The Wrong Trousers?

Call them what you will: culottes, cropped trousers, awkward trousers, there is just no escaping this year's favourite trouser style. They are a bit of a Marmite-garment as they seem both very right and very wrong at the same time. Get it right and you'll pull off a cool, on-trend look; get it wrong and you'll look three foot six. I am determined for them to be the right trousers so I've been scouring the High Street for lots of lovely examples....

My first is this pair from Zara. If anyone is going to get these right it's Zara. They have a knack for making fashion-led items more wearable. I have this denim pair and I love them. The denim is quite thick giving the trousers a structured feel. Be warned they are quite high-waisted so avoid if you are short in the body - or just make sure your top is bloused out over the waistband. I've worn mine with a patterened shirt and flat sandals and will move onto knee high boots and a chunky knit when the chill sets in.

Clare Edwards Personal Styling

Cropped trousers - £39.99 Zara

If you're wanting to try this look out as part of your office wardrobe then J Crew have the perfect pair. They come in a variety of colours and would look super-slick with a striped shirt and pointed heels. Add white trainers and a plain tee to dress them down at the weekend.

Clare Edwards Personal Styling

Patio pant - £89.50 J Crew

The Autumn is going to have a big 70s vibe about it and there is no pattern more reminiscent of the era than paisley. This silk pair from French Connection are beautiful. Wear with heels to stop the pajama look (unless you're after that kind of thing....) and pair with white now and navy later.

Clare Edwards Personal Styling

Sundown silk flared trousers - £120 French Connection

The sports luxe trend of recent years has made it slightly more acceptable to wear jogging bottoms out of the house (still not so in my view but then I'm not Vogue). Ideally these are made from some luxurious fabric so as not to be confused with your gym gear and this pair from Gap are a great combination of comfort and style. They also come in black and both colours are available in petite, regular or tall so they should be suitable for just about everyone. Again I would wear these with heels to prevent them from looking like aforementioned gym gear (but in a size too short) and keep the top half fitted.

Clare Edwards Personal Styling

Pull-on wide leg pants - £39.95 Gap

My final offering is from River Island (they really are doing some jolly nice things at the moment) and they are the pair most suited to your casual wardrobe. Everyone knows the leg-lengthening powers of vertical stripes so this should counteract the cropped nature of the trousers when worn with flats. These would go wonderfully with today's style pick of the day (navy cut-out top from Atterley).

Clare Edwards Personal Styling

Navy smart striped culottes - £35 River Island

I intend to try out every one of these pairs and find the perfect ones (what if they're all perfect.....) and I think they are the ideal trouser to take you into autumn as they go rather nicely with knee high boots underneath. I have a feeling the wrong trousers are going to become the right trousers and we may just start to inch away from our beloved skinnies......well, you never know....