Fashion Friday: Putting the Capris Discussion to Rest

As I said in my fashion post last week, I think there’s a time and place for capris and (or peddle pushers, cropped pants, clam diggers, WHATEVER you want to call them) on most people, but there are other better options.  Many of you agreed, but many of you were kicking and screaming at the mere suggestion that capris might be “out”.

For those who aren’t giving up their capris anytime soon, Mary asks:

I like capris, but only in moderation. But I never know what kind of shoes to wear with them. Maybe you could answer that question sometime?

Mary, I think almost any shoe can go with capris, depending on the style and level of formality.  First of all, in my very humble opinion, athletic sneakers should only be worn with athletic capris.  Sorry to be the bearer of bad tidings, but athletic sneakers with denim or khaki capris are the kiss of fashion death.  I realize that some of us are more concerned with pragmatism than fashion, and that is just fine if that’s how you roll.  However, as a rule, it’s not a great look.  Consider a cute Converse sneaker or perhaps something like this instead.


Personally, I wear flip flops all summer long. I LURV the flip flop. So that’s what I usually wear with my denim capris/cropped pants as well as skirts. I have some cute leather ones from Born that are oh-so-comfy.


Personally, I stay away from the loafer with capris.  I think that borders on grandma, but maybe that’s b/c my mom wears them all the time.  Sorry, Mom!  My mom always looks smart and stylish, but she’s got a good 25 years on me.  I’m not quite ready for Talbots yet.

If you are going to wear dressy capris to go out at night, I think they look much better with a high-heeled wedge sandal. That’s about the only thing that’s going to save them from looking like a fusty lady who lunches.  Not that I have anything against lunch.  Ahem.

For those of us who would like to get out of the capri rut, let’s discuss capri alternatives.  A recurring theme throughout the comments was that people don’t know what to wear instead.

And along those lines, Letty asked:

I would like to ask you opinion about SHORT shorts when it is very warm weather. If you are a size 12 of 14 (like I am!) and you are 47 years old, is a skirt more flattering then a short? Lately I don’t feel comfortable in a short anymore, even when I am on vacation. But I don’t want to wear long jeans all day when it is hot. Please advice! Thank you!

First, Letty, I am a firm believer that there comes a time in every woman’s life when no one should see her thighs unless she is at the local swimming hole.  I have reached that time.  But capris are NOT the only option.  You suggest a skirt, and I think you’re onto something there.

Many of you, in your comments on my post last week, instantly disregarded the skirt.  But I want to suggest that the casual skirt can be a GREAT comfy, casual option to capris and shorts.  Last summer, after a friend convinced me to give skirts a try, I went to Target and picked up one from their Converse® One Star® collection — a sporty navy blue skirt in a thin, flexible fabric that had a flattering silhouette and hit right above the knee.  I liked it so much that I went back and got another in more of a cargo style.

Like every other piece of clothing, the style you choose depends largely on your figure shape.  For me, I have learned that I look best in straight skirts that come to right at or above the knee.


Photo by Target.com

Perhaps you prefer an A-line or more of a flowy skirt.  Or a peasant style.  They are all cute — just figure out what looks good on YOU.

Throw on a casual skirt with a tank top or t-shirt, and you’ve got a cute, casual, and FLATTERING outfit to run around town in!


Photo from Athleta.com

I was surprised how comfortable I was in the skirt.  It is not nearly as impractical as I had assumed it would be.  So Letty, I definitely encourage you to embrace the skirt!

I’m still not ready to put my capris in the bonfire, but I am definitely looking to incorporate some “walking shorts” and skirts into my casual wardrobe this year.

Join The Conversation

26 Responses

  1. I am loving the skirt more and more. The right skirt can be the most comfortable and cool option on hot days. I like a skirt that hits me right at the knee and is A-line, preferably with a bit of stretch in the fabric.

    I’m finding that shorts are not working for me anymore. I like to cover up my thighs, but since I’m short, longer shorts look terrible on me. Skirts are definitely the way to go.

  2. I lived in skirts last summer. Now that I’m a little smaller, and have found a short style that is flattering, I’ll probably wear shorts a little more often, but I’ll still rock the skirt too. Skirts are definitely more versatile than people think. And there’s nothing wrong with feeling feminine and cute while going to the grocery store or whatever.

  3. I love my skirts. I have a couple that I wear all the time to work and for functions, so comfortable!

    I have also found that wearing skirt can actually keep me a bit cooler in the heat of summer and fall. It is nice to know there are options out there!!

    I actually have a question this week. We have a company function in May, our annual sales banquet. I don’t know if I am going for sure or not yet (somewhat fruitless since the support staff doesn’t make incentives) but if we decide to go I am at a loss as to what to wear. The “dress code” is Business Attire – black tie/cocktail dress optional. Does that mean I wear my khaki pants? Don’t think so, since EVERYONE talks about outfits for weeks afterwards. Help!

  4. I have been doing the skirt thing for a while now and love them. They keep me cooler than anything else in our 100 degree summer weather and even a casual skirt makes into a more put together and stylish outfit than my capri pants. The only issue I’ve encountered is when I need to climb up on a playground at the park with one of my kids. I guess I could were bloomers under my skirts, like my 3 year old daughter does!!!

