+ Look for Less

Morning Line: October 30

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Mango Cotton Cropped Jacket ($99)

A cropped jacket can be a chic addition to your wardrobe.  It’s a bit more modern than the traditional blazer, and offers a change of pace for women who need to wear a jacket or blazer nearly every day.  But how to choose the right cropped jacket, and how to style it, is a mystery to many women.

As the name connotes a cropped jacket is shorter than a blazer, but there is no standard length.  If you’re pear-shaped, look for a shorter jacket (usually at your natural waist).  If you’re bustier, a jacket that falls between your waist and hip is a better choice.

For years, I thought that I couldn’t wear cropped jackets, but then I found one that was the right length for my figure (slightly lower than my natural waist).  How do you know if it’s the right length?  When you look in the mirror, you shouldn’t feel like you look shorter or wider than you would without the jacket on.  And while I encourage you to try on a couple of lengths before you decide that the cropped look is not for you, I readily admit that some women will just never feel comfortable in one.

This Mango jacket is nice.  I like the boxy shape for a cropped jacket (I find it overpowering in full-length.).  I like the layered style on this cream Rebecca Taylor jacket and this classically styled tweed jacket from Gilt.

Looking for something fitted?  This Topshop Alexa jacket has a blazer-shape in a short length, as does this collarless Calvin Klein jacket.  For something a bit longer, try this blush jacket from Asos or this military-style tweed jacket from Piperlime.

The plus-size options were limited, but I like the look of this striped jacket from Kay Unger with the matching dress.  Petite ladies should check out this Ann Taylor jacket with a fitted shape a low-waist length.

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    1 comment

  1. Kate says:

    Belle: Thanks for your comments about finding the right jacket length. Can you touch on the fit guide for a blazer as well? I recently purchased a blazer from Neiman’s and the sleeves needed to be shortened. The seamstress told me that the “rule of thumb” is for the sleeve to hit about an inch above the arch between your thumb and pointer finger. This got me to thinking… what’s the appropriate length for a blazer, where should it hit below your waist/hips? What about vents in the back, are they better/worse for some body types? What about buttons? I know for men the rule is blazer buttoned while standing and unbuttoned while sitting — does this apply for women as well? Would love your thoughts on this! A diagram or pocket guide would be super helpful!

    October 30, 2014/Reply