It’s funny: I’ve had a ratty old pair of cutoff shorts that I made about ten years ago and have kept hidden at my parents’ house in Mississippi ever since. I never thought I’d let them see the light of day in a non-oountry context. They are one of my favourite things to wear back home, super comfortable and worn in with that sense of carefree laidbackness that truly epitomises the rural South.
When I got back to London a couple of months ago, I found myself missing those cutoffs (aka “jorts”, apparently). Well, it’s been too cold for shorts, but when we finally got a taste of summer this past week I have been all about the cutoffs. And I’m not alone: they are positively trendy this summer amongst the fine young things.
(To be honest, a lot of the cutoffs I’ve seen a bit TOO cut-off, and verge way past Daisy Dukedom with not only their pocket flaps showing, but also their butt-flaps. I saw a girl on the train yesterday with cutoffs so short it was quite obvious that she was not wearing any knickers, and on top of it she had her fly unbuttoned and spread open, as if she didn’t have quite enough flesh on display. Seriously, “ladies”, this is not a good look!)
Cut-offs can be comfortable and casual without being trashy, and the best ones are custom-made by your own good self at home. Personally, I only ever make my cutoffs from a pair of well-loved Levis 501s (the men’s kind), and I just happened to have some in my closet (or HIS closet, not sure!). 501s have that classic slightly high-waisted silhouette that is super flattering to small waists. Just cut them off at your desired length. I like turn up edges so leave them an inch or two long (please no shorter than the pocket flaps to avoid looking like a bad 80s hairband video bint!). Then cut some slits in the side hems, and wash them to fray the edges. Done! These are the perfect pair of slouchy summer shorts.
During the operation:
See also: Refinery 29 on new ways to style your cutoffs. I like mine with a plain tshirt (or a stripey mariniere), statement necklace, and some cute sandals (as above). If you want to dress them up a bit, J.Crew nails it: