OK so we have had a stream of fantastic weather and I’m seeing lots of shorts when I’m out and about. I’m wearing them more myself too!

But wearing shorts can be a tricky, are my legs too short? Are my legs too skinny? Are my legs too pale?  So finding a pair that fits and flatters , and makes you feel confident can be hard.  Sure I’ve got shorts that I wear to go to the gym in, and shorts that I wear round the house or to do gardening, but they certainly aren’t the most glamorous shorts, more a functional style than a dress short.

Shorts are one of those clothing items that are often difficult for many women past the age of 40 to wear. We may not be particularly keen on showing off a lot of leg, yet the most flattering style for many may be a shorter short – yes you heard me!

1. Keep the leg opening narrow – the wider the short leg opening, the wider you look (horizontal line rule), so keeping your short leg opening narrower creates a sleeker profile.

2. The longer your legs the longer the short – Bermuda and City Short styles suit longer legs and shorter bodies.

3. The shorter your legs, the shorter the short – Mid-thigh and shorter shorts suit shorter legs and longer bodies.

4. If you’re not sure, go with a mid-thigh length with a narrow leg opening and a mid-rise.

5. End shorts on a narrower point of your thigh – legs go in and out – ending hems (horizontal lines) on narrower points is always more flattering.
Pretty simple really!

But lets face it on a hot day, a pair of shorts are a great asset to your wardrobe, for one no problems with my thighs rubbing uncomfortably (cos seriously, who actually has a thigh gap? – Not me). But you also want the comfort and convenience of shorts but how to wear them?

How to Style Shorts
1. Shorts are, shortening, so elongate with colour. They are basically a garment that is almost always wider than it is long (which tends to have a widening effect – so beware). So what you wear with them can make a big difference to whether or not you appear shorter and wider, or taller and slimmer. Slightly longer shorts can help in this equation, but my favourite way to wear shorts is in a column of colour (all the same colour)

2. Another option is to go for a lower contrast colour or print between top and bottom. Remember if you need to add contrast you can do so with jewellery, layers such as a camisole underneath a shirt would work well too.

3. Wear a wedge or slightly heeled shoe. This helps to make your legs look longer (and face it, there aren’t too many of us who don’t want longer legs). This is particularly important if you don’t want to wear a ballet flat, or low sandal which are other shoe options. The height of the wedge will help to give your legs back length and you will look slimmer.

4. Don’t forget to accessorize. Just because they’re shorts doesn’t mean they have to be sloppy. Yes shorts are a more casual item, so don’t wear all your sparkly jewellery with them, but a great necklace or earrings will create a more finished look, or alternatively a light summer scarf could be a great option.

Use your body shape to find a flattering waistband shape (paperbag waists, only for I shapes and the very long torsoed woman), the fit around the hips and thighs should be like any other trouser. Got a long rise? Then look for a higher rise rather than low rise short.

The truth is, if you have fuller thighs naturally or fit into the apple or pear shape category, shorts will never be as flattering as a skirt.

If your not sure of your bodyshape or what really suits then please get in touch, understanding your bodyshape is one of the main areas I cover in my Image Consultations. Once you know this you will find shopping and styling your body much easier.

So put on your shorts and enjoy the sunshine, grab your favourite cocktail and relax!

Natasha x

Appearance & Attitude – natasha@appandatt.com