Pant Lengths for Spring 2013 and Beyond

Wearing The Pants

Capri Pants

Capri pants were introduced by European fashion designer Sonja de Lennart in 1948, and named after designer Emilio Pucci’s home town Isle of Capri He sold the pants in his boutique on the Isle of Capri. These first capri pants were slim fitting and came to just below the knee. A small notch in the hemline allowed for ease of movement. Celebrities, including Audrey Hepburn and Marilyn Monroe were photographed in capri pants.


The general length for capri pants falls midway between the knee and ankle.

While capris offer the coolness of shorts but with more coverage, they are still tricky to wear if you are petite or if you have short legs in proportion to the rest of your body. They will, in fact, make you look shorter because the eye stops at the bottom of the hem of the pant thus shortening your leg.

One idea to elongate the look when wearing capris is to keep both your top and bottom the same or similar color. As shown in the top image at the right. What would be even better is to have the shoe in the same color as the pant giving an even more streamlined look (see the bottom picture).

Modern Capri Pants

Today, pants that fall anywhere from below the knee to mid calf are typically sold as capri pants. They can be quite slim-fitting or much looser and are available in both casual fabrics and somewhat dressier ones.

Pedal Pushers

Pedal pushers, sometimes called motor scooter slacks describe pants that can be a bit longer or shorter than capri length. They were designed to make outdoor activities like bike riding more convenient and safer. Another name for the more casual look of a capri-length pant is Clam Diggers. Quite baggy and often cuffed, they generally have a nautical feel (think wading into the harbor to dig for clams!) and in 2013 have expanded into the cargo pant at capri length.

Cropped Pants

Cropped pants are everywhere this season. They hit just above the ankle bone, and this hemline can be difficult to wear as it makes just about everyone look shorter. Again, one way to accentuate a longer, leaner look is to match the hem color of the pant to the shoe you are wearing, whether it be a flat or a heel. Also, cropped pants that are plain and tapered tend to be much more flattering due to the fact that they provide a straight line. Also, because they are more closely related to their full-length counterparts, they are more conservative, and therefore more appropriate for business and dressier occasions. In addition, they are always a good way to show off your shoes, so make sure yours are fabulous.

In order to achieve a polished look, it helps to know exactly where your pant line should hit on your leg or foot.


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