Looking good in your trousers shouldn’t be rocket science. But whether it’s bell-bottoms or skinnies, flares or straight leg, sometimes these things conspire against you—whether that means your body shape or your state of mind.
Being 4’11” means whether I like it or not, my trousers are cropped leaving me with a very particular affiliation right now: cold ankles. What was once a chic, stylish, failsafe outfit choice no matter the occasion, that slight bit of skin exposed to the chill ruins my day. And it’s only going to get worse.
The solution? Well, it’s complicated but not as complicated as searching the high street for ‘normal’ trousers in a 26″ leg. Boots seem like the obvious answer, but figuring out where they rise with where the hemline stops is an equation I’m not fit to master. Tights, too, may seem like an obvious fix, but getting it ‘wrong’ might leave you looking like the Avril Lavigne impersonator.
This dilemma is overwhelming so I’ve done what I always do when met with one of life’s many challenges: I scroll through Instagram. While Instagram usually acts as a distraction from real-life problems, this time, well this time, it had the answer. Turns out the Instagram-cool-girls have conquered this conundrum a long time ago and know exactly what it takes to cover up your ankles in style.
Put these six outfit combinations into practice and your (warm) ankles will be grateful.
I get it – exposed socks are somewhat problematic. But there’s a special genre of thin sock that will look good with trainers, loafers and the like.
Look for a style that’s a bit weightier than a pair of opaque tights; Lurex is good because it’s slightly metallic and shows you’ve really thought about your ankle game as opposed to throwing on your fluffy socks.13
Glitter Lurex Ankle Socks, €9, & Other Stories
WIDE LEG + CALF HIGH BOOTS = GENIUS
As long as they’re not slouchy, culottes and generously-cut wide-legs bottoms should work in harmony with a proper pair of calf boots underneath. Choosing a tall pair of boots that end right at the hemline will make for a more refined look. This way your outfit flows together and hey, if it’s good enough for VB. 13
Leather Cowboy Wedge Heel Boot, €119, Zara
GIVE IN TO THE SOCK BOOT TREND
Sock boots have officially become an integral part of many fashion girls’ wardrobes. If you have yet to jump on board this trend, I have a feeling I know why. Is it because you honestly have not the slightest idea what to wear with them? Same.
But it appears that a sock boot and cropped trousers is what gin is to tonic, the perfect accompaniment. Like a second skin, they will hug your lower calves snugly and slot nicely under hems with only the slightest of gaps. 13
Monki stretch ankle boots with block heel, €62.21, ASOS
TRY ANKLE BOOTS WITH ANKLE GRAZERS
Will there be a slight wedge of skin? Yes but compared to what you’re used to this is nothing. Granted, not every pair of ankle boots on the high street will possess this magical optimum length, but try shoes on at home first before making a big investment. 13
ARROW Leather Black Flat Leather Boots, €110, Topshop
Okay, I know I just said tights can’t work but Instagram has proven me wrong. Tights can provide a pop of colour beneath cropped pants for a unique look while also adding some much-needed warmth in the winter months.
Or match your tights to your boots for an elongating effect. Using this trick helps you to style any boots with cropped jeans, not just your cropped pairs.13
2-pack fine knit tights, €14.99, H&M
GO BACK TO BLACK
When in doubt, head-to-toe black makes your cropped pants with booties look instantly classic. Plus, it elongates your legs which is always a bonus when you’re 4’11”. 13
Elasticated Panels Leather Boots, €89.99, Mango