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Five simple ways to make culottes ridiculously flattering

culottes.jpg

Culottes are one of the biggest trends for spring/summer 2015 but we'd be lying if we said we didn't find them hard to style.

If you're anything like the stylist.co.uk team, you haven't worn culottes since you were in the Brownies and had to don the obligatory uniform of brown culottes and a mustard yellow jumper.

Luckily, these short-trouser hybrids have come a long way since then. This season's culottes, as demonstrated on the runways of Gucci and Valentino, are a thing of wonder that can actually be extremely flattering.

They have a great feminist backstory too, having become popular in Victorian England for allowing daring ladies to secretly wear shorts while it looked like they were wearing skirts.

Lili de Alvarez

Tennis player Lili de Alvarez wearing her 'divided skirt' in 1931

The humble culottes, or 'divided skirts', were trousers in disguise that let these women ride horses and play tennis without flashing their knickers.

If you're looking for ways to style up a pair of culottes as part of a brilliantly flattering outfit, head this way to seek inspiration from the celebrities.


1. Match culottes to your top

Co-ordinating culottes to match your top gives a smart, tailored look. Go for matching pastels or bright colours for spring or be bold in matching prints.

Diane Kruger

Diane Kruger

Juianne Hough

Juianne Hough

Emily Wickersham

Emily Wickersham


2. Wear culottes with a shirt

Whether you're going for a daytime or evening look, tucking a shirt into culottes can be transformative as it balances out your sillhouette. A short-sleeved, fitted shirt is ideal for formal ocassions while a baggy shirt gives a more relaxed look.

Gigi Hadid

Gigi Hadid

Parker Posey

Parker Posey

Ellen Pompeo

Ellen Pompeo


3. Pair culottes with trainers

You don't have to wear heels with culottes to make them cool. Try a pair of bright white sneakers, such as Kendall Jenner's Adidas Stan Smiths, for a casual look that works for day or night.

Kendall Jenner

Kendall Jenner


4. Keep it simple

It might sound like obvious advice, but sticking to neutral tones and low key accessories when wearing a bold item like culottes is one of the easiest ways to wear them with style. Go for a colour palette of black, navy, cream and brown to let the shape of the trousers shine.

Victoria Beckham

Victoria Beckham

Karlie Kloss

Karlie Kloss

Lily Collins

Lily Collins

Leelee Sobieski

Leelee Sobieski


5. Distract from culottes with bright accessories

If you're still not convinced by culottes but want to give the trend a try, add a pop of colour to your outfit to distract the eye away from them. Go for a bright pair of shoes, a top in a bold print or a statement jacket.

Rose McGowan

Rose McGowan

Erin O'Connor

Erin O'Connor

Five best culottes

We've scoured the internet to find five of the very best culottes for summer:

zara

Striped culottes, £29.99 from zara.com

whistles

Indigo denim culottes, £140 from harveynichols.com

hm

Cream culottes, £29.99 from hm.com

topshop

Floral print culottes, £32 from topshop.com

warehouse

Tailored crepe culottes, £38 from warehouse.co.uk

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