  5. Love this post. I really want to update my style this summer… so that I actually have one! I’m tired of just denim capris and t-shirts or tanks and the skirt idea is fabu!! Thanks for the inspiration!


  6. I am loving that athleta skirt. I am buying it and don’t care that I am short. I will wear them with wedges 🙂

    you are too funny with the capris discussion…

    You totally have to address the skinny jeans fad at some point.

  7. I completely agree with everything you’ve said! I would much rather be in a skirt or cute & casual summer dress than a pair of shorts. People should not forget about he skirt! Thanks for also reminding everyone that it’s not okay to wear tennis shoes with khaki or denim capris. I love a pair of flip flops or a wedge sandal, depending on the occasion.

  8. Let me just give you a comment high five on the skirt. I totally agree and need to get more of them. I think some capris just weigh you down; and I do not need to be weighed down on my bottom half.
    And thanks for bringing up Talbots (is that how you spell it? My brain is off today-). My MIL keeps mentioning going there like it’s a big fat treasure hunt and treat and I keep avoiding it like the plague that it is. If she has taken me “shopping” there in the past I just get jewelry. I don’t know how to squelch her want to buy me things. Not that I don’t love that, but it’s things on her terms. Much like her babysitting- glad to have it, but always on her terms. What’s a girl to do?
    I think I’ll go get a spring skirt to cheer me up.

  9. OMH I LOVE SKIRTS!!! I can’t believe some people don’t wear them?!?! I pretty much live in skirts from April to September (and when I’m not wearing skirts I’m probably wearing a dress!) Skirts are easy, feminine, comfy and stylish – they easily dress up and down. Unless I’m doing something active I’m in a skirt (that said I went on the most incredibly hike in Egypt in a skirt!)

  10. I am young, and I LOVE capris. I am enjoying following these posts. For me as a special ed teacher who teaches in the summer as well as the typical school year, capris are a no-nonsense must. I wear them with nice flip flops to school, and heels when going out.

    I will have 9 months off beginning in April after I have my first baby and I am going to have to start looking for some cute skirts (and maybe walking shorts, I’m not sold on these yet, I can’t stand shorts!).

  11. Ok this is funny.

    I went and bought some fantastic capris yesterday. I might even do a tribute post to you if someone takes pictures of me.

    But I was telling a co-worker about my fabulous new capris. She has me what kind of shoes do I wear with them. I told her Converse without socks and/or Flip Flops/Sandals.

    I’m glad that there is someone else out there who has fashion sense similar to mine.

    Oh, and I don’t do skirts during the summer. I don’t like when my legs get all sweaty.

  12. I LIVE in Capris as early and as long as I can, Flip flops and slip ons mostly…skirts and toddlers have not prooven to be practicle for me…but she is getting older…maybe next year.

  13. I have many different pairs of capris and I LOVE them. Mostly from Eddie Bauer because they are casual and very lightweight. I have about 5 different pairs of the first shoe pictured and I love them too – gotta love Clark Privo! You can wear them all year round and they are SO cute!

  14. Capri’s are dead to me. I am tall and large boned and one day I saw my proportions in a 3 way mirror in capri’s and that was it! I have several skirts, and two pair of walking shorts, and that is my summer wardrobe. With a good pair of flip flops, of course!
    Great post!

  15. I don’t own any skirts. I do not feel comfortable doing all the sitting, stooping, therpies and leaning over that I need to do with a baby while wearing a skirt. Modesty is important and although there might be a few skirts out there that would work, I will stick to my shorts and capris/crop pants.

    However, if I didn’t have little kids, I would probably love them.

    And I love both those options for shoes.

  16. Thanks for answering my question! I was hoping you’d say – Wear tennis shoes! But I guess I should’ve known better. 🙂

  17. I’m a flip flop girl, too. But those green shoes are ADORABLE!!! I’m not shoe shopping until this baby comes though. I have gone up in shoe size and my normal is a size 10….I refuse to buy bigger than a 10. I’m only 5’4″ for pete’s sake!!!!

  18. In the past couple of years I’ve accumulated more and more skirts. (Target has some cute ones every year.) I just ordered an a-line skort (yes, skort!) from Athleta that I think is going to be great for this summer. The only problem I run into is that I’m taller (5’9″) and many athletic-type skirts tend to run too short for me.

    I don’t know, it seems like now that I’m a grown-up in my 40’s, skirts just seem to look and feel better than shorts.

  19. I am short .4 ft 11 inch. I have a 3 year old daughter and have the bump in my tummy and saggy breasts too which I have got as part of motherhood.I am little bit fat [may show up as I am short]. Big thighs and back. I want to buy capris. [I am not thinking about skirts now] . Please suggest me something good.

  20. I started wearing skirts last summer, too! I can’t wait for the warm weather to get here so I can get in some again. I *almost* hated wearing jeans during this winter but couldn’t find any good alternative to the skirts. Long skirts in winter require tights and boots and stuff and that was just a bit much for me.

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