More on Long-Over-Long Proportions
Yesterday, I did my transitional version of the long-over-long trend using a maxi skirt from summer and a new top I purchased for exactly this purpose. Today, I thought I'd look at the various ways this trend takes shape for the upcoming F/W season.
Tunics over Floor-Grazers
The title image on this post exemplifies the easiest and most classic way to participate in this trend: pairing a tunic-length top with floor-length bottoms. This is what I did yesterday with a maxi skirt, and you can also wear this look with wide-leg pants or jeans.
The trick with this combo is to balance the top and bottom proportions with opposing volume. In the examples below, we see voluminous, flowing tops paired with pants that fit very closely to the knee before flaring outward. You will get the same effect with a voluminous top and skinny jeans. My version featured a more voluminous skirt, so I reigned in the volume on top with a shaped tank.
As always when wearing floor-grazing bottoms, you will have the easiest time feeling long and lean in heels and a proper hem. The heels don't have to be monster platforms, but even a slight heel helps provide a clean leg break in the pant and boost your height. Hemmed pants also prevent puddling, which makes you look shorter than you are.
Midis over Midis-and-More
Although this is not exactly a timeless look, the concept of pairing midi tops and coats with floor- and midi- length bottoms isn't that much of a stretch. The precedent is there in the convention of wearing long coats with dresses, for example. This combo is also very wearable, since it definitely can't chop you in half visually. You can't help but create a long line here.
One of the dangers surrounding this look, though, is that it is often shown in concert with lots of volume and little structure. This looks super modern and chic if you are tall and angular but, the shorter and curvier you are, the more it will help you to err on the side of narrower, tailored pieces. If you are worried about your legs and ankles, try having your top layer hemmed to a flattering part of your leg, keeping your layers low in contrast to one another, and extending your leg line with a shoe in a similar color to your bottom (both pics are excellent examples of this last bit).
Another thing to keep in mind is that you want an intentional-looking stagger between the top and bottom, not just an inch or two.
Knee-Slappers over Ankle-Slappers
Last but not least, let's look at this whole business of pairing knee-length tops with cropped bottoms. I consider this the most advanced/dangerous/trendy spin on the long-over-long idea, because it's the most difficult to pull off without drastically warping your body proportions. If you aren't careful, you end up with a super-long torso balancing on tiny stubs of legs. Take a cue from these models, and make sure to counterbalance the things that draw the eye down (long top, cropped pants) with things that pull the eye up (high waist, tucked in tops, buttons or belts at the waist, a bag worn high on the body) and things that unify the look from top to bottom (shoes similar in color to pants, low contrast, lighter/brighter colors on top).
Whew! All that work just to wear the things you always heard you shouldn't, right? But this is one way to have fun with clothing and avoid falling into monotony. It's also a way to use things you might already own in a way that looks fresh, current, and creative. Enjoy!