Published on June 10th, 2014 | by Miss Be Fit0
Hail to the Cut-off!
Summer is almost here, and of course, with a change in seasons, comes the massive ‘cull’ of wintery clothing and also, the restructuring of one’s summer wardrobe.
As I look through my summer threads I realize that I have a few ‘staples’ to my sun clothes. First being bikinis, dozens of them, lightly considered my ‘work uniform’ since I’m usually at the beach teaching SUP yoga, and of course for leisure. The next most common denominator I find in the pile is pairs upon pairs of cutoffs: faded, holey, dark with bleach-y patches, slightly frayed, majorly frayed, dark blue, white, vintage…you name it. I LOVE CUT OFFS! And I will wear ALL of them at some point, this summer.
I know I know, some people think these ‘Daisy Duke’ type shorts are only appropriate if you are in your early 20s. I do get the odd comment from some friends ‘You’re brave.’ (which I actually find kind of condescending : I didn’t climb Everest or join the army, they’re just shorts), or ‘Shouldn’t you be wearing something longer? You’re not 25 anymore.’ I’ve often thought about this. (And thanks for reminding me that I’m not 25 anymore, I never thought I was nor would I want to be! ) I’ve often gone to stores to try on longer pairs of dress shorts, with pockets and pleats. I look in the mirror and I think…Good god who is that, and where did my legs go? Because that is not me. I did not just step off the ‘yacht’.
First off, I have inherited so many wonderful traits from my father: patience, the ability to make friends with just about anyone, a good sense of humor, his smile, but his fabulous height was not one of them. Yes people, I am vertically challenged. I love to think I am 5’4 on a good day, but, ahem, that’s with heels on. I’m lucky if I make it to 5’2 on the ol yardstick. I have been teased about being small my whole life. Nothing permanently damaging of course, and all in fun. And anyways there were a lot of perks about being the dinkiest one in the classroom – very often you get to be first in line, or in the front row, or taken under the wings of the ‘cool girls’. So I don’t have too many complaints. But back to the ‘shorts’ issue.
I’m obviously no longer in my mid 20s (or late 20s for that matter and we will stop there!). But does that mean I have to dress ‘dowdy’? I’m not saying that anything other than cutoffs are dowdy, but on someone of my stature, it’s highly probable. When I try on the casual, pocketed ‘classy’ white or navy or safari shorts with a cuff at Zara, I look like a soccer mom with the legs of an 11 year old boy. Waist? what waist? I have to pull them up so high now I’m looking like PeeWee Herman from the waist down. In a few seconds of slipping these on, I have lost my bum, whatever hips I had, my waistline, my femininity, and my personality. Gone. These are not for me. These are not comfortable. And in fact, I’m probably going to stop trying, because here’s the thing: I LOVE MY DAISY DUKES!
There! I said it. So I will continue to wear them against all advices. And here’s why. First, they are comfortable. Obviously I don’t wear skin tight jean shorts that ride high and give me a case of camel toe. I like them loose, hanging a bit low on my short waist, and worn-in nicely. Second, I am a bohemian at heart, meaning: the less of a contrived effort to get out the door, the better. Let’s just say I’m no Kate Middleton when I’m hustling to teach a class outside in the morning. We can all pour on the ‘sophistication’ when needed but there’s nothing better than being real and relaxed. I don’t wear makeup on summer days (maybe a bit of lip tint), I love flowy, gauzy blouses or vintage Ts and tanks paired up with my cut offs. Add a leather belt, a few rows of bangles and leather bracelets, and some flat buffalo or tropezienne sandals, or a pair of Swedish Hasbeens, et voilà! Nothing trashy or inappropriate about that. Half the time I have salty, gross, out of control beach hair that I’ll end up pinning up or braiding, so this whole look works well for me.(and no, it’s not the tousled bouncy beach waves you see in ads… by the end of the day it’s more ‘brillo pad’ matted mess). This whole look is extremely low maintenance, not to mention comfortable, and for me, realistic. I rarely spend more than a few minutes in front of the mirror before heading out to teach or shop around town. I often wonder what it would be like to have glossy, shiny, perfect hair with flawless makeup in my cuffed ‘yacht’ shorts and Dior sandals, cruising the Croisette in Cannes for the latest Vuitton bag, but that is just not my lifestyle. More importantly, it’s just not me.
Most of the past few years I have spent beach bumming around the Mayan Riviera in Mexico. Cut-offs are the style of choice there, and hallelujah! because I barely put any thought at all as to what I’m going to throw on most days. My ‘Daisys’ are easy to pull over bikinis when I need to bike home from teaching, they’re durable, I don’t care if they tear or get stained, and they look great with a tan. If there’s a night out involved and I want to wear shorts instead of a dress, I pick my ‘classy’ jean shorts. (that sounds like such an oxymoron) These actually have a hem, and a buckle embellishment on the back, but still, not tight. They look fine with a pair of heels and a loose top. My more ‘beachy’ pairs look great with baggy beach boots and a flowy top and of course lots of wrist adornments and long chains. There are many ways to wear Daisy Dukes, and not have to resemble Daisy Duke! (See photos below;)
Most of all, I don’t really care what people think I ‘should’ wear. Who made the ‘rules’ about what to wear at certain ages? I live in Cannes where older women (and I mean ones in the 70 age range) are quite proud to strut the Croisette in crop tops and bedazzled denims with glossy pink platform sandals. And this is early in the morning on their way to the market to get fresh tomatoes! Am I offended? NO! I am actually in awe of how happy and free they look. They don’t care! They love dressing this way, and who am I to be offended. Anyways, it adds a smile and a bit of color to anyone’s day to witness an outfit like that!
I love my shorts, they suit my personality and they suit my body type. I feel and will always feel young at heart, wearing what I want. So ‘tsk tsk’ away, I am happy just the way I am. I’ll be the one to decide when it’s time to fold ’em up and hand them off. And like the seniors of the Croisette, I’ll probably be wearing them until I’m 70! Kudos to all you taller ladies who can pull off the ‘sophisticated’ cuffed short! Perhaps you have a fear of the Daisy Duke, like I have a fear of ‘the cuff’. Or maybe you don’t wear shorts at all but have another ‘go-to’ staple in your closet. (don’t even get me started on what a ‘maxi-dress’ looks like on me!!I can only dream about wearing one of those.) I guess what I’m trying to say is that we should be able to wear what makes us happy. I’m not suggesting you slip on your jean shorts and Van Halen Tshirt if you work at a legal firm, but what’s stopping you from putting them on at home, if you are comfortable, and hanging out or housecleaning?? We can take tips and get ideas from fashion mags, but in the end, it’s our own interpretation of how we want to wear ‘the latest look’, if we even want that. You look fabulous to me, and at times I am secretly envious and probably will try on another pair of dress shorts because who knows, maybe one day I’ll find the glass slipper, but for now, I’m good. Long live Daisy Dukes!!!
ps/ if you’re trying to get your ‘rear’ in tip top shape for summer shorts season, check out my latest video specifically for the BUM! Instant ‘butt-lift’!
pps/ Want a fantastic guide on how to make your own? Click to this link here (I love this girl!) http://goldfishkiss.com/post/85096707971/diy-cutoffs-tips-diy-jean-shorts