Stars & Stripes

Frocks & Frou Frou Frocks & Frou Frou Frocks & Frou Frou Frocks & Frou FrouTop: Princess Highway

Blazer: Zara (no longer available similar here)

Jeans: Levi’s 512 Skinny

Scarf: H&M (no longer available – similar here)

Shoes: Naturaliser

I was reading an interesting article in the paper a few days ago about how Levi’s was trying to evolve to keep pace with a changing market that put a lot of value in comfort. The “Yoga Pants Effect” is a bit of a pat way to draw a parallel between the fall of profits at Levi’s with the rise and rise of Lululemon (no link, because of their history of disrespecting plus-size consumers), but it certainly holds water for me. I like to be comfortable, and jeans (let’s be honest) aren’t comfortable.

I’ve been wearing my Rockstar jeans since coming back from the US the last time, but as with a lot of Old Navy‘s product the quality reflects the price, and they’re becoming a bit saggy and a bit baggy and rubbing thin between the ol’ thighs.

Anyhoo, the gist of the article is that Levi’s has been working on a new kind of denim to appeal to the “athleisure” market: comfortable, forgiving stretch denim that accommodates a variety of body types, but has a high recovery rate so that the stretch doesn’t result in saggy knees and rumps. So, jeans that feel like leggings, but look – you know – like jeans (And no, I don’t mean these).

Frocks and Frou FrouSo have they succeeded? I’d have to say “yes”! I bought these jeans – they’re the 512 Skinny style – in the post-Christmas sales, and since then I’ve retired every other pair of jeans in my wardrobe.

They’re soft as soft and stretchy, but don’t feel at all syntheticky or unpleasant. They fit beautifully and don’t stretch out at all – I’m not constantly hoiking them up, but they definitely don’t cut in or muffin-top me. They’re comfortable to sit in for long stretches (I’ve flown to and from Perth in them a couple of times) and even though there’s supposedly a “tummy shaping panel” I don’t feel constricted or squeezed at all.

Frocks and Frou FrouI teamed it with a stripey top and blazer. I think I’ve decided that the secret to blazers is not to necessarily try and find one that does up, and rather to look for one that fits snugly around the shoulders. In the past I’ve always bought blazers that fastened around my bust, which invariably meant that they were boxy and shapeless around the rest of my body.

Also, the rare appearance of a scarf! I’ve never really been able to grasp the art of scarf-wearing, despite being inspired every time I see my scarf-master friend, Adele. I think probably my boobs are too big and my neck too short, but this one seems to work fine so maybe it’s all in my head!

24 thoughts on “Stars & Stripes

  1. Gorgeous outfit! It’s casual, yet polished. Those jeans sound amazing, I’m definitely going to check them out, I’m in need of a new pair of skinny jeans. And AMEN to not linking Lululemon. Respect <3

  2. Ahhhhhh! You’ve found your funeral jeans by the looks of it.

    They are perfection on you, and they’re the kind of jeans that make you say “when I die, bury me in these babies”.

    Mine are a pair of ankle crop skinnies I picked up for $35 on sale at Portmans a few seasons ago … I will *cry* when they bite the dust.

  3. I adore this outfit on you. Perfect blend of sleek and casual. I also avoid scarves but you’ve sold me here to keep trying! You’re looking really well, love the blog

  4. Love this scarf on you – it probably works now that you have short hair and appears less “bulky” around your neck/face. I too, think I look better when my hair is shorter – I can get away will all kinds of accessories that seemed too much with longer hair as well – scarves, earrings, chunkier necklaces etc.

  5. Ohhhhh thanks Lilly I just rushed to google to check out these jeans and found them on sale at myer in my size for $38 🙂
    They sound just like the “jeggins” I bought years ago in Vegas (holiday shopping always makes me buy & try things I’d never normally touch) which quickly became my perfect jeans on my previously un-jean able figure! Fingers crossed these Levi can fit the hole since they no longer fit after some weight loss.
    On lulelemon, just checking you know they are us/Canadian sizes ?? ……I poo pooed them for ages too, but one day I decided to try a pair of pants in the size 12 & too my shock they actually fitted my large thighed sized 18-20 body – I’ve had them now for about two years and they have been worth the pricey tag.

    1. Nice find! I’ve been thinking I should get another pair in the lighter denim, so I should suss out my local Myer too – thanks for the heads-up!
      I’m a bit squicky about Lululemon, I’m afraid. The founder sounds like a bit of a dick: he’s on record saying he decided on “Lululemon” as the name, because he thought it would be funny to hear the Japanese say it, plus he’s been upfront about preferring to use child labor in third world countries .

  6. Those jeans look fabulous. I am on the eternal hunt for jeans that fit well and don’t sag/bag or have me hoisting them up every 2 minutes. I followed the link you had to the Levi’s and unfortunately the size chart wasn’t working. Just wondering if you bought your normal size or whether you sized up/down? Any tips would be appreciated.

  7. I agree with fitting blazers to shoulders rather than fitting for the chest. Whenever I try to fit my chest I end up looking like the Hulk.

    I am also interested in knowing how true to size the jeans are.

      1. Thanks for that. I’ve ordered myself a pair from the States. Weirdly, the Australisn site won’t shop to New Zealand even though it tried to redirect me there.

  8. You look great in a scarf! I can’t wear them as my neck is ridiculously short– I can’t wear long earrings, either. 🙁

    1. Yeah, I don’t tend to wear dangly earrings often either – I like big stud earrings though. The good news is that you can probably pull off deep-v necklines better than someone with a long neck!

  9. I LOVE these jeans!! I’m in the U.S. so I didn’t see the exact same style numbers, but I’m definitely going to do some research. Maybe by this fall I’ll have jeans that are actually comfy! 🙂

    Also I’m going to echo the commenter (hi HellB!) who said the shorter hair is probably helping yr scarf confidence. I’ve always found that scarves are best when I have shorter hair or my longer hair pulled up – that way, I’m not just face/scarf/boobs, and it looks less bulky. But I’m a big fan of scarves no matter what, & striped shirt + star scarf is one of my favorite combos!

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