fashion

After months of struggling to find non-skinny jeans for short girls, I found the holy grail.

NO.

I've been stuck in a spiral of terrible denim options for months now. Skinny jeans are out, and as a very short woman with hips but no bum, I feel personally victimised by this loose-fitting jean trend.

It's led me to such hellish places as this:

And also this:

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And finally, regrettably, this:

But my humiliating failures are not the point of this story. Also, I've already written that story, here

This is a story of triumph. Of not giving up in the face of adversity. Of continuing to try on jeans until your fingers bleed and your hips bruise.*

*Note: Neither of these things even nearly happened.

It all started when I found a pair of jeans I actually loved - the Casey Slim Fit from Thrills. They were my only success after trying on countless pairs of non-skinny jeans, and I yelled at anyone who would listen that they made me look like a mum having a relaxed holiday at her beach house in The Hamptons. 

Want some lemonade made from fresh lemons, kids?  

Thrills got in touch to say they actually have other styles of jeans and would I like to try them, and... yes. 

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Urgently.  

For the first time in my life, I felt... how do I put this. Like an influencer. With packages. And deliveries. And brands a brand sending me things to try just to see what I thought.

They sent me three pairs and I need you all to stop what you're doing immediately. Because this is important. 

These jeans were game-changing. 

Belle Stretch Jean - Time Worn Blue

I need to reinforce that last time I checked, I was not quite five foot. 

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So WHY THEN do I look SEVEN FEET TALL IN THESE JEANS?

WHAT. 

Witchcraft, that's how. 

In my non-expert opinion, I think it's because they're high but sit at the perfect point to not cut off my torso. The wide legs also somehow create length which is a goddamn revelation. 

I would never, ever have picked up these jeans to try on. I would've thought they were too loose and would only make me look shorter. And that's why I'm not a stylist. 

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Jude Jeans - Trucker Blue

After my one from one strike rate, I was ready for disappointment. Sometimes jeans are cruel and that's okay.

But when I tried on a stove-pipe style (again, never would've picked them up on my own) I was shocked. 

THEY MAKE MY LEGS LOOK LIKE FUNDAMENTALLY DIFFERENT SHAPED LEGS. AND I APPRECIATE IT.

HOW. 

Again with the illusion of height. 

The other thing I love about this style (and the style above) is that they're genuinely comfortable. For over a decade I've always had to brace myself for wearing jeans because they make my legs itchy. Is it because I never moisturise them? Probably. But non-skinny jeans don't irritate them and don't leave deep indents on my skin and leave me wishing all day that I was home in my trackies. 

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Paige Jeans - Black Rinse

I'M NOT USED TO MAINTAINING THIS LEVEL OF POSITIVITY. It feels unnatural. 

But after trying these on, I went to a friend's place (this was pre-Sydney lockdown), and got so many goddamn compliments on how flattering my jeans were. 

This is not a common occurrence for me, given I usually look like a foot. 

The Paige jeans are high-waisted with a straight leg which is exactly what I'd been looking for. Not too baggy, but not too tight, and somehow cut off at the perfect length to make the bold statement: yeah, my jeans actually fit, so wot?

These styles are some of the only jeans I've worn that don't require me to roll them up to be a flattering length. And it makes me look a lot less... messy?

So, Thrills - a Byron Bay-based label with a focus on sustainability - are game-changing for short people. 

But plot twist: enter a second jeans brand. 

Since I wrote about my jeans struggle, dozens of women had reached out with one word: ABrand. 

Like a psychic, ABrand then got in touch with me to ask if I was aware of their petite range and no. I most certainly was not. So they sent me one of their most popular styles to try in two different colours. And... goodness. 

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A 94 High Slim Petite Jeans

Georgia

Okay so now I'm a mum on holidays in The Hamptons with multiple pairs of 'relaxing by the sea' jeans. AND I DIDN'T EVEN HAVE TO ROLL THESE ONES UP.

They're a slim fit so not too much fabric anywhere, and they don't mind even a little bit that I have no bum to showcase.

How... kind. 

Vintage 90210

They also bloody work in black, meaning I have SO MANY DAMN JEANS CHOICES NOW. 

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This style is currently 20 per cent off on The Iconic so I would never tell you what to do but... run? Quickly? That's an $80 pair of jeans and wtf?

Watch out because when we come out of lockdown I'll have a different pair of jeans for each weekday and no one will know what hit them. 

I think the moral of this story is: pick up jeans you wouldn't ordinarily try. You might be surprised about what works in the brave new fashion world of 2021. 

And be prepared to have some fails. There's nothing wrong with you - it's the fault of the jeans. 

It's ALWAYS the fault of the jeans.   

For more of Clare's farshion journey, you can follow her on Instagram, where she documents it all - including her changeroom horror stories, here

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MMSurvey