Flared Pants, Hems, and Commutes

proper hem lengthsWhat is the proper hem length for heels — and how do you commute in shoes of different heights?  Reader Y wonders about flared pants, but I think she brings up a great point about hems and women who commute in shoes other than their office heels.

I’m a 25 year old working in Boston, usually in nice business casual offices. I don’t need to wear a suit, but I do need to look good. I have a number of flared (not too heavily) in my wardrobe and I don’t know if I can wear them to the office. Do you have any tips on length? What shoes can/should I wear (especially since I put on other shoes for the commute from and two work that are often flat)? Will they drown my height? If they can’t be worn…can I get them hemmed or something? It feels like such a waste to have them sitting there.

the proper hem length for flared pantsWhen I first saw this I honestly thought, oh come on, of course you can wear flared pants! But then I started wondering if perhaps this is just a peculiarity to my age (35), since I grew up seeing lots of flared styles (and still think the bootcut is one of the most flattering pant shapes of all time). By contrast, skinny trousers and capris often look inappropriate to me — too 1950s, too Audrey Hepburn gamine to be taken seriously for the office. But then I thought of some of the extreme flared styles we’re seeing right now and thought, ok, fair question — I dislike those because they’re too 70s. My advice is that if anything is too reminiscent of any particular era other than “right now,” be careful about wearing it to the office. For example, the French Connection trousers (named “Galaxy Groove”) seem a bit too, well, galactic and groovy for the office. (2018 Update: here are some similar options.)

I think the really interesting question in Y’s email, though, is about hem length, particularly once you factor in commuting shoes. I was just admiring someone’s outfit yesterday, but for the fact that her pants were 3 inches too short for her shoes. Sigh. As we head into spring, lots of people will be commuting in flats — some (clutch your pearls, ladies) even may commute in flip-flops. This definitely poses problems with pants, because (for most pants) your pants should be long enough so only about an inch of heel is left showing, and almost the entire front part (“vamp”) of the shoe/your foot is covered, leaving just the toe part sticking out.  I’ve just whipped together what hopefully will be a handy visual guide:

The Corporette Guide to Hems -- pants too short, pants too long, and pants juuuust right.

(It’s amazing how often I see poorly styled pants and shoes on store and brand websites — in general I think J.Crew gets it right the most often.)  I think that if the hem length is wrong, it’s very easy to make even an expensive pair of pants look really cheap.  So how do you solve the commuting problem?  I’ve never tried them, but I’ve heard of Zakkerz (which help you “hem” your pants on the go) — my own trick (and one other people swear by!) is to commute in wedges. Another trick I used to use was to keep a pair of kitten heels at the office — the low, low heels were comfortable all day and frequently let me “keep” the same hem I wore with flip-flops.  (Oh, and if you like the guide above, please consider Pinning it on Pinterest!)

Readers, what are your thoughts on hems and commuting shoes?  How do you deal with commuting in different shoes than you wear all day? Also, what are your thoughts on flared pants at the office?


  1. ADORE Zakkerz. In a pinch, I’ll even use binder clips. Regular paper clips seem to snag the fabric, but binder clips will work. It’s a matter of taste, but I prefer pants hemmed on the long side and would very quickly ruin them if I tried commuting with them down and in flats.

    • Are Zakkers worth the $30 price tag?

      • I think so. It’s slightly ridiculous to pay that much for fabric and magnets, but they last forever and the magnets are strong enough to hold up even thick wool pants with no damage. I get so much use out of them that I consider them worth it on a per use basis.

        • Gail the Goldfish :

          Could I make something similar for less than $30? I’m not particularly crafty, but I could probably manage to sew some magnets in a strip of fabric. Is there something about the brand in particular that makes them good, or is it just the concept?

          • I just tuck the ends of my pants under so they’re cuffed on the inside. Then I saftey pin them, careful not to make any dimples in the fabric or have any metal showing on the outside.

    • I love these, but do NOT want to show the manageing partner my tush.

    • Gooseberry :

      WOW! Thank you so much. The number of different things I do to solve this problem is extreme (I’ve tried safety pins, tucking, rolling and re-rolling and rolling again, etc) and this is wonderful. Purchasing now.

      • I bought them a couple of weeks ago based on the recommendations on this site. They’re awesome.

        • Amelia Bedelia :

          did you buy the long or original?

          • I bought the originals. I wanted just black, but the closest thing they had were the daisies so that’s what I got. Since I’m only wearing them for the commute, it doesn’t really bother me.

    • Related TJ: how do people deal with length of jeans? (I’m sorry, I know this question is pathetic!) I like to wear dark wash jeans with heels for evening, but also love the same jeans for weekend days with flats. Obviously, if the length of the jean is fine for heels, I’m dragging my pants on the floor with flats. Buy the same pair twice and hem for different shoe options?

      • Angie at youlookfab has done some great posts on the perfect pant lengths. And, yep, I think her suggestion has been to purchase double the same pair of jeans and have them hemmed for the different heel heights. If your jeans are skinnies, however, you can just scrunch your jeans at the ankle when wearing flats.

