Shortcuts to Florida's essential, often painful summer look
It's that time of year again -- when we fall back on the most clichéd story intro we've ever heard because we are overcome by oppressive summer heat and it's messing with our brains and stifling our creativity.
Shorts season. It's been here for a while, and it's not going away until maybe the winter holidays (but even then who knows).
Do we care? Yes. Utter the word "shorts" around my neck of the newsroom and you'll hear groans and cries of "WHY?" and "IT'S NOT FAIR."
Do we dare? Um, what choice do we have in the State of Eternal Sunshine? I wear as many light, casual sundresses as possible in the summer, but I will never have enough to live that dream fulltime.
We're not short on anxiety about the situation (#thickthighs, like Mindy taught me!), so let's revisit some old tricks and come up with some new ones to get through this together.
Length: The biggest factor for me is length. I don't want a bermuda (the 3/4-length sausage casing, sorry, sleeve for your thighs) because I don't think it's flattering. And I don't want what a JV cheerleading coach once called "booty ringers."
Whether it's jorts, patterned shorts or fluid skorts, the inseam matters. The inseam, remember, is the area on your pants that goes from the centermost private region to the bottom of the leg (totally cribbing from Deal Diva Stephanie's how-to jorts post last year). She suggested adult women with jobs, job ambitions and "slowing metabolisms" wear an inseam that is 3.5-5 inches long.
But I want a casual high-waisted short! It's so nice to think about yourself as a carefree student of poetry with daisies in your hair and indie music in your head, but it's also not likely sustainable thinking for the place you're in now. The high-waisted shorts have fatty fad all over them, and a mid-rise waist that falls below the belly button will do many more wonders for you, Stephanie says.
Cuffs: For some reason, cuffed shorts just seem more flattering. I wonder if they have the same effect of a boot-cut leg on jeans -- instead of drawing attention to a tight thigh, they draw the eye out. I'm not sure, I just wonder. One friend said the cuffs "just help them look like they're not pants that ended before they were supposed to."
Last week I bought two pairs at Banana in the Hampton style with 40 percent off. I would never pay $50 for shorts. Yes, never. Deep down, these stores know our reality and offer frequent specials of 40 and 50 percent off to pull us back in.
Last summer I went on a spending binge at LOFT and bought shorts in fun colors like mint and purple. I should have purchased more because they were only $12 and $20 and very cute, which brings me to the next tidbit of advice ...
Color! Skip khaki and go for bright colors and fun patterns. I paired purple shorts with a baby blue Rays T-shirt to a game recently, the point being that they are not as restrictive as you think. Anything can happen! Try to make this fun!
Related news: It's Jorts Week over at Buzzfeed, because of course it is, and they had a pretty great DIY jorts party that gave me a good laugh this morning. Pipe cleaners and colored cotton balls. Oh, what a world.
Throw some more tips at me. We need all the help we can get.