomorrow. Have a fabulous Friday!

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24 thoughts on “Fall Try-On Haul Part 2: Denim & Pants

  1. Question on the Banana Republic pant. You posted that you tried a size 28 but sizing on website is 2,4,6 etc. Did you go with a 6? Thanks

  2. Wow, Jo-Lynne. You work so hard to give us so much information. I’ve learned a lot from you are inseams, rise etc. etc. I had lots of comments as I read through, but of course forgot by now. LOL I’m kind of finding my sweet spot too, but I’m shorter than you and I’m finding to find my sweet spot on the inseam I really need to order the petite but petite fit me weird, almost too short waisted and bag weird, so I really need the “short” length. Most jeans don’t come this way. I”ve been frustrated on the new jean styles with boots. I just don’t like them with boots yet. I say yet as my eye will adjust. I like them with sandals and mules, but Winter is coming. I have to say I like the cigarette style on you the best and like skinny jeans on you too. The DARK wash, longer style do look nice on you; your legs look soooo long, but they do look dated to me still. Love the black clogs you styled at the end. I’m sure those will be in your shoe review. Great job and thanks for all the hard work. PS I was one waiting for your post to drop. Up early not sleeping LOL

  3. Thanks for a great roundup. For those like me whose body type works best with a mid-rise jean, the Gap vintage slim also comes in a mid-rise. I liked it enough that I picked up a second pair on sale to cut a raw hem for more casual wear.

  4. Great post! One thing I learned from you is, the jeans can looks so different, depending on what shoe/boot you wear!! All my boots are still up in the attic, so I’m wearing sandals and sneakers! Actually, I am on my way to Nordstom’s this morning to pick up a pair of sale sandals, so I will go up that escalator and take a good look at denim. I know they are having a pretty good sale right now. I LOVED the AG Mari jeans, the ones you returned! HAHA!

    1. I do like them too, I guess I just wasn’t super excited about them just yet. I think I like them best with boots. Also, I have another pair of them in a slightly lighter wash. If I end up wearing them a lot, I will probably add another pair in a darker or lighter wash… and hopefully I can get them on sale. 🙂

  5. I love the looks of ankle and cropped jeans and I wore them all summer. Unfortunately, those won’t work for my snowy winters. Socks are necessary where I live.

    1. I intentionally styled fall looks because it’s September, but these jeans can all be worn with socks and boots in the winter. The key is to make sure the boot shaft is high and narrow enough to fit underneath.

  6. I’m with you on the rise, Jo-Lynne. I keep trying the higher rises and they are a no for me. Maybe because I’m short-waisted? I’m 5’7 (where did that other inch go???) and 10.5 is my sweet spot. I’m bookmarking this post to go back to when it’s not in the 80’s and I can start wearing boots. I like the new styles of legs in jeans and pants but they sure have made finding the right pair of shoes or boots tricky.

  7. Thank you for the detailed analysis. No other blogger breaks down the details in such a helpful way. Denim is so complicated! I also appreciate the J. Crew blouse at the end for a nice, washable great-for-work look.

  8. Hi Jo-Lynne,
    I’m much older than you but your blog is still my favorite! We have similar taste and style. Refined casual?

    I have a question about sizing on the Everlane polo from yesterday’s blog. I know you’re wearing the small, and I normally wear a small as well. Since this would be my first purchase from Everlane though, I’m a little wary to order the small. On the size chart, a small is 2-4 and medium is 6-8. Do you find that to be consistent with your normal sizes? My normal size would be more of a 4-6 (34.5-35.5 bust).

    Any thoughts would help me make my decision.

  9. I guess my eye has still not adjusted to the new jean styles, or I’m just old, but I think the AG Mari jeans look way better than any of the kick crop ones. I don’t think the kick crop jeans can possibly be flattering on my short, stubby legs.

  10. This was a very instructive post (which I love!). I can’t wait for the post about shoes tomorrow, my favorite after jeans! One thing I’m noticing about the change in denim shapes from skinny to more flared jeans is that it really requires a reassessment of anything about the jeans. I think the baggier, boxier tops and sweaters look okay with skinny jeans, although I’ve never been a fan. They just aren’t very flattering on my hourglass figure and I’m only 5’3″ and short torso so they could swallow me up. But when you wear flared jeans like the Loft ones above, I don’t think the tunic-type top looks very good. And when you said “clown shoes” I LOL’d! Because I hate to say it, but that’s accurate. It’s not a flattering look on you with all three combined. If the jeans are more streamlined like those Mother jeans, a looser top is not so bad. Do you think tops will become more form-fitting and “shorter” to go with the new jeans shapes? Oh, I hope so. I loved the 90s and early 2000s when bootcut pants and closer-fitting tops were the thing. 🙂

    1. Yes, the tops already are getting that way, and there’s a lot of bodysuits and tucking going on. I find those harder to wear with my high waist and large chest, but that’s the direction things are going.

  11. I agree the AG Mari dark wash look so good on you! But dark wash is inherently more dressy and you may not get a good cost per wear on those. Fingers crossed for a sale 🙂

  12. I really like the cord shoes and the off black jeans!! I agree with you on returning those boots. All the looks are great!!

  13. Looking again over this Jean post. I think you should keep the black pants at the end. I think they look great on you. Do you still wear your black spanx pants? I got some at the anniversary sale. Haven’t worn them yet. Have a great Friday night. Yah!!! It’s the weekend.

  14. You must have been exhausted after that try on haul! I just can’t get into the crop flares with booties or maybe it’s crop flares in general🤦‍♀️. I love the dark wash straight leg 2012 on you lol. It must be bc I’m older than you! Have a good trip!

  15. Loved this post. I really like the different styles of denim that are available right now, but struggling with the high waists. 10 1/2 is the highest I can go, I think. I just ordered and received a pair of Moussy Vintage jeans (thankfully had a ton of points from the Nsale that I hadn’t used), but I’m returning them. I could’ve sworn the rise was 9 1/2, but it was 11. They were just way too high. and I really liked everything else about them. Except for the price. And as much as I love the comfort of Paul Green boots, I didn’t order any this year from the Nsale, even though I’d assumed I would order at least one pair. The ones you bought look cute, but they really do seem awkward and hard to style. Thank you so much for the really informative post!

  16. Hello, I have been following your blog for years and have learned so much.Thank you! But, I’m very confused about the length of pants I’m 5’2″ 120lb so I pretty much always need my pants to be altered but I never know how long to make them. What factors contribute to that decision?
    Thank you!

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