      • I’m really bad about hemming jeans. I just fold and safety-pin for flats.

      • Skinny jeans can be worn at about the same length for flats and heels, or if you prefer them longer in heels, then you can roll them with flats.

      • I wear flare-ish jeans (Gap’s Long and Lean). They actually have some sort of amazing hem that looks good with heels or flats.

  2. I tuck under the cuffs of my pants in the back and secure with a safety pin (on the inside – so barely any pin shows from the outside) to make a temporary hem – although wedges are comfier, all those steps on concrete are rigid enough without adding extra pressure to my toes! I change shoes and un-pin immediately after unpacking in my office, so there’s no chance anyone could see me in my comfy loafers and think that I thought they were appropriate office-wear.

    As far as “flared” pants – I think pants that get lots roomier below the knee, like mermaid wedding dresses, are a little dramatic for the office (as opposed to wide leg styles). The wider the hem, the pointier a toe I wear – if your shoes get “lost” under your pants, the pants will look too long even if they are hemmed correctly.

    • to clarify – I think the pants in the “pants too long” of Kat’s picture are “too” flared; the ones pictured as examples of flares with the correct shoes look totally fine to me.

  3. Um…this has nothing to do with hems, but I’ve found my new favorite tumblr.


    • Hahaha, the Palin one is my fav

    • Hilarious.

    • Merabella :

      I hope this doesn’t make me sound ignorant – but who is that lady wearing the lilac purple hammer pants suit in the background of the Condi pic? That thing is baller.

      PS – her pants are hemmed wrong.

      • She looks like Bill Clinton dressed in drag!

      • Makeup Junkie :

        Who is the woman in the 3am picture?

      • sweetknee :

        I think that’s Karen somethin- or-other. . .she was a spokesperson during the “W” administration. She usually looked LOTS better than that.

        • Yep. Karen Hughes. She was an undersecretary in the State Dept and one of Bush’s closest advisors. Fun fact you would not guess from that pant suit picture: she was born in Paris, France.

        • Karen Hughes. She’s actually kind of a baller herself, despite this unfortunate outfit. She came up with “Compassionate Conservative.” It may be a non-sequitur in some people’s books, but it was brilliant campaign strategy.

    • This just made my life. Thank you!

    • Anon-who-loves-cookies :

      Love! Thanks for the smile.

    • Totes McGotes :

      TCFKAG, I think Kat should make you a certificate with a gold star for your work this week.

      • I am consistently surprised that I seem to be alone in wishing the TCFKAG wouldn’t post like 1000 times a day. To each her own, and I respect that, and it’s not personal (I would feel the same if anyone hijacked the whole page, other than dear Kat, of course) but it honestly has dropped my reading of the site in half. TCFKAG, I am hoping for you (truly), but for me, too, that you get a job soon. (I think you said you are looking for work, and lord knows you don’t seem to work during the day.)

        • Wow, that was totally and completely uncalled for.


        • Whoa.

        • this comment is out of line. seriously, how hard is it to just ignore and move on with your life.

          To TCFKAG: keep on keepin’ on.

        • That’s very rude. TCFKAG always contributes to the discussion, brings awesome links, is willing to vicariously shop for those of us who hate it, and brings a smile to my face and I believe to the face of many of the women who post here daily.

          Perhaps recall your grandmother’s saying “if you can’t say anything nice don’t say anything at all.” If you don’t like TCFKAG’s posts, skip them!

          • not alone :

            its getting harder and harder to skip them.

          • Defenders, you are right. All of you. Moment of exhaustion and frustration. TCFKAG is not my cup of tea and very much detracts from this awesome forum (for me). But, it’s not her responsibility to be my cup of tea, and I should not have posted about that. And if I can’t skip them, I don’t have to come. I know that, but lost track of it for a second and vented. Consider me appropriately hushed.

          • Agree and she has the best d*mn googling skills out there and is always willing to help a ‘rette.

          • For really? We do not want to silence your voice, but we (I think) want this forum to be an inclusive place for all. Think about how your comment must make TCFKAG feel? I can’t speak for her and she seems to be an incredibly cheerful person who is able to let criticism like this roll right off her, but for me I would be crushed.

            I am childless by choice and find the baby/child/pregnancy and working related threads that occur on almost a daily basis to be interminable. So I don’t read them.

            I understand you were venting and all, but there’s no need to be so negative. Maybe Kat can take down this whole thread.

        • I feel the opposite. I like seeing consistent posts by the same person/people. It makes me feel like there’s more of a community here.
          And maybe I’m just a fast reader, but posts on Corporette don’t take *that* long to get through. (ie I don’t think others are wasting as much time as you might think)

          • This. And Really’s? comment makes me hesistant to post anything for fear it(I) will be judged. TCFKAG, I think you are awesome.

        • Dude, no. We don’t do that here.

