THE Definitive Guide to Leggings

3.10.2015

IMG_5473 By Audrey Danser

5 ways to wear ’em

For many students, throwing on a pair of leggings is the warmest and most comfortable solution to the bitter Kansas wind this time of year. However, instead of using leggings as an excuse for dressing down, here are five simple ways that leggings can be worn to dress comfortably while also achieving a polished look. Pulling together a more fashion-oriented outfit does not have to take much effort.

1. Save the athletic wear for the gym.

Leggings that look like athletic wear (you know, the black ones with bright pink V’s at the calf) should be saved for working out. I understand that it is convenient and comfortable to throw on the ‘athletic’ outfit for those early morning classes and just stay dressed that way for the rest of the day until you do actually make it to the gym, but that’s no justification. The rec center has locker rooms for outfit changes.

2. Tunics cover more than a T-shirt.

Tunics are too short to wear with tights, yet they look odd when paired with jeans. However, with skin-hugging leggings, the proportion is perfect: not too revealing and not too conservative. Now throw on a thick knit scarf and riding boots and you’re ready to face the winter wind. Tunics also, ahem… cover your booty (see October’s article ‘Butt Why: the Return of the Backside’).

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3. Wear them like tights.

The thought of wearing a dress or skirt in the winter can be chilling. However, if you pair a dress or skirt with more densely knit leggings, the weather and coverage is no problem. Although traditionally black, just like tights, leggings come in all different patterns and colors. When paired with a simple, neutral outfit like a solid black or grey dress, colorful leg wear can be a fun detail.

4. Wear it with a blazer.

What’s more striking than juxtaposition? Full-length black leggings can actually be quite sleek if paired with the right combination. Try pairing your outfit with black booties, a fit-and-flair-blouse, statement necklace and top-knot for a polished look. Alternatively, continue with the theme of juxtaposition and replace the blouse for your favorite band’s vintage T-shirt.

5. Think Audrey Hepburn.

Go for simple, yet elegant. Try pairing your 3/4 length black leggings with a black and white striped long sleeve T-shirt and flats. Top off your look with bold red lips for a pop of color. Now, how is that any more difficult to throw on in the mornings than what you’re already wearing?

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 Photos by Hannah Mougel

Modeling by Bailey Degnan

Edited by Katie Gilbaugh and Erika Reals

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