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Emily Henderson

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by Emily Henderson
pants for women

Early this week, the girls in the office were talking about the struggle of having so many pants that are too uncomfortable to actually sit in. This is a thing, and I once had to go home because of it and change. Most of them wear jumpers or overalls or dresses to the office. As much as I love my high-waisted button fly jam-it-all-in vintage Levi’s, if I know I have a big “sitting” day (or driving day or running around town in meetings day—basically doing anything except standing at a party) you couldn’t pay me to wear them, especially when it’s still warm out, after a summer of debauchery. Instead, I have 3-5 pants that I have found myself wearing ALL. THE. TIME. Pants that I feel look cool and are extremely comfortable. They have the comfort of sweats but are made out of material that looks stylish and pulled together. And no, they aren’t all drop-crotch but yes, the idea is that none of them cut in on your waist and do indeed give all the parts more room. It’s all about the proportion and silhouette. Let’s discuss.

pants for women

Shop the Look: SweaterShirt | Pants | Shoes

These are my new favorite jeans. I ordered them to see if this new slouchy jean thing would ever be flattering on me. At first, I didn’t like them because indeed they are baggy in the bum and I felt frumpy. But then I put them on with a chunky sweater and showed them to my crew before I sent them back and they all RAVED. It’s all about the styling with these. The next day, I wore them with a long fitted jacket and vintage tee, then with a French-tucked oversized blouse and soon I was wearing them every day. They are baggy, which is a thing but I didn’t know it would be my thing but because they are also tapered and cropped, there is a good shape going on here. I love clothes that play with proportions in a way that doesn’t look frumpy. With these, your waist has room, your crotch is free, your calves are the star (?!?!) AND you can sit, run around and get stuff done all day every day.

pants for women

Look at me sitting in such comfort! I’ll admit they are trickier to style out. The top half of your body and your shoes have to be considered because they can go real frumpy real fast. I like to do either a French tuck or wear something cropped like EHD’s new favorite sweater (it’s SO VERY GOOD).

pants for women

I’ve had that bag (I know it’s bad luck to put on the ground, sorry) for YEARS because it’s perfect, so well made, fits my laptop and has both cross-body and shoulder straps. It’s by Parker Clay, a wonderful, beautiful sustainable brand that cares about the world.

The clogs are from Madewell and are still available (and come in a few different colors). I have other clogs that are taller that I love, but can’t wear them every day. These are my “every day” clogs.

pants for women

1. Billie Distressed Relaxed Jeans | 2. Slim Boyfriend Jeans | 3. One Rip High Waist Boyfriend Jean | 4. Boyfriend Low Jeans | 5. The Summer Jean | 6. The Dad Jeans

pants for women

Shop the Look: Shirt | Pants (similar) | Shoes | Bag | Hat

Next are my “bow-legged” pants—not a historically desired silhouette of mine or possibly anyone, but when I saw them online (months ago) from the maker of my favorite drop-crotched pants (Nilli Lotan), I knew that I had to try them. I put them on and it was a “hell yes,” followed by a quick “WTF” from Brian, and I even asked you guys on stories and 80% of you said “hell no,” although Kristin Bell amongst other people whose fashion I love, DM’d me that it was a “hell yes.” The cut is strangely flattering (YET SO COMFORTABLE) because it does this thing where it bows out in the knees, making a lot of space between the legs. And this is not me promoting any sort of thigh gap, but yes this pretty much has a crotch to ankle “leg gap.” All I know is that if I go on a trip and forget them, I panic. I feel stylish in them, while comfort level is a 10.

I should have taken a pic of me just standing straight so you can see the shape of the leg—head to IG stories and I’ll put it up there.

pants for women

These pair are high end, and I bought them a while ago, but luckily this trend has finally trickled down to the more affordable brands, so we rounded up a few that are out now. (Nilli Lotan is one of the brands that I—and many other fashion companies—look to for things that feel more forward, but lucky for all of us that there are multiple markets for multiple budgets and if you wait a bit, usually a more affordable brand gets “inspired” by what they do and more pops up the following season. I feel that if you can support those that are taking the initial risk and really forging new ideas in the fashion/art/furniture/design world, we should. And those who want to wait one season for Madewell to remake it off at 1/2 the price, there’s a place for that, too.)

Speaking of, those Vince shoes that I wear almost every day (they give me a lift, they are super comfortable and I’m a big fan of the platform sneaker, stylistically) has a much more affordable version here, that we just found.