        • Well, I guess I’ll take good wishes in my job hunt however I can get them.

          And as for the work thing, I’m on a long term doc review project, which the only way I can remain productive is by allowing myself a “reward” every x number of documents, which is usually scrolling through what’s happening on here. But perhaps I should be checking out what’s going on somewhere else instead.

          And I may not be your cup of tea. But at least I’m rarely if ever mean.

          • You are right. I am sorry. Lapse of good judgement.

          • This is a very graceful response to a personal attack. Bravo.

          • TCFKAG I love your comments! You seem wonderful!

          • Anonymous NYer :

            don’t let her stop you from commenting! Yesterdays thread about ‘the list’ made my day, and you always bring a little bit a humor to the table, which is much appreciated.

            I am glad she apologized though. One of those learnable think-before-you-type moments I suppose.

          • Makeup Junkie :

            You’re lucky you’ve got internet access! At my firm, the doc reviewers don’t. I think they must all have neck cramps for leaning over to view their iPhones/Blackberries all day to surf.

          • [furiously making my “TEAM TCFKAG” spaghetti top at zazzle.com]

          • TCFKAG, I love your posts! They’re always succinct, to the point, and relevant. Don’t stop!

          • Good response. I’m glad they let you have access to the web. Don’t lose your mind. Best of luck!

        • SF Bay Associate :

          Totally inappropriate. We don’t have Mean Girls here. I post a lot, too. TCKFAG is a virtual friend who keeps us company all day. If you don’t want to read something, whether it’s a post from a particular person you don’t want to be your virtual friend, or about a particular topic that doesn’t interest or offends you, then don’t.

          • boat shoes :

            Not gonna get into the TCFKAG issue but corporette absolutely has mean girls. People b*tch about people all the time. Lately its like every thread is “rant” here are people I don’t like. The commentator wasn’t saying she hates TCF, she was just talking about volume.

        • It’d be one thing if you merely objected to the content of her posts but you just don’t like the quantity, which is not.for.you.to.control.

          Also, what’s with the judgy tone on her work ethic? You don’t know how productive she might or might not be.

        • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r8Mz4KjrAIU

        • Oh.so.tired :

          I love TCFKAG’s posts! TCFKAG, you seem like an amazing person and while many of your posts are humorous, some are very deep and insightful (one in particular when I was facing a major personal dilemma and I really appreciated your thoughtful input).

        • Anon-na-na :

          Posters like this is why I do not post in response to a lot of things. Snaps to TCFKAG for keeping it interesting and practically reading my mind in response to a lot of things. To really?: I mean how do we REALLY know that this whole site is not the same person posting over and over again? In the words of Joy Behar SO WHAT? WHO CARES?

        • Really? — adding late to the party, but I think it takes big person to admit you were wrong. I thought you were harsh, but I really appreciate that you backed off. Props to you.

        • anonymous :

          TCFKAG — I think you are fantastic and always appreciate your contributions. I hope that you don’t let someone with a lot of hate bring you down or make you change. Perhaps she is dealing with a rough time and needed to take it out on someone…I’m sorry that it was on you.

      • ok, everyone else has already said what I feel too – but on a completely unrelated note, what does TCFKAG stand for?! Am I just completely ignorant?

        • Anonymous NYer :

          She explained once that it means The Commenter Formerly Known As Guest…

          • Ok, gotcha. That makes the acronym a lot easier to remember. In my head she’s always .

          • Senior Attorney :

            ZOMG now that I know what TCFKAG stands for, I love her more than ever!

          • As long as someone is participating in, rather than dominating the conversation – who cares? I dont tend to notice who posts what as much as the general flow. I did think of an awesome way to troll you guys, though – by just posting a bunch of random comments all day, stealing her TCFKAG moniker all the while. But I can’t being myself to actually do that to a commenter I like. ;)

          • This, if you make me the next Ellen, I’ll lol. And I guess change monikers. haha.

          • Pinky-swear not to. Now no more looking at this awful little thread. Moving on! ;)

      • I’m with Totes! Keep it up!!! (and this is serious, I never use multiple exclamation points)

    • My work blocks all the images! I detest my overactive work filter (though appreciate the time saver…)

    • hahaha! That was funny – thank you for sharing.

    • That is awesome. Thanks TCFKAG.

    • Dying. These are greatness.

    • Senior Attorney :

      Oh, and to address the merits:

      LOVE! My favorite is the Obama one!

  4. PharmaGirl :

    Oh no! My pants/shoes combination is falling into the too short category. I thought they were fine when I left the house but caught a look in the work bathroom mirror and they’re not looking right.

    • Oooh, I hate that and then you feel awkward all day!

      I will say though that I actually like some of the hem lines in Kat’s “too short” category. I wear cute shoes darn it, I want to show them off! Plus, I’m not going to limit my pants/shoes combinations because of .5-1 inch. Pah.

      • I feel the same. I figure that I have 65ish pairs of worky shoes and appx. 6 pairs of work pants. I’ve come to terms with the fact that there are just going to be days when they are a tad too long or a tad too short.

