The Long and Short of Shorts

Shorts aren?t known for being flattering, but it would be unfair to your sweat glands to endure pants through the summer months. Despite the perils of showing knobbly kneecaps and a forest of leg hair, shorts can be a stylish piece as well as functional.

Are your shorts short?


As the name would have you believe, shorts are meant to be short. At their longest, shorts should reach to the bottom of your knee. Beyond this and they become cut-off pants, which are not a good look on anyone.

There is also a limit to the shortness of your shorts. An inch or two above the knee is acceptable, more than that and you?re showing too much leg. The ideal length is just above the knee, but of course it?s not always possible to buy off-the-shelf shorts which are exactly the right length. Not to worry though, as you have a few inches of leeway for acceptable lengths.

You don?t need to be covered in pockets

Your shorts should have no more than four pockets- two at the front and two at the back. This leaves you ample room for your essential wallet, phone and keys. There is no need for you to wear utility shorts covered in unsightly pockets. Excessive pockets are commonly seen on young children- which is not your desired look. Having few pockets on your shorts is more streamlined and stylish.

Colors and patterns

Shorts are quite an informal piece of clothing, so you have ample freedom to play around with different designs. Block colored shorts in neutral shades are a classic staple. You could bring your shorts into this season by donning the current trendy colors of rust and blue. Or, add interest to the bottom half of your outfit in checked or stripy shorts. As long as your shorts aren?t covered in pockets, a patterned material won?t look too busy.

Denim shorts

Denim shorts can be quite contentious. Some swear they?re a fashion faux pas, others think that if jeans are acceptable, then they should be fine in short form too. But maybe it?s all a matter of finding the right jean shorts, or ?jorts?. Note: nobody would proudly wear an item of clothing called jorts, it is a name used by those opposed to the garment.

Stonewash or acid wash denim shorts are best worn in the 1970s and 1980s. Today, wearers of stonewashed shorts are those who give denim shorts a bad name. But dark blue, black or grey denim shorts tend to look good.

What shoes go with shorts?

The summer staple of flip-flops goes well with shorts, but if you want to look a little smarter there are other footwear options. Boat shoes or loafers also go well, although because your socks will be visible you will want to be careful about sock length. In general, the less sock the better. Ankle socks are good, ones which extend halfway up your calf are a big no-no.

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About Natasha Abrahams Natasha Abrahams is a writer and journalism student from Melbourne, Australia. When she is not busy with being a principal writer on Weekendnotes or skipping lectures, she can be found emptying her wallet at the nearest shopping centre. You can read more from Natasha at: