Life is short: how to wear shorts

I totes love shorts in the summertime. Never in a million years will I show off my giant floppy batwing arms; for me, sleeveless anything is a no-go-scenario (except for a tank to exercise in). But weirdly, for some reason, I am fine with my age-ed speckly orange peel legs hanging out for the world to see. Ah well, we all have our boundaries, hey. Wondering how to wear shorts? I’ve got you covered.

This season the big things in shorts are my arse-cheeks. Only kidding. The big things are: gorgeous patterns in short shorts, beautifully tailored walking shorts and culottes. Yes, you heard me. The nonchalant culotte. Those kinda weird 3/4 length, skirt-slash-pant things.

You may remember these from such goodtimes as the class of ’82, when you wore them in a vampiric shade of maroon velvet with a matching vest. But they’re much nicer these days. And in fact they’re not TRUE shorts if we’re going by the dictionary definition, but if you don’t like showing off anything above the knee, the culotte may indeed be your friend.


There’s no doubt that we all should be careful when trying one’s hand at pants that are cropped. They can look quite disastrous. But why not give them a go, you might love them!

Clockwise from top left: Bardot Eve Crop Pant; Sportsgirl Pleated Culotte; Forever New Karlie Crepe Culotte; Anthropologie Culottes; Bardot Leopard Culotte; Sussan Black Culotte

My first rule of Culotte Club is….

When I refer to culottes, please understand I am not referring to those revolting 3/4 cropped pants that people get about in at the shopping centre. I really LOATHE those cheap, cropped trousers. And why do they only come in vile tones of mould, dust or buff? I feel quite strongly that they should be banned.

I also am not a fan of the cardigan, and if you care to read about that, you can here and here.

My second rule of Culotte Club is…

To maximise your awesomeness in the culotte, try a few on and select the best one for your body shape. Lean ladies go ahead and swathe yourself in a flowing baggy pair. If you are curvier I’d suggest you go for strong tailoring and structure. Height challenged ladies, you may need to avoid, look out for whether they cut you off and give the illusion you are, well, very short. Statuesque ladies, run out now and buy some culottes, these could very well be your favourite statement piece for summer. Very busty ladies, these can be super flattering as the flared leg can perfectly offset your top half.

My third rule of Culotte Club is…

Team with something fitted on the top to balance the bottom half. White culottes with a white fitted tank, a 3/4 sleeve black jacket and black heels. A patterned pair with a tailored black or white tee and nude stilettos. A black pair with a brightly coloured, sixties style cropped top (i.e. sitting on the waist, I’m not suggesting anything Britney-esque) and flats. I’d break my fitted-top rule to wear them them teamed a slouchy white t-shirt and a pair of slides.

Short Shorts

If you are confident to let your baggy old pins hang out then, here’s a quick edit of my favourites this summer. I adore all the beautiful botanical patterns and bright colours. The great thing about short shorts is you can dress them up or down, wear them with a sparkly top and heels for cocktails, or team with a button down shirt and lace ups for brunch.

I love em!

Clockwise from top left: The Iconic Thurley Botanica Shorts; Witchery Sateen Shorty Short; Witchery Viscose Creme Short; camilla and marc Russet Short; The Iconic Suboo Tropical Print Shorts; Marcs Shorts in Flame; Country Road Plaid Shorts; Ladakh Juicy Floral Shorts 

Walking Shorts

I personally believe that longer line shorts look best on ladies that are slim on top (or perhaps it’s even long-waisted?). I don’t wear these myself as I am very busty and short waisted and they always seem to make me look a bit frumpy, they’re just the wrong shape for me. However I know many girls that wear these and look absolutely fantastic! I think teaming with a striped tank and white sandshoes looks fantastic, or you could try a collared shirt and wedge heels.

Clockwise from top left Kate Sylvester Marina Short; Country Road Stretch Short; Mix Apparel Walking Short; Susan Herringbone Short; The Iconic Rider by Lee Bumster Shorts; Country Road Linen Shorts 

What do you think? Could you go a good short? Which style is more you?


Written By

Gillian is a marketing savant and brand strategist with over 20 years of experience in above and below the line marketing, digital strategy and creative direction. She is an exceptional people person who loves to collaborate with clients every step of the way to achieve the best possible outcome. Gillian is also a successful makeup-artist and make-up obsessive who loves to share her tricks of the trade and help women to look good and feel great.


Leave a Reply