        I clearly love my shoes more than my pants, so they’ll all get hemmed to one middle length and the world will continue to turn, surely.

    • Mine are too long…also thought it was fine this morning. So here’s to some company while feeling awk today about pant length! :)

  5. how much is too much? :

    Early thread jack! I’m actively looking for a new position in marketing, and I’ve been having terrible luck landing an interview. An acquaintance of mine works in HR, so I asked his opinion of my resume and a few tailored cover letters. His general opinion was that I was providing too much, and that I was either overwhelming the recruiter/hiring manager with too much information, or giving them enough to find something not to like (ie: they pick out one line item and assume they’d have to re-train me, in a stack of 100+ resumes, they’re looking for any little thing to warrant trashing a resume to narrow down the list.)

    So, to those of you in hiring positions, what are you looking for? How much is too much? For reference, I generally provide the following: link to a 2 minute intro video where I talk about some career highlights, link to my blog, link to a presentation with some different skills, link/attachment resume, and, depending on the position, some links to articles on other sites that I’ve written or work samples that I directly relate to the position. My cover letter is usually about one page long, and my resume is two pages. I have about 4 years of experience, but several different companies/skills within the experience, which is why I have the longer resume. Thoughts?

    • Good grief. Completely agree with your friend. This is too much to provide in a job application or with your initial contact with the employer. I’d narrow down to cover letter, resume (no more than 2 pages) and if you must, include the blog link in your resume contact info. If they are interested, they will look you up.

    • Sweet as Soda Pop :

      I am in recruiting for a Fortune 5 company. These are my thoughts:

      – only when you have 10 years if experience can you have a 2 pg resume, and even then I’d prefer to see one page.
      – I am not going to watch a video of you, or look at presentations you’ve made when 150 other people have applied for the job and I need to look at their resumes too
      – a cover letter shouldn’t be much more than 3 short paragraphs, if that’s more than a page, I’m not reading it
      – unless I’ve asked for work samples, don’t send them. I’ll ask for them when I decide to interview you
      – keep in mind that I see everything on a computer, not in paper form; concise, clear communication is what I’m looking for

      I hope this wasn’t too harsh, but I honestly think providing all that (unrequested) info is turning the recruiter or hiring manager off. We get a lot of information to sift through and I love the candidates who have managed to communicate their awesomeness in a single page.

    • I’m not in the marketing space, so it might be different, but I would generally be cautious in assuming a hiring manager with 100 resumes is even clicking on links to view work/experience/personal videos.

      Make certain you are highlighting the key skillsets applicable to the particular job. The rest of the companies/skillsets can be minimally mentioned or even omitted.

    • For four years of experience, the rule is that resumes shouln’t exceed one page (only people with 10+ years should really have two-page resumes), no matter the number of jobs you had. To push the document onto the second page, it better be for a good reason – the people doing the hiring would appreciate it, unless they ask specifically for two-page resumes.

    • SF Bay Associate :

      Wow. Way, way too much. Your friend was being kind in his assessment. An application like the one you have now would never get past the first glance-over at any of the companies I’ve worked for. You need at least ten years of experience, or an engineering career which requires you to list an entire page of various languages/technologies you have worked with, to merit a two page resume. Your resume should be one page, and your cover letter should be less than one page (i.e. lots of white space on the one page). No video link, no blog, no presentation, no articles (you can list that you were published if appropriate). Do less.

    • Unfortunately, I have heard several “career counselors” suggest the type of resume the OP is posting about for marketing positions. Supposedly since the market is so tight, that applicants have to put in a lot of bells and whistles in order for their resume to stand out. Sad that there is so much mis-information being put out there.

    • OK, I mean this gently, but you need to know that that 2-minute video is landing you in the crazy pile.

      Make a regular, one-page resume (you only have 4 years’ experience, for Pete’s sake! You don’t need two pages) and a three-paragraph cover letter. For jobs that require publications, you can have a separate section on your resume for published articles and if that pushes you over a page that’s fine, but take it off when it’s not required. If you really need to put in a link to something, put in a link to your LinkedIn page. That’s it.

    • how much is too much? :

      OP here – wow, this is kind of a punch in the gut! I appreciate all the honest feedback, and I guess I’ll be slashing my resume and cover letter this weekend. It’s frustrating to hear that I’ve probably screwed up several great opportunities by providing too much information.

      @EAC, you are correct that the advice for marketing people is to submit a lot of bells and whistles. There are tons of news stories/blogs/anecdotes about how someone did something really crazy for their submission, and ended up getting 10 offers for different companies. It’s frustrating to hear that the reality is that most hiring managers are annoyed by the bells and whistles, but as with most things, it seems that only the extreme cases make the news. I even acknowledge in my cover letter that some people may want to skip the bells and whistles to go straight to the resume, but from what I gather in this thread, I’ve already made such a terrible impression that the straight-forward option has already been wasted.

