Home > Fashion Quandary: How To Wear Culottes

Fashion Quandary: How To Wear Culottes

Ahhhh…culottes. One of the more difficult fashion trends to wear since flatforms. For the past couple of years, I’ve seen fashionistas out and about looking amazing in these flowy, cut-off pants. On the other hand, I’ve also seen some culotte atrocities.

What makes these fashion darlings so hard to wear? If not styled properly, they can take you from “fashion editor” to tree stump in five seconds flat. Due to their volume and midi-length, some style finagling is very much needed with this cool trend.

Fashion Quandary: How To Wear Culottes | www.styledomination.com

Croptop: Aritzia | Culottes: Joseph Ribkoff | Sandals:  Zara (similar here and here) | Midi Rings: Forever 21 | Lips: Nyx Angel Food Cake

Fashion Quandary: How To Wear Culottes | www.styledomination.com
Fashion Quandary: How To Wear Culottes | www.styledomination.com

I was lucky enough to walk in Shepherd’s “Best Of the Week” Fashion Show, and one of the looks I modelled was a pair of Joseph Ribkoff culottes. When I saw them hanging on my rolling rack, I was stricken with fear. “Oh God. I’m going to look stumpy.”, “Ooooh – my husband is going to ask me where the flood is…”, and “I’m not sure I can pull these off…at all.”

Like any good model, I put them on anyways because you do what the client wants and boy, I’m glad I did. Not only did they look great, they fit like a dream! High-waisted, slimmer-fitting, zipper in the front leading to a better fit, I fell in love instantly and like that, they were mine.

Now, I know this style is daunting, so here are some tips to pull them off in style:

1.You can get away with tons of different shoe styles with culottes.

With their flowy silhouette, culottes look great with pumps, flats, sneaks and strappy sandals. So far,  I’ve worn mine with Stan Smiths and a denim shirt for a super casual look, along with strappy sandals to elevate the style.

Fashion Quandary: How To Wear Culottes | www.styledomination.com
I love everything that’s happening in this pic. Look at those shoes! (Source: www.northofmanhattan.com)

2. Pleated culottes – the “non-skirt”

Still not convinced? Give a pair of pleated culottes in a light fabric such as crepe de chine. Culottes made with this fabric will drape more like a skirt, allowing for maximum flowy femininity. You’ll have the look of a beautiful midi-skirt, but tada! They’re pants!

Fashion Quandary: How To Wear Culottes | www.styledomination.com
Source: Glamour, Getty Images

3. Pair them with a matching crop top – seriously.

Matching your boldly-printed culottes with a matching crop top is seriously on point. It looks fresh and of the moment, and is remarkably easy to wear. It also elongates your body, therefore eliminating the dreaded stumpy look.

Fashion Quandary: How To Wear Culottes | www.styledomination.com
Crazy…AWESOME! (Source: www.thefashionfoot.com)
Fashion Quandary: How To Wear Culottes | www.styledomination.com
Kenny J knows what’s up.

3. Just go monotone…

…like I did. I love monotone looks. They are really fashion forward and I love any excuse to add bold accessories to zhuzh up the outfit like fun hats, great shoes and stand-out jewelry.

Mira Duma
Editor extraordinaire, Mira Duma

4. Pair them with a blazer for work.

Keep your culottes professional by opting for those made with light wool fabrics or heavy cottons, pairing with a great white blouse and adding a blazer.

Fashion Quandary: How To Wear Culottes | www.styledomination.com
That’s right, ladies. Put your arms IN THE SLEEVES.  LOL! (Source: www.lookbook.nu)
Secretary blouse

5. Sportify them.

Pair your culottes with some cool trainers like those by Common Projects or Adidas and a fresh tee and voilà! Ultra cool.

Chucks and Comme des Garcons
Fashion Quandary: How To Wear Culottes | www.styledomination.com
“Look at me! Stylish and my feet don’t hurt!”
Fashion Quandary: How To Wear Culottes | www.styledomination.com
Adidas Gazelles never looked cooler

Have you embraced the culotte trend? If so, how do you rock your culottes? Let me know in the comments!

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Dominique Baker
Dominique Baker

Dominique is a Canadian-based fashion and beauty influencer with a strong voice in Ottawa’s black community. Since launching her blog Style Domination in 2015, she has amassed a global fanbase. Dominique shares her life through beautiful imagery and compelling story-telling that speaks to her fans on a personal level. She’s been featured in The Guardian, Flare, The Kit and Cityline. She also hosts events for Dress for Success, the Gem Conference, and has been named a United Way Person 2 Know for the past three years.

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Leave a comment

  1. April 26, 2016 / 5:48 pm

    These outfits are stunning and they women wearing them look so confident too! This is something I would struggle to wear so thankyou for your tips!!

  2. April 26, 2016 / 7:21 pm

    this is amazing. was just thinking of buying a pair today but fer stopped me!

    • April 26, 2016 / 10:04 pm

      Lol! Awww! Oh no! I believe there is a great pair out there for everyone. xo

  3. April 26, 2016 / 9:30 pm

    I have a pair of culottes and the only way I can rock them is with heels and a shorter cut top, otherwise, I like look like a frumpy child playing dress up! I really like the look of the pleated version but I’m worried the pleating would be overwhelming on my frame. I’d have to try that style on to see!

  4. April 27, 2016 / 11:27 am

    Reblogged this on and commented:
    Now i know how to wear culottes right , pls follow styledomination.wordpress.com

  5. April 27, 2016 / 10:27 pm

    okay, you’ve convinced me. I need to try culottes. Officially and completely. I love te “non-skirt” aspect to them, especially for work. I love love love wearing skirts to work but when you’re playing with small children and crawling around on the floor, even a good maxi skirt can end in disaster. And nobody wants that particular disaster around young impressionable children! I’m definitely going to keep my eye out for a pair now. Thanks for sharing the tips!


    • April 28, 2016 / 6:46 pm

      Hahahaha! Yeah! They are on trend and comfy! Check out Zara. They always have cute ones!

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