Vintage style: 50s casual via modern leggings

Things I love: 1) being comfortable and 2) not looking like a sack of potatoes while being comfortable. Some vintage styles don’t lend themselves to absolute comfort with their structure, fitted waists and general lack of elastane (if you’re doing ‘proper’ vintage, that is).
When I’m not prancing around taking (quite frankly ridiculous) photos for this blog, my favourite loungewear of choice is to pull on a pair of leggings and a jumper/long top. Which got me thinking, is it possible to wear something as modern as a stretchy pair of leggings and look a bit retro (for want of a better phrase)? On their own, they can be the nemesis of a curvier figure – and while I’m petite, I do have a hip measurement that’s almost 10″ bigger than my waist… i.e. I have a sizeable rear end.
I think it’s possible, but see if you agree with me…


What I think is key to this look:
  1. Make sure your leggings are both thick (and not the cheap, practically tights (pantyhose) kind) and high-waisted
  2. This is always going to look better with darker colours, as a) darker colours are more flattering which is key when something’s skin-tight and b) I’m not convinced lighter colours would pass as trousers (unless you’re 5 and pink’s your thing)
  3. Turn up the inside of each leg to make a slightly shorter, cut off length and voila – suddenly they look like capris!
  4. Leggings are equally stretchy all over, so you could probably use some extra waist definition; if you want to stay comfy, take a leaf out of my book and go for an elasticated belt
  5. Choose a pretty top to tuck in, preferably one more of the 50s variety (more details on my cardigan below)
  6. Slip on some ballet pumps
  7. Put hair in a casual 50s do – I’ve gone for a ponytail, but tucking it up under a headscarf would also look fetching here
  8. Lipstick. Of course. My picks for a casual look are orange-red, bright red or coral.

Outfit details…

Cardigan: Hell Bunny (from Tiger Milly)
Leggings: Topshop
Belt: Miss Selfridge (old)
Shoes: Clarks (last season’s, but still all over eBay)
Lipstick: Ruby & Millie (discontinued)



  1. May 1, 2014 / 2:53 pm

    Genius! You look fabulous. I think this could work for me too, I'd have to track down some nice high waist thick leggings, they used to call them 'ski pants' didn't they? hmm…I'll keep you posted!! Though I might be on a self-imposed shopping ban for the rest of the year because I just calculated how much I spent in April… P x

    • May 1, 2014 / 3:13 pm

      Not sure, I always imagine ski pants as being those ones with the little foot straps at the bottom! Whatever happened to those… Never count up spend, it only leads to tears/shame! Ignorance is bliss… and hey, there's worse things in the world than spending too much on clothes, right? Right?? x

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