      • I sympathize with you. It sounds like you are working really hard and trying everything you can to get the job you want. There is so much conflicting advice out there, and it’s hard to know what will make the right impression. I have noticed those news stories too and have probably made similar mistakes (making a portfolio for a job interview when it wasn’t requested comes to mind). Good luck! I hope it works out for you.

      • What I would suggest is having someone who has the same or similar function in the same field for the position you are seeking look over your resume. You didn’t mention whether your friend is in marketing. Also check linkedin and look at what people are putting in their profiles to get some further ideas, again search for people who have the same type of positions.

        Hoping that you have better luck scoring interviews.

      • Go to Ask a Manager dot com for oodles of resume/application advice. I wouldn’t necessarily agree that you cannot have a 2 page resume, I think the standard on that is changing. But, I agree with what Sweet as Soda Pop says so much I’m going to quote it:

        “We get a lot of information to sift through and I love the candidates who have managed to communicate their awesomeness in a single page.”

        I am not in marketing, but i would think that *especially* applies in that field!! The better you are at it, the more you should be able to be awesome *and* concise.

        And seriously, get Ask a Manager’s resume guide, buy her e-book. She is brilliant, and it will help a lot.

        • Totally second. AAM is brilliant. Reasonable, balanced, full of common sense.. however you want to put it :-).

          And think of it this way OP, you’re trying to be an extreme case with this fireworks approach. But would you really want to work with one? I think being clear and calm would win you points anywhere.

      • fellow marketing :

        As someone in the same field, I would agree with most of this advice. You have to remember that HR is the gatekeeper in most cases, so the first person you have to impress is not another marketing person. Also, as you progress in your career, execs in other functions (Sales etc.) might be decision makers in hiring. Consider your audience carefully for each position. Show them that you can do more with less (bells and whistles) and work those self-marketing skills!

      • Down be too down on yourself – you have put in a lot of effort and you’re going after what you want. Follow the advice above and save the fancy stuff for LinkedIn (some people are going to look for you there, trust me) and tie your blog, whatever else you can to your LinkedIn. Also I’d have copies of things available if you get an interview and if it seems relevant to present them. Example, 2 weeks ago I had a job interview and they were trying to suss out who I know because they are trying to go after certain work and they want my help and my contacts. I said, well yes, I know this person and that person, two of the people you’ve mentioned are my reference, and I have a letter of reference from very.important.person. And then so they knew I wasn’t BSing, I offered up copies of my references and my reference letter (they actually said they were impressed). Just be prepared to take advantage of opportunities, they will present themselves. PS — I can expect a job offer tomorrow from this group.

      • Marketeer :

        Hope this isn’t too late, but I’m a hiring manager in marketing, and I can honestly say that please don’t submit all the bells and whistles. A clear, concise, well-written cover letter that shows you know what our company does and you read the job description, accompanied by a tailored resume, is all I need. When we screen you, by all means send the videos and the samples – that’s the time for it. Honestly, before that, it’s just too much. (And when I say concise – 3 paragraphs max in the cover letter; 1 pg resume unless you have over 10 years’ experience, have published a book, are a notable industry speaker, etc.)

        Seriously, though, from my perspective, I find the bells-and-whistles candidates are usually trying to cover up something else. The cover letter is what sells me – I’ll give a candidate with a weak resume the benefit of the doubt and have them screened if they have a strong cover letter. Hope this helps and I wish you lots of luck in your job search!

        • how much is too much? :

          OP here again – This is interesting that you think bells and whistles means the person is trying to cover something up. I suppose my “secret” is that I didn’t go to a top 25 undergraduate university, and I had to work as a barista during the horrible economy ~2 years ago because the freelance marketing work I was doing wasn’t enough money/hours. Sigh, this is just unfortunate, but as I said above, I’ll be slashing the resume and cover letter this weekend. I was trying to be enthusiastic and driven, but apparently I’m coming across as…. well, not those positive traits! I do appreciate the feedback, and I will try to be less “helpful” in my future applications.

          • Don’t sweat all that stuff!!! Those aren’t secrets. Just refocus your enthusiasm and ambition and show them off when you get a phone call and land an interview. You’re smart enough to not only solicit advice but also process it and take action. I think that ability combined with your enthusiasm, proactiveness/willingness to pull up your bootstraps and get some supplemental income are worthy traits.

          • If you think your work samples are going to move you up to the next level, then I would make a centralized page and link there (even link from a cover email) because it’s so much easier to click over to a website from a hyperlink than it is to enter in a URL that you have listed on a paper application. Also, it takes up less space.

  6. Easter Bunny :


    My husband and I (no kids) have this tradition where we each fill plastic Easter eggs for each other with something nice and inexpensive in this them (years past have included ‘coupon’ for back rubs, favorite dinner, movie tickets, etc).

    I totally forgot about our tradition until this morning when husband had gotten them out of the closet and they were on the counter.

