Wide Leg Pants for the Skinny Jeans Addict

Amelia Diamond | January 6, 2016

Katie Sturino is back and hot to trouser

Pants shouldn’t feel scary, but they are. They bring up all sorts of emotions and highlight awful truths and illuminate insecurities about things that no one will ever notice — no one except for you and that rude, rude mirror (in a poorly-lit dressing room, I can almost guarantee you).

Skinny jeans, meanwhile — a different category from pants — have become something of a security blanket. Despite the fact that certain pairs require a vat of vaseline to “slip” into, they feel slimming. They shloop us in like Spanx, push the butt up like a renaissance chest and pair well with everything. They’re easy.

Which made me feel kind of bad when a few months ago, I told Katie Sturino in a purely hyperbolic fit that skinny jeans were dead. Dead, I repeated for dramatic measure.

They’re not dead. I was A) projecting and B) eager to see Katie in something other than a denim tube sock. JUST for once. For fun! To live vicariously through her like a stage mom on Dancing with the Babies or whatever that show is called!

So we decided to give the ultimate pant, the wide leg trouser, the old college try.

Tory Burch sweater, Eileen Fisher pants, Vass shoes (similar here), Vanessa Bruno bag

And immediately, Katie was like, “Bye!”

Full disclosure: the above look freaked her out. She said it was boxier than she’d normally lean, but thennn guess what else she said? She felt cool.

Pause for tip: when doing a boxy top with a wide-leg pant, think structure. One or the other should hold its shape in order to keep you from feeling messy-in-a-bad-way.

In the next round, we sexed her up a bit. Actually, technically all I did was suggest a bodysuit to balance out the volume down below and Katie, per usual, added the sex.

Tuxe bodysuit, ASOS pants, J.Crew shoes, Equipment scarf, NYDJ coat, Karen Walker sunglasses
Tuxe bodysuit, ASOS pants, J.Crew shoes, Equipment scarf, NYDJ coat, Shinola notebook


And because that was her vibe/a happy compromise, in round three, we kept the same idea and swapped out the items.

AYR turtleneck sweater (another option here), Eileen Fisher wool pants, J.Crew shoes, Karen Walker sunglasses, Mother of Pearl clutch
AYR turtleneck sweater (another option here), Eileen Fisher wool pants, J.Crew shoes, Karen Walker sunglasses, Mother of Pearl clutch

Pause for tips: In general, with wide-leggers, buy the size for your thighs and then tailor the tummy and length. They look best when they hit right at the waist, are less scary with heels but can work with a sneaker if you don’t let the foot fabric pool.

Consider these pants the next time you’re washing your skinnies. Let them be your nighttime alternative or interview killer. Think of them as a new way to babe; a different kind of clothing rhyme.

Besides, you know what they say, right?

The bigger the pants, the bigger the dance.

Photographed by Krista Anna Lewis; outfit credits and more styling tips in slideshow above. Follow Katie Sturino on Instagram @the12ishstyle, and check out her website here.


  • Mandy

    Katie, thank you for trying this despite your reservations! You look stunning, and it gives me hope that I can wear wide-leg pants too without looking like a box on top of a box. Might have to go brave some dressing rooms…

  • A Girl

    lookin so gooodd d d d dd!

  • katie rocks it!! i still don’t think i could. maybe that will be a resolution- buy a wide leg.

  • Stephanie

    Nice looks! It’s such a great inspiration becuase I’m looking for wide leg pants to my upcoming blog post.


  • Stephanie

    Wow! The only word that applies here. Great looks!

  • Amanda Orlando

    The burgundy pants are amazing!

  • These looks are all fab but what do you do when you’re short and have skinny legs? I swear every pant that isn’t skinny that I’ve tried on looks horrible on me.

    • Amelia Diamond

      I’m really short too (though I do not have skinny legs) and I feel best in a wide leg pant that is HIGH waisted, like the band covers my belly button, with a pair of platforms as shoes so that I’m extra tall. (In the winter I just wear thick socks with the platforms. Doesn’t really matter because your pants cover the shoes.)

  • Kerrith

    I’ve been through a lot of wide leg pants and as a bigger girl I’ve had a really hard time. I recently bought a pair of side zip wide leg pants and LOVE them. The flat front is really flattering, at least to me. I love the first look with the turtleneck!!! When you have bigger boobs everyone tells you to always go for a V-neck, but I recently said screw it and started wearing turtlenecks and I think they look great!

    • Amelia Diamond

      I really think turtlenecks look great on everything, even turtles!

      • Kerrith

        I feel great in them and my husband said, “Your boobs look great in that shirt.” So, it’s a win-win.”

  • Love all of these pants! So great!

    xx, Elise

  • Beatrice

    “They shloop us in like Spanx, push the butt up like a renaissance chest and pair well with everything”

    Butt buttressing.

  • Chelsey

    Nice job!! As a fellow curvy girl I find the key to making this look work is to pair with a fitted basic top to create the hourglass shape and let the bold silhouette speak for its self! Can’t go wrong with these! http://www.blankstyle.com/shop-brand/bella-canvas/8750-bellacanvas-ladies-sheer-rib-long-sleeve-v-neck-t-shirt

  • Charlotte

    I LOVE the Eileen Fisher pants you’re absolutely rocking with that turtle neck – but the link is to the cropped version! Is there an actual floor/regular length version?? (plz say YAS)

  • Pia Sophie

    picture 6: so sexy. what does flattering even mean?

  • “The bigger the pants, the bigger the dance.” I’ll be repeating this mantra in my head for the remainder of 2016. Thank you, Amelia.

  • Nicole

    Love, Love, Love!! Thank you MR for continuing to feature Katie and promote all body types, it’s so refreshing!! Katie – LOVE what you are doing with @The12ishStyle!!!!!

  • chouette

    F**k yeah! I love to see another girl with big boobies rocking a boxy top AND big pants at the same time! Trying this ASAP I think my office is sick of my crop top and trousers lewk.

  • Leah

    I am also DONE with skinny jeans. Not sure I can go full on Wide Pant but I’m happily in the middle in some chinos 24/7. After reading this though, maybe Wide Leg will be my 2016 2nd quarter look.

  • ExtraExtraStyle

    Katie, you look amazing! I love what you’re doing with @The12ishStyle and I’m glad that ManRepeller continues to feature such an inspirational woman. There is a such a void in the market for stylish full-figured gals like you (and full-figured dudes like me).

  • I am sorry this is not meant to be unkind but I think these wide-leg pants look awful on the model. It’s not that I don’t like wide-legged pants, I do, but in my opinion the aesthetic is all wrong, and the shape is far too boxy. The model is very attractive but these outfits do not compliment her curvy figure. I will concede that the outfits may look better in ‘real’ life than in photos.

    • nygirltrappedinfl

      I agree completely…..Katie is a beautiful woman, but these pants are not working at all IMO.

  • I am sorry but I still adore my skinny jeans, (very) low waist the most. I really don’t like to wear a high-waist trousers or anything with a high waist actually. It doesn’t feel comfortable at all. These wide-leg pants look well on Katie by the way. Love the pictures.

  • Eileen Tan

    Love this! Kudos to Katie for stepping out of the comfort zone and looking like a million dollars!

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