And yes, that is my favorite button-up (from Target), I wear a small which is still a bit oversized, but the cut is really good for layering. The front hangs down perfectly under sweaters and the color has a cute menswear style about it.

The belt bag is by local (now global) L.A. designer Claire V. I sat by her at a lunch last year and she was so sweet and humble and introduced herself as “Claire, a designer” and then an hour later I was like, WAIT YOU ARE CLAIRE V.???? I’ve had this one for a couple of years, but just bought this one.

And finally, the HAT. I get so many compliments on this hat, it’s stupid. I love it because it is really breathable; it looks like it’s a heavy felt, but it’s not. It’s just a really nice summer hat that shades my face really well (and amps up my outfit by a couple of notches).

pants for women

1. Pleated Carrot Jeans | 2. Slouchy Jeans | 3. OneTeaspoon Streetwalkers High-Waisted Jeans | 4. Tony Denim Pants | 5. Cargo Harem Pants | 6. Slouched Trousers

pants for women

Shop the Look: Shirt (similar) | Jacket (similar) | Pants | Shoes (similar) | Bag

Now THESE pants, at $35, are so cute and stylish and yes, still insanely comfortable. They have this really cute paper bag waist that I didn’t think/know I could pull off, but they have this awesome tapered shape that is, well, very cool. They aren’t as slimming as the other two, but their style level is high and when put with a crop top (!!!) and jacket, and booties that tuck under the hem, I feel like I’ve pulled together an outfit, like “I care.” Sometimes, that’s all we want to look like at work—that we are trying to be pulled together, while comfort is top of mind.

The shoes are by Nisolo and a couple of years old but I still wear them a lot. The circle bag is such a cute shape/size but warning that if you have an iPhone X, it BARELY fits because of its width. It closes, but it’s a struggle. The jacket I got last year from Nordstrom because I love and wear a plaid jacket ALL THE TIME. It is sadly unavailable but we found some similar ones here, here and here.

pants for women

1. Tie Front Linen Blend Pants | 2. Paperbag Waist Ankle Trousers | 3. Paperbag Jeans | 4. Harper Paperbag Waist Crop Pants | 5. Paper-Bag Jeans | 6. Terra High-Waisted Paperbag Pants

pants for women

We are trying out different types of fashion posts, sometimes trend-oriented (like this one that was INSANELY high in traffic) and others more about, well, clothes that I actually wear (like today). We also like to support brands of all budgets as we know that our audience has a wide variety of budgets. But I’d love to hear what fashion posts you’d like to see us try. I personally like the variety (fun trends, swimsuit reviews, comfort, and budget).

***photography by Veronica Crawford

  1. You nailed all the looks!! <3

  2. A lot of times when you all do fashion posts, you mention brands – like Parker Clay – that you really like supporting because they are sustainable, fair trade, made in the US, etc. Would it be possible to create a place on the website where these recommendations can be referenced? I haven’t been keeping notes but now wish I had! I really want to move my purchasing in this direction.

    1. that would be great. I’ve actually tried to find sights that do this, but the only one I found didn’t really have very much. I know we’ve written so many posts that could be searched. But maybe we could add it in the ‘shop’ section and have its own tab.

    2. Molly, you might find some useful info on stylebee.ca. Her style is more minimal than Emily’s but she has very thorough roundups of brands that operate ethically and transparently.

      1. Stylebee is good, as is thegarmentlife, but a lot of both their recommendations are in Canada, because that’s where they are located. I love hearing about designers and makers in California, because we do have fashion industry here. I want to support small, local makers, but I need more options, because so many have limited style choices. I appreciate learning about new designers. Thank you!

  3. Love the fashion posts. I’m also tired of wearing uncomfortable pants so I too am switching to jumpsuits etc. With budgets and trends in mind, I would love to see a thrifted post. I buy 80% of my clothes second hand. Not only from thrift stores but poshmark, eBay, and consignment stores. It’s super friendly to both your wallet and the environment. It’s also moving to the mainstream with thredup coming to retail stores.

    1. Ooh, lord knows i love to thrift. what would you want to see? is it more styling outfits or tips on how to thrift? The trick with that is that the outfits can’t really be recreated.

      1. I think a thrift store outfit challenge could be fun, like each of you get a small budget and have to put a full outfit together. The exact items can’t be recreated but the general looks could be….