    Any ideas for cute/loving things to stick in plastic Easter eggs this year? I only need three things…it’s more of a ‘thinking of you’ tradition, and not a money tradition – I don’t believe that we’ve ever spent more than $20 total on the other one.

    • That is adorable. And even more so that he remembered and you didn’t. Tickets to see a movie? A golf ball? Condoms (too risque?)?

      • Easter Bunny :

        Absolutely not! Risque and funny are big themes in all of our gift-giving.

        • If risque is a theme, why not one of those egg-shaped vibr*tors? It’s egg shaped, which hits the Easter theme, right?

      • Richmond Lawyer :

        Love the condoms suggestion, haha. Sounds like a fun adult Easter. I already feel the Catholic guilt while typing this . . .

    • Love this. Favorite candy is an obvious one. My fiance secretly likes (unisex) lip balm/chapstick, so maybe something small like that. My fiance also loves beer, so a small, sturdy, discreet bottle opener that can go on his key ring is nice (fancy beer shops often carry these). If there’s something you can think of that is inexpensive but too big to fit in the egg (maybe a book?), what about a clue about where to find it?

      • Totes McGotes :

        Re: bottle opener, I have seen a bottle opener that is a ring – looks like just a plain silver ring appropriate for a guy, but has a little cutout on the bottom side. Very cool!

      • This won’t fit in an easter egg, but I just bought this bottle opener for myself and my brother. They have free shipping and the wrapping is beautiful:

        It arrived in 2 days!

    • Cuff links? Concert tickets?

    • Tired Squared :

      Do you have Kindles/Nooks? You could buy him a book or e-certificate and put the (folded-up) page into the egg.

    • A thong or other s*xy piece of underwear (for you)?

    • Vibrating c*ck ring? If you can find one. Little bottle of l*be. :-P

      More serious, not too expensive cuff links. Candy. Little bottle of liquor (maybe).

      Little gift certificate for something (foot rub, etc.)

      • good lord. not what i expected to see on this page

      • Vibrating c*ck rings are usually for sale near the condoms. Same for little bottles of l*be, like a sampler pack of KY.

      • Whoa, not was I was expecting either, but I do enjoy the risque post! ;)

        • Anon-who-loves-cookies :

          Have you all been reading a little bit too much of Fifty Shades…

    • lottery tickets (scratch off or regular) are always fun-imagine if you win!

    • I bought my SO little Darth Vader heads that are supposed to be a plastic Easter egg substitute (they open in the middle). They didn’t hold much but he got such a kick out of them. He ate all of the candy and lined up the Darth Vader heads on the diningroom table.

      • Gail the Goldfish :

        I want some. Where on earth did you find them? Bonus points if they also have Boba Fett and Stormtrooper heads to go with the Darth Vader.

        (Can I give myself Darth Vader head easter eggs?)

    • Lottery tickets, his favorite candy, coupon for his favorite s-x act.

    • Easter Bunny,

      I love this idea. It is so incredibly awesome that I am stealing it to do for my DH, who celebrates Easter. (I sort of celebrate with him, out of a spirit of togetherness and love of the symbolism of renewal, plus my general love of chocolate and bunnies!)

      Perhaps you could write him a very short poem and roll up/fold up the poem in one of the eggs. One can be as risque or not in one’s poetry. :-)

      • EB the OP :

        I love it, too. But I can’t take credit. My husband is an incredibly sweet and thoughtful man who comes up with these ideas and remembers every holiday/anniversary/special event in our history together.

        Also, I’ll be composing a poem the next few days….

        I have funny/risque poem and lacy thong so far…I’ll still be deliberating on my third choice. (wink)

        • giggling at the thought that he might think the lacy thong is for him. Which we know it isn’t, but, still……

    • awww so cute. I wish I could do this for SO. He just left on deployment so it would be perfect, but he won’t be getting mail in time for Easter.

      • @ eek

        I’m wishing him a safe deployment, and a safe return. Sorry he won’t be getting mail in time for Easter.

        When I ordered Girl Scout cookies, I ordered 15 boxes. 5 to eat right away, 5 to stow in the cupboard/freezer, and 5 boxes to send to the troops. Makes me wonder if it took forever for those cookies to get out there (Afghanistan?) and what condition they’d be in by then, yikes.

        • Susan – thanks it means a lot to me; I feel really choked up, actually. He has 822 Marines that he’s leading and so many of them are babies and on their first deployment. I really hope that they all come back safe and sound because they have so many moms/dads/siblings/grandparents/spouses/SOs/kids etc that worry about them so much. The good news there is wireless internet there and mail gets there usually within a week.

          I sent all sorts of baked goodies on his last deployment, so I am certain that yours arrived just fine and they were treasured and consumed within minutes. It’s very thoughtful of you! Thank you.

          • semper fi… (i’m from a marine family:)

          • May his boots lead him homeward. May he stay safe. May he be healthy. We’ll be thinking of him.

