I have noticed some sites call them culottes (if they are cropped), some sites call them Palazzo Pants and some just plain old wide leg. Whatever you choose to call them, I think they can be quite flattering on women our age. Let’s take a look at Wide Leg Pants for Women over 50 and discuss their history.
According to Wikipedia “Palazzo pants are long women’s pants cut with a loose, extremely wide leg that flares out from the waist”. “Culottes are an item of clothing worn on the lower half of the body, can refer to split skirts, historical men’s breeches, or women’s underpants.” Palazzo pants for women first became a popular trend in the late 1960s and early 1970s. The style was reminiscent of the wide-legged cuffed pants worn by some women fond of avant-garde fashions in the 1930s and 1940s, particularly actresses such as Katherine Hepburn, Greta Garbo, and Marlena Dietrich.
Thanks to their flattering silhouette, these pants are great for women of all ages, heights and body shapes. Diane Keaton has rocked the look for years. Wide leg pants have been the signature of both Diane Keaton and Meg Ryan. Jane Fonda often sports a slimmer version and Helen Mirren has often been spotted in more of a palazzo look.
Can ordinary over 50-year-olds pull it off? Sure we can. Thanks to their flattering silhouette, these pants are great for women of all ages, heights, and body shapes. They accentuate your waist and can hide a multitude of lower body sins, creating the illusion of an hourglass figure. If you are in your twenties or thirties you might be able to pull off the “pooled pant” look. For our age group, they should just skim the ground, unless they are cropped.
Our late friend, stylist, and mentor Brenda Kinsel was an ace at styling “well anything. We miss her so. Here she is styling wide leg pants to perfection. You can read about how she styled wide leg pants here
If you weren’t lucky enough to know Brenda and you want to learn more about styling anything bookmark her website.
Brenda would often highlight an outfit she spotted on someone on the street in her anatomy of an outfit series. Like this chic lady she noticed at an antique fair. You can read that post here.
My friend Elizabeth (aka the Contessa) wouldn’t think of wearing anything but a wide-leg pant, and she wears them well. She is quite tall so she has no trouble pulling off a totally voluminous look on the top and bottom. I would look like a “tank” in this.
Linda V Wright is rarely seen in anything but a wide-cut pant. She just oozes style. Here she has a crisp white shirt (a trademark of her shop Crimson in Paris)tied at the waist with her signature wide leg pant.
Here she pairs an unexpected combo, suede, and linen and belts the pants to accentuate the waist.
Beth Djalili from Style at a Certain Age rocks an Audrey Hebpurnesque look in black and white. I love the look of the cropped pant with the lace-up sandals. I have a pair on order.
For the upcoming summer, loose-fitting breathable clothes can strike the perfect balance between style and comfort. Balance out the loose fitting pants with a short jacket like Jennifer from a Well Styled Life did here.
Or with a body-hugging shirt with linen pants can be much cooler than a restrictive pair of shorts in a heavier weight. I am wearing my favorite CP Shades Wendy Pant here with the JP and Mattie shirt from Sundance, now only available in blue, and my favorite mules from Artemis Design Co. You can find the links and details to this post here.
These pants are also great belted like this. For spring to summer, I prefer flat sandals or closed-toe mules as I did above. Here I am wearing my favorite linen pant the Wendy from CP Shades, thanks to Ebay, I now have them in practically every color known to man thanks Elizabeth. You can purchase them in white here, on the CP Shades website, or at one of your favorite local boutiques. This seller on Ebay has several colors at good prices.
If you can still wear heels like Eugenia from Age of Grace, this would be a great look for a summer wedding. If not a pair of dressy sandals would do the trick as well. This is a signature look for Eugenia. You can get many more ideas from her blog or her instagram here.
On one of my recent Sunday Favorites posts with my outfit of the week featured these gorgeous J Crew wide-leg pants, that have been a reader favorite.
Here is a round up of my favorite wide-leg pants at all price points. I will feature one pair in my outfit of the week on Sunday, and another in an upcoming fashion post with Jennifer and Sarah.
SHOP WIDE LEG PANTS FOR WOMEN OVER 50
You can also find the Eileen Fisher linen crop pants on Ebay here.
The beauty of being “a certain age” is that we can wear whatever we feel comfortable and stylish in. I have been wearing wide leg pants on this blog since 2018. I am happy that they are once again considered stylish. They have always been comfortable.
Thanks for reading Wide Leg Pants for Women Over 50. If you are looking for some fall/winter options you might also enjoy my post Fall Fashion the Knitwear Trend. Why have I been wearing them since at least 2018? Because they are comfortable! Do you have any favorites that you have tried? If so please share. You might also enjoy my post How to Stay Stylish in a Heatwave here.