      2. I think it could be fun if you tried to recreate an outfit you saw on like a celebrity or influencer with thrifted pieces.

    2. I can’t wear dresses to work so I love the idea of a jumpsuit but I just can’t handle my upper body being naked every time I have to pee (especially in winter) and every trip to the restroom takes twice as long as usual!

  4. This was awesome, Emily, yours is my favourite blog for the mix of fashion with just the right tone, beautiful spaces, a little bit of family life, and mostly your voice, which is always relaxed, humble, down to earth, and funny. These kinds of posts are the perfect fun little break. Keep doing exactly the variety you are currently doing!!

    1. thank you 🙂 very much. xx

  5. I would love to see posts about putting together outfits when incorporating a new pant silhouette- ie: so much of my wardrobe is built around the skinny leg, and now when trying to pull off the wider leg, I find myself struggling with tops and shoes to complete the look. This especially happens in dressing room- first reaction is eek, even if I know it is a hole in my wardrobe.

    1. Yes!
      I love even its. Well thought out outfit.

  6. You, girl, ads gorgeous!
    Thanks for the inspiration. I bought your cuffed jeans from the snake boot post. Love them. I’ll have something from here.
    Can you consider another round of fashion posts with your friend with the dog? Or does she have a blog? Thanks!!

    1. HA. yes! We are doing one on tuesday for next saturday. We shopped yesterday for it and she is making me wear wool socks with birkenstocks (amongst other things).

      1. So excited! Push that envelope!

  7. I’d like to see a post where you explore the topic of turtlenecks. Yes or no? I used to wear them almost every day in winter, but now I can’t…I just look like…a turtle. What would be some turtleneck strategies? Neckline types? Hmmm.

    1. hahahaha. yes. lets do this. I typically don’t wear them because I have larger boobs + i live in LA and we don’t really need them for warmth, but we were talking in the office about how many of us have secret boobs and buying sweaters is hard so we might do a post later in the all about buying sweaters (with help from an expert because honestly I don’t know!). /

      1. Yes, please do this! I love sweaters but it can be challenging to find a flattering fit with a larger chest- would love some expert guidance!

        And I loved this post as well. Your blog is always a fav and I appreciate how authentic your voice is; it makes these fashion posts even more fun to read.

        1. To help fit a larger chest in a sweater, look for dolman sleeves. The construction is more forgiving for the chest/belly. Gives some breathing room.

      2. Secret boobs!!!

  8. Loved seeing the jeans you shared Emily. As I mentioned in my comment on your post it’s rare that I am not in a pair of jeans. And, when I find one that fits really well I often by more than one and maybe the same pair in white, which I wear year-round. Thanks for your denim round-up and hope you have a great weekend. xo Elizabeth

    P.S. I have even gone to the “sale” rack of the men’s jeans and purchased really really inexpensive jeans. Then at home, cut the leg length fraying them and sometimes used a sewing machine to take in the leg width.

    1. OOH thats a good hack. I want to see!

  9. I’d love to see you guys all go thrifting together for clothes!! That would just be fun and then mixing what you got with your on trend stuff!

    I just like the whole blog really!

    1. that would be so fun. i mean, any excuse to go thrifting …

  10. Love the testing out the wider leg pant trend. I think there’s a new-ish shift in these fashion posts that I actually like. I didn’t like them prior to the bathing suit one.

    Uh-oh!…with the plastic cup AND the plastic lid. At least you didn’t have a plastic straw to get lodged up some turtle’s nostril.
    Every. Single. Choice. Is. An. Action. That. Makes. A. Difference. To. Our. Planet. And. Our. Children’s. Future.

    Please……small changes in our daily lives make a big difference.

    1. Its true. I should have brought my own cup 🙁 I was at a restaurant (not in california) recently EATING IN and they brought us all our meals in plastic to-go containers as if it was perfectly normal. Again, we weren’t doing takeout. Just wash a plate! I was appalled and of course said something and wanted to actually call them out on social media but then didn’t… maybe i should have…

      1. Thanx for owning it. It means a lot. For real.

        My best friend and I bought scones (yes, really! We’rein Australia, ha!) to go eat on a picnic blanket under a tree for some serious girl chat.
        We asked for take away and they gave them to us in a carboard box, with butter in a plastic cup, with a plastic lid, and five paper napkins!!

        Wot the!?

        We called them out on it (which rnded up bring slightly embarrassing for us, becauseof thd wait person’s attitude). We’re still glad we insisted on the butter being spread on the scones and we took one each, ON a napkin. However, this is likely to have had little more impact than being annoying to the girl that we dealt with.

        Your owning your bad, just encouraged me to follow up to the business owner via email about this, because we can all do better.

        Sometimes shaming people into right action is the only way and ‘somebody’ has to do it.

        We need to all be ‘somebody’ that cares enough to speak up and make the less convenient choices.

        Be the best Influencer you can be, Emily, because YOU have so much more power than any of we mere readers.

        1. I hope I’m missing something in your wording, but curious.. You ‘insisted’ on having the butter spread on your scones? I hope you did this yourself, and wrapped them in the napkins yourself, in which case you would have avoided the whole snafu..

  11. I’d like to think I’d never buy something that isn’t completely comfortable, um booties that are just collecting dust. I can style straight leg jeans with my eyes closed, and sometimes you’d swear I did, anything outside that box can challenge me. I’d like you and your staff to weigh in with tips for paper bag waist pants. Cropped pants. High waist. Anything else that’s a challenge.

    1. Agreed! I don’t have a super skinny tummy area and have a short torso so the trend of tucking tops into high waisted jeans AKA a French tuck just doesn’t work for me. The other trend is super cropped shirts that just aren’t appropriate for work. I’d love to see other tops paired with various types of pant styles (mid rise is back, cargo type trousers, etc)

  12. I LOVE your style so much! You are my shoe soulmate. Keep these posts coming!

  13. You look amazing in all outfits!
    Waqas | https://www.curtainsdubai.io

  14. I love the Amo denim! I’m curious, you said they’re baggy. Did you buy your usual size?

    1. I am curious about size too… Looks like they are “online only” so can’t try on in a store to figure out!!

  15. You look so cute! I read all your fashion posts and enjoy them all. Thank you for putting in some more budget-friendly alternatives today! I suppose I could afford some of the higher-priced options if they were really important to me, but that just isn’t my style.

  16. I especially enjoy your fashion posts. I love when you post stylish, affordable, and attainable suggestions. I have champagne taste on a beer budget. So sometimes I just want to see practicality. Thanks Emily!

  17. I really enjoy your California style. I have tried some of the online boutiques you have recommended like Everlane and was pleasantly surprised. I do like the baggier look and Uniqlo has an interesting curved leg cut in their current offerings that I am really enjoying. One thing I think needs to be considered when trying out different leg shapes is leg length. Often the pant needs the seam reshaped to adjust for a shorter hem. Also, I live in the Northeast so the croppier lengths are just not wearable for our very cold & snowy winters. Right now I am in the market for some fashionable waterproof snow boots!

  18. I love the COMFORT ones and budget. Thanks for including options. I really like the Saturday fashion posts mostly because I just like you, Emily. xo

  19. Thanks for showcasing a variety of price points! How about also including a variety of sizes/size inclusive brands?

  20. What about different ways to style 1 top (something plain everyone owns like a black t-shirt)? Or something along the lines of working with what you already own and styling it out different ways?
    PS: The fashion posts are cute but I’m totally here for the home stuff, as long as fashion doesn’t take over I’ll be happy. 🙂

  21. Love these fashion articles! It’s great to hear your view point! I would love it if you would include specific fit details like the hem should hit at the top of your ankle bootie, the hips should be loose, etc to help maneuver properly through the new trends. Fit is the most important to making it all look right!

  22. I’m so sorry, lady, but your friends are leading you so astray. Please wear things that accentuate your figure and don’t obscure it. If your pants are uncomfortable when you sit they’re too small. No need to wear giant bags on your body, or clunky shoes and clunky sweaters for balance. Just IMHO.

  23. Please take a look at how the ads have found ways to take up even more of the screen. The bottom of the screen ‘Harry Potter’ ad is so annoying. It has to be turned off every other second. I realize you need ads to pay for content but ads make it not-worth-it to try to look at the screen.

  24. Boy those Target pants sure sold out fast! I checked the website after I saw this post and saw there were plenty in stock, checked an hour later to order them and they were sold out EVERYWHERE! Either this is a coincidence or you have a huuuuge influence (I say it’s the latter). Thankfully I snagged a pair when they restocked…so excited to wear them! They’re so cute and cheap and you styled them perfectly!

  25. Love this cozy cute look for all! and such a beautiful and colourfull outfit .this is perfect size and also wear a jacket over this outfit

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