            For those interested, there is a program where people can become pen-pals with deployed servicemen and women. You can also send gifts for a larger group. One example is at: http://adoptaplatoon.org/site/

          • Thank you so much – really, it means more than I can possibly put into words. And immensely grateful for your support as well as air conditioning, a mattress, a bathroom/privacy, not having to work 18 hr days/7 days a week for 7 mos..etc. etc. You’re awesome.

          • Oh, my nephew will probably be one of those babies soon. He just finished his advanced infantry training at Camp Lejeune and will be going to Mojave Desert for desert training before deployment later this year. Makes my stomach clutch just to think about it even now.

          • Kontraktor :

            I hope you feel better soon. It stings the most right when they leave. My husband has been gone for 8 out of the last 10 months (6, then a brief stint at home, then 2 more), and I understand/feel your pain. Wishing your husband safe (and his troops as well).

        • When I was deployed, we were adopted by a Girl Scout troop and survived off cookies for weeks (at the time we had been eating prepackaged military food for months). It didn’t matter if the cookies were crushed or melted slightly, they were still delicious!

          • Yay!

            Two years ago, I went to a shooting range with my DH’s coworkers and one of the instructors there had been deployed to Iraq 2 times already. He described the prepackaged food (MREs or “Meals Ready to Eat” as “Meals Rejected by Everyone.”) That really made me laugh because it was so funny and cringe, because gaah, we should feed our military folks better!

    • dancinglonghorn :

      I actually got my husband a pair of Jack Tudor pale yellow and green striped boxer brief underwear for his Easter basket as a funny thing rather than a stuffed animal and along with his usual candy. I think it will be memorable for him!(PS – I wanted a pair with bunnies on them!)

  7. Threadjack: Wawa, I think you’re the other Corporette with getting married this weekend–if you’re reading, congratulations!!! Hope you have a fabulous time.

  8. I’m interested in what others thinks about whether flared pants are still OK for the office? I’m around Kat’s age, and agree that it’s possible to get stuck in a fashion time warp where the clothes that were stylish when you were in your 20s look good forever.

    • Anonymous :

      Personally I’m not a fan and think they can make you look ‘young.’

      I received a suit and the pants were too wide/flared for my taste. I was able to get the entire leg line resculpted into more of a straight line cut by a skilled tailor for a reasonable amount.

    • I still wear boot cut/flares. I am generous of bottom and look weird in straight leg and terrible in skinnies unless I’m wearing them under boots.

      I don’t go too flared, and tend toward boot cut, but I refuse to give it up. REFUSE!!! Sorry. A little intense.

    • I’m slightly younger than Kat. I think a flare/boot cut flatters the hips. It evens out your silhouette. I’m never going to stop wearing them.

  9. Is it just me, or did we discuss this exact same thing a few months ago??

  10. Great idea about wedges! I always wear flip flops/sandals/loafers while commuting (I have to walk five blocks from my parking lot to my office) but feel so awkward with my pants looking long and bunched up while walking through downtown. Thanks!

  11. Okay, I’ll ask: what’s wrong with the black flared pants posted above? Is it just that I’m reading this on my phone, that I can’t see their problems? They don’t look egregiously 70s to me (I reserve that for pants you could use to sail a boat with). They’re maybe a little long, but otherwise they look fine to me. What am I missing?

    • Are you talking about the ones in the top right corner of “Pants Too Short?” Because I agree, I don’t think they’re too short or too flared. But I’ve never claimed to be the most stylish person in the room *sigh* still, that’s why I’m here!

    • Merabella :

      If you are talking about the French Connection ones in the post, not in the how to guide I agree. They look cute to me.

      • Anonymous :

        Yes, I was talking about the French Connection pants. Glad I’m not the only one who thinks they’re cute!

        • (Oops, that was me.)

        • Ahh, those. I agree they’re cute as well, although I will say that I think they should be shorter. Or not worn with a black shoe, where are this woman’s feet!? But I don’t think they’re too flared. It’s just a “look” like…paisley :-)

      • If those French Connection pants are wrong, then sorry Kat but I don’t want to be right!

      • Yeah, the FC pants looked so cute, I ordered them. :-)

  12. Does anyone else think that Kat’s assessment of pants lengths errs a bit too much on the long side? The “correct” pants all look way too long for me. Who wants their pants that close to the ground?

    • Merabella :

      I personally like pants to have a bit of a break in them, so I like the longer side, but some of the “too short” images look alright to me too. What do I know?

      • All I know is that this post just makes me want to wear skirts. Pants are so stressful in so many ways.

        • Yes, this. I’m exhausted just reading about the lengths and pant-leg shapes. I’ve always been more of a skirt/dress person anyways.

      • The “too short” images look fine to me, too. And some women do not wear heels.

    • Anonymous NYer :

      I was thinking this same thing. Obviously we all know what too long is (dragging on ground, getting caught under heel), but I think shortness is more in the eye of the wearer. A woman posted above about feeling awkward b/c she caught herself in the mirror and her pants looked too short. That’s one thing, and that’s understandable, but I think most of the ‘too short’ pants wouldn’t look wrong to me.

