Guest Post: The Right Way to Wear Leggings

Sara Bimmel writes

We’re on the cusp of spring (FINALLY!), and that means leggings and tights will soon start to crop up everywhere. I know they’re fair-weather winter wear, too, but spring is the season when they’ll actually feel comfortable and won’t result in goosebumps all over your legs.

I often have trouble figuring out what to pair with leggings that will look classy instead of ’80s, so I put together this set to show my thoughts. You can see that there are a few common themes:

1) Prints with solids. Generally speaking, if your leggings have a lot going on, don’t pair them with a Hawaiian shirt, and vice versa. You can see that both the shoes and the leggings in outfit #3 are patterned, but they seem to go together naturally rather than clash.

2) Any shoes can work. By that, I mean it’s fine to pair flats, heels, or boots (see outfit #2) with leggings. If your shoes are flashy, see Theme 1 and keep the outfit simple.

3) Accessories should match the spirit of your outfit. What do I mean by that? Well, the black rose in outfit #3 is a little bit grunge, just like the rest of the outfit, and the layered gold necklace in outfit #4 reflects the layers of peacock feathers in the tights. The yellow balls in the necklace of outfit #1 add a pop of color and also mirror the rounded flowers in the dress.

4) Don’t limit yourself to dresses. I paired the leggings with dresses here because I think that can be a tricky combination, but they’d go just as well with skirts or long tunic tops.

This post was contributed by Sara Bimmel, who writes about Halloween costumes over at www.StarCostumes.com.

9 Comments

  • February 23, 2010

    Coppelius

    The right way to wear leggings? Don’t WEAR leggings AT ALL!!! They should rest in peace in the tomb of 80’s fashion crimes! ;o)

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    • February 24, 2010

      Amee

      Remember-a girl with access to leggings may choose to put them under her mini skirt, so the rest of us don’t have to suffer.

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  • February 23, 2010

    Luve

    Forget about leggings. I love those red pumps…

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  • February 23, 2010

    Cookie

    Well I suppose there is no way around leggins, one way or another, but the idea of wearing them with sandals is just a tad too strange for my taste. Does anyone do this? How is it explained? Why?

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  • February 23, 2010

    Rock Hyrax

    I think patterned leggings go best with a long tunic top (or very short dress), otherwise there’s just a funny short stretch of pattern that looks a bit weird. Mind you I’m not a fan of loud patterns on them – black with grey is as far as I’ve ever gone (and I still have the pair in my “nostalgia” collection of clothing).

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  • February 24, 2010

    Jasmine

    I like leggings… I don’t get why no one else seems to. Leggings are much warmer than tights and very versatile…but wearing them as trousers in a huge no no especially with crocs and cracked feet.

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    • February 24, 2010

      The Fashion Police

      I like them as well – I don’t really understand all of the hate they seem to inspire! As long as the crotch/butt is covered, I don’t see a problem with them, although I must admit, I’m not keen on the garishly patterned ones.

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  • February 24, 2010

    zeezee

    Ye-e-es, I don’t do well with “fashion rules”. Too reminiscent of oddly intrusive older ladies who will freely comment on what “ladies” should and shouldn’t wear. I’ll figure it out myself, thanks.

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  • February 26, 2010

    cmap

    yes, but what about leggings with shorts? It’s all the rage in Japan right now, and its pretty cute. Any suggestions on that type of pairing? So far, I’m thinking capri length black leggings with black cuffed shorts and a striped top…

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