I did not like harem pants when they first came out, thinking that the saggy crotches looked ridiculous no matter what. Then I saw countless pairs styled to perfection on the streets of Tel Aviv when we visited Israel last year, and I started to change my mind. After the penny finally dropped I owned up to loving the look and I’ve been on the lookout for the perfect pair ever since.
I still don’t like harem pants when the ultra-low crotch point is combined with a low rise. This proportion still looks wrong to me because it creates an overly long-waisted effect. To my eye harem pants look best when the waistbands sit on the natural waist, because this shortens the torso and balances out the low crotch point.
Recently Ted Baker came out with a pair of harem pants that fit the bill. They are woven, silky, high in the waist, very drapy, the perfect length and beautifully made. And so very, very comfortable. Harem pants are an acquired taste so no worries if they aren’t your cup of tea.
I like to wear these pants in both dressy and more casual outfits. The example above is a dressy ensemble with Kate Spade heels and an asymmetrical sequined top. The harem pants make for a nice change when I don’t want to wear a pencil skirt or cigarette pants. If I had the perfect tuxedo jacket I’d have added that into this mix as a cover up.
This is a head-to-toe black outfit, which I will only wear if it’s adequately textured. That way I’ve added depth to the colour, creating attractive visual interest. I have several textures going on here: silky shine on the pants, transparent flowy chiffon and sparkly sequins on the blouse, a plain cotton camisole and cracked patent cut-out leather for the shoes. I also like to wear cream or white near my face when I wear a black top so that it softens the look against my pale skin. Another good reason to wear pearls!
Dare I say that this is one of my favourite outfits of the year. Eighteen months after my initial assessment of harem pants and I’ve come around, so never say never when it comes to fashion and style. My harem pants make me smile and at the end of the day, making a fashion trend work for you is about having fun. Stay tuned for a future post on how I wear them more casually.