      I think ‘too short’ is more obvious when wearing flats, but when wearing heels, maybe we just wanted to show off our no-doubt fabulous shoes more?

    • I like to have the vamp of the foot mostly covered, so I like the “correct” pants, too, but I don’t think most of the too short parts are horribly egregious. Personally, I tend to wear pants that length with boots/booties, so the vamp of the foot is covered by the shoe, if not the pant itself. But the black ones on the top right corner of “too short” aren’t bad, and I think you could get away with the bottom right because they’re sandals, and you sort of want those strap details to be seen.

    • SF Bay Associate :

      Kat’s opinions look like the correct lengths to me. You’re right though Sadie – I wear skirts almost exclusively now.

    • I wear my pants that close to the ground. For my body proportions, that’s what looks best. I have a very long waist and relatively short legs, so I try to do as much as I can to lengthen my legs, within reason (i.e. without resorting to crazy high heels). I do this with pants by wearing them on the long side and with pointy toe shoes.

      • I have the same body type, but what if it’s raining? don’t your pants drag in puddles?

        • Depends on how rainy it is. As long as my pants aren’t longer than the “just right” lengths, which look to be just above the ground, and as long as there isn’t a ton of rain or lots of standing water, no they don’t drag. If they get wet, it’s only slightly. If it’s a really rainy day with deep puddles, then I wear a skirt with rainboots or pin them up for the commute.

      • Amelia Bedelia :

        I agree. this length seems to lengthen my leg the most.

    • I think the “correct” pants could possibly be a smidgen shorter, but I think that the “too short” pants are all too short. Obviously, some of this is a matter of preference and if something makes you happy, by all means…. But I would say with wider pants, seeing that much shoe is usually not the most flattering look, and can look esp. awkward with chunkier heels.

      That said, I am far from perfect in practice (shocker!) and get this wrong all the time. One thing I notice is that pants that look long enough at home magically become too short when I start walking. I think it’s helpful to move around a bit when trying on shoes/tailoring pants because like other items, pants tend to ride up a bit as we move about and, thus, what looked fine will sometimesend up looking a tad too short.

      • Funny, I have the opposite problem (doubtless we’re different body types) – I find that over the course of the day my pants get longer. I think it’s because they stretch out (usually at the waist, which is where everything runs small on me), and sag enough to slip down, so what was above the floor starts dragging on the floor. (This mostly happens with jeans – I have one pair where the back hem is shredded from dragging only ground.)

      • MissJackson :

        Yes, agreed. I actually kind of trick my tailor because what is the “right” length to his eye (and mine, actually) when I’m standing still is just a bit to short IRL. So I wear shoes that are .25″ higher than my “to go” heel height when I get my pants hemmed. Works like a charm!

        • MissJackson :

          Gah. *too short. and *”go to” heel height. Must remember to read through before posting :)

  13. *”most of the too short PANTS”. I can’t write correctly for beans today. (Bummer that the day’s work is editing!)

  14. Since I have much wider hips than waist, I have been known to belt my pants 1 or 2 notches tighter for the commute. My pants ride up but it is covered by my top. Then once I get to work I loosen the belt, the waist rides down and the pants are appropriate for my work shoes.

  15. Nice guide. I also am a fan of boot-cut pants for work.

    As for comfy commuting shoes that won’t make hems drag, I commute in these admittedly frumpy but oh so comfy wedges from Easy Spirit: http://www.easyspirit.com/Mako/52352385,default,pd.html?variantSizeClass=&variantColor=FLIFILE&cgid=52803851&prefn1=catalog-id&prefv1=easyspirit-catalog

    They are like walking on a sponge.

  16. Kontraktor :

    I’m in the group of people who say that all the ‘too short’ pants look just right to me. The ‘perfect’ pants look way too long. Maybe it’s just because I am shorter (so I feel it’s reaslly easy for pants to look like they are eating my legs/feet) and I like to err on the side of caution by hemming a little shorter, but who knows. Also agree with the commenters saying that you’re probably always going to have a little bit of variance in where your pants fall because of different shoes. I don’t have enough pants to tailor each pair to only a specific set of shoes. I think so long as your (non-cropped) pants cover at least part of your high-heel (like they do in all of the ‘too short’ examples), it’s probably just fine/more or less okay.

  17. I personally like all my pants to drag on the floor at least a little if they have flared legs. That’s what the designers have in mind with these pants and why they come in such long lengths and have such wide legs. They are supposed to either drag or at least touch the floor with just the toes being visible. Palazzo pants, which I wear often, are supposed to drag on the floor a lot by design. Mine actually puddle on the floor and it’s a very sexy and feminine look. My yoga pants and flared jeans all drag even with my stilettos on. Pantsuits for work are the same, they all drag slightly and pretty much all the businmess women I see during the day have their pants dragging over their heels. I think the tips in the article are more suited for men whose pants should stop well short of the floor. But womens pants should always go to the floor.