Crazy for Culottes

Did you guys know I have an affinity for humongous pants? Or should I say…trousers. I keep confusing people over here because in the UK they call their underwear ‘pants,‘ so when I say I like huge pants, people think I have a soft spot for over-sized undies. Not the case.

Anyway, after a very brief foray into the world of skinny pants (see here and here), my thighs and butt rebelled, refusing to be confined to tight fabrics forevermore. My love for XXX-L trousers has never been stronger, so it’s no surprise that the SS14 culotte trend piqued my interest in a big way.
culottes harpers bazaar


Spring 2014 Emporio Armani, Proenza Schouler, and Aleander Wang – via Harper’s Bazaar

Culottes are a throwback style (because blah blah what was old is new again, blah blah recycled fashion), but one that is easily modernized by today’s designers and the women who wear their clothes. They come in a variety of lengths and widths, each flattering to a different body type, but my favourite is the mid-calf length. I never found any in Canada that I liked; on my very first shopping day in the UK, I found the perfect pair!

madison topshop culottes


Via my Instagram (@muchloveMB)

Proportion is key when wearing culottes; a petite girl is not going to get away with wearing the same pair as someone six inches taller than her. Your leg length is also important; I love these TopShop culottes because they are a touch high waisted with a more generous crotch area…if you know what I mean? Words are failing me. Basically, in the wise words of Entourage‘s Johnny Drama, I’m “top tall,” meaning that while I’m on the taller end, most of my height actually comes from the waist up. If I wear the wrong proportions, my legs end up looking super stumpy. These culottes give the illusion that my legs are longer than they are. The heels are also key to that trickery.

topshop & river island printed culottes

TopShop palm print culottes, £40.00 – available hereRiver Island blue floral print culottes, $24 US – available here.

paul & joe and zara culottes

Paul & Joe Phuket leather culottes, $980 – available hereZara printed culottes, $15.99 – available here.

Switch up the styling and you can easily take culottes through almost any occasion. Pair with a blouse, heels, and a blazer and you’re off to the office; strappy shoes and a cami and you’re on a date; platforms, crop top, and a bomber jacket and you’re out for drinks with the girls.

culottes elle

Via Elle 

suno & joseph culottes

Suno printed washed-silk culottes, $450 – available hereJoseph Billy pleated washed-silk culottes, $485 – available here.

My advice to any who care to dabble in this particular trend: you might have to try on several styles before you find the one for you. Don’t be discouraged if the first pair doesn’t do it for you, and don’t hesitate to get a little tailoring done. Hemming even just an inch makes a big impact when we’re talking about visually bisecting our calves.

zara & topshop culottes asos & asos curve

Zara culottes with belt, $29.99 – available hereTopShop snakeskin textured culottes, £50.00 –  available hereASOS pleat culottes, $51.63 – available hereASOS Curve tailored culottes, $64.54 – available here

All right, pals. Get to it! Life’s too short to not wear massive trousers.

Much love, Madison Blake

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