Have you tried a pair of paperbag waist pants? Styling them can be tricky, so read on for tips for styling a paperbag waist pants outfit.
It’s an interesting name for pants, right? Whenever I see them, I’m reminded of those movie star icons of the 1940s who styled them so beautifully.
So, what exactly are paperbag waist pants? To be considered a paperbag waist, the pants have to be high-waisted, cinched at the waist, and gathered with fabric coming out the top, above the cinched area.
The ruffled waistline is balanced by the elongating effect of the pant legs and can actually flatter the body. This is a good thing for almost all women, and particularly for those of us with shorter legs.
With their looser fit, paperbag waist pants are known for their comfort. But they are also a very chic piece for your wardrobe that you can wear to the office, school, running errands, or even a night out. Because of the ruffled waistline and extra volume, they can often be tricky to style. The key with paperbag waist pants is balancing the looser fit on the bottom with a tighter or shorter top. Not only does that provide a more proportioned look, it helps the waist detail stand out. Pairing the right accessories with the pants is also important, so you can create the most flattering silhouette for your figure.
Because of the ruffled waistline and extra volume, they can often be tricky to style.
So, read on for tips on how to style a paperbag pants outfit…
How to Style a Paperbag Waist Pants Outfit
Tips for Styling
- Choose the right style for your body shape
- If you are Petite, choose a cropped or ankle length
- Select a wider-legged style if you are Plus size to balance out your waistline
- Choose a form-fitting top, like a tee for a casual look, a snug-fitting sweater or a fitted blouse for a dressier look
- Tuck in the top to create a balance silhouette
- Add layering pieces like a jacket that won’t add bulk, with a cropped or a longer piece
- Add a slim belt that allows the pleat detail to stand out
- Choose a shoe that adds height to elongate your look
- Add statement earrings or a necklace to draw attention upward
A fitted top shows off the detail in the pants and balances the wide pleated area at the waist. You do want to show off the paperbag detail!
A black and white combo is always a classic look and you can’t go wrong with this color combination. The black top and ivory pants outfit styled here is from Express. While I haven’t done a great deal of shopping from Express, I must say that I am impressed with some of my recent purchases.
When I was working in an office full-time, I wore mostly slacks and blazers. My go-to for slacks was Nordstrom and Talbots and very often, from Express. With my more casual bent, I am finding they have some really nice things.
I’ve been looking for some winter- or off-white pants. When I saw these, I was intrigued. I do have another pair of paperbag waist style pants in a plaid pattern that I styled in the post Checkered Plaid Trousers, Fall Style. Since I liked those very much, I decided to give these a try. After trying this pair in ivory, I was sold.
The pants are styled in a tapered ankle style, which is flattering for almost any shape. They are available in long, regular and short. I can see these styled with a tee and sneakers and with a long cardigan and a traditional blouse for the office. There is a matching double-breasted jacket if you are looking for a suit.
Not a fan of snakeskin print? Even though it’s highly popular this season, I know that some ladies just can’t style a head-to-toe snakeskin look without a little cringe. Am I right? However, by adding just a bit, as in the snakeskin trimmed topped and paperbag pants outfit, it can really add a classic touch. Against either black or white, it can really pop!
Remember my comment about saving those seemingly out-of-style handbags? This snakeskin clutch has been in my closet a LONG time but it makes the perfect accompaniment to this outfit, closely matching the snakeskin print in the top. You never know when that old piece might serve as the perfect accessory to your outfit!
While the blouse isn’t exactly fitted–violating the above rules! Lol!–the fabric is malleable enough to tuck it in tightly, so I decided it works for me! Those “rules” are guidelines only–it’s up to each of us to interpret them as we see fit! Give a paperbag waist pants outfit a try–you will love the flattering look!