For Angie: Dark cropped pants with light footwear

Ok so after reviewing my last year or two's summery outfits, I actually do the white with dark cropped pants less than I thought I did (probably helps that I don't wear cropped pants all that often, and also that a hard drive crash last spring cost me a chunk of my photos so my records are incomplete). Here's most of what I found, with longest pants at the start. #1 is the only one from this season, I wore it earlier this week actually (aside: suuuuuuper high happiness, holy cats!); I suppose those pants are closer to full-length than cropped but I included them anyway. #8-10 start to kinda employ those tips so they also probably don't count, but they are light footwear when probably dark would work "better".

I'm noticing that oftentimes the white footwear is "bookending" a white top, or at the very least a lot of exposed skin (which on me may as well be white), so that's probably a big factor to why I feel like they work well. I think as long as I include enough skin or lightness elsewhere in the outfit, I'm personally just more comfortable with lighter footwear than with black. No need to answer (rest those wrists!), just wanted to share :)

(Of course, feel free to comment ladies! Work continues to be super busy, but I'm hoping I can get some outfits posted up soooooon <3)

This post is also published in the youlookfab forum. You can read and reply to it in either place. All replies will appear in both places.


  • replied 4 years ago

    This is totally interesting. Aside from how gorgeous you are, and no wonder you felt like a million bucks in the first outfit - it's outstanding! - you have the look nailed down. You know, I'm not sure I would have chosen light coloured shoes so automatically, but now I see how perfectly it works. I need more light coloured shoes immediately.  Now, I don't have the dark hair you do, but I think this could still work.  I love all of these photos - you are such a talented stylist.

  • merwoman replied 4 years ago

    These work incredibly well!  I agree with you Aida - often the light coloured footwear is bookending a light topper or skin. Those pale blue (?) strappy sandals are gorgeous on you!

  • Karie replied 4 years ago

    I love each and every one of these gorgeous outfits. My normal reaction would be to pair dark footwear with most of these, but I really like your lighter footwear. I need to get out my light colored shoes and wear them more often immediately!

  • Sal replied 4 years ago

    Yes it definitely works with the light footwear.

    Sometimes it is one of those things that you just know yourself about your is hard to articulate why.  

  • Mona replied 4 years ago

    Light footwear works wonderfully with lighter tops and your skin. I feel like wearing my bone coloured pettys with black pants tomorrow. But they are full length so may not work as well.

  • Kristin L replied 4 years ago

    They are all great outfits, Aida. You wear light colored shoes so well!

  • catgirl replied 4 years ago

    SO FAB!  Your first outfit is my favorite... what are the pants?  Proportions are perfect as always.  Your combination of engineering skills plus fashion creativity is such a good balance.

  • shevia replied 4 years ago

    These are all gorgeous shoe twin! You are the master of light shoes with dark hair. These are all my favorites, truly. But the pattern mixing in the last one deserves special recognition.

  • Aida replied 4 years ago

    Thank you ladies!

    Lisa, I don't think you need the dark hair for it. Really, that just allows me to forgo adding an additional black element to keep things balanced when there's a lot of other black/dark in an outfit. Your lovely darker eye makeup should provide a similar, if more subtle, effect.

    Kiwigal, I hadn't really thought of it but I suppose this is becoming a sort of signature of mine eh? ^^

    Mona, I've actually got a lot more outfits in my archives with full length pants + light footwear. Definitely works! I hope you'll post the outfit :)

    Una, the pants were a gift from Claire when I was in AZ a couple weeks ago. I'll have to check the brand for you when I get home.

  • Gigi replied 4 years ago

    Great outfits! I know this post is about pant length, but I have to comment on your last two outfits as being simply outstanding. I think the pattern mixing in the last outfit is genius!

  • rachylou replied 4 years ago

    This is a really cool idea- dark pants, light shoes.

  • Style Fan replied 4 years ago

    I love the first one and last one.  Amazing pattern mixing in number 10. 

  • Olivegreen replied 4 years ago

    The neon touch in the first one just makes it. And although all of the outfits are fab, that cobalt and white ikat shirt sets you off perfectly. Igzactly the right amount of colour and contrast.
    Er, what pants?

  • Ingunn replied 4 years ago

    You have fantastic style, Aida, and I'm so inspired by your outfits. Wow, what a drool-worthy collection of lighter footwear you have. I particularly covet the light grey strappy pumps. I think most of these work so well (and they definitely do) because of the heels. Second, you seem to be very careful about picking up the lighter color somewhere else, so the shoes always look intentional. 

  • Transcona Shannon replied 4 years ago

    Oh I really need to study this...the length of the pants with the light footwear and overall perfect proportions in these outfits make them top notch. I got back my newly shortened drapey EF pants from Wonder Woman yesterday so will be looking to these outfits for inspiration. I'm going to try them with my new sand colored high vamp sandal booties - well, once the snow is gone...thanks for posting these Aida :)

  • viva replied 4 years ago

    I love these looks on you, and I wonder if part of what makes it work so well is the incredible line those shoes make with your pale skin. Whatever color you are wearing on your body, the pale shoes against your pale skin immediately lengthen you (not that you need it!) -- it always seems to work because of that.

    It's interesting because it does seem to break a rule (unless I am confused) -- and I break the rule in the opposite way. I am not much of a pale shoe wearer (one pair of silver sandals, that is it) so I tend to wear dark shoes with everything. I would wear all of your tops with white jeans and my wine Okalas. And I'm sure that would be the first thing Angie would say: this would be better with nude or white shoes. haha.

    I have to say I have never been a matchy kind of person and I had to really think about the whole bookending thing when I joined YLF. In fact, when it happens for me now it is always just by chance. Shoes for me are as much an accessory as jewelry: I choose them emotionally, and sometimes they end up being a weird bit of punctuation to whatever outfit I am wearing.

    But you look fabulous in all of these renditions.  Really fab.

  • lyn67 replied 4 years ago

    "I think as long as I include enough skin or lightness elsewhere in the outfit, I'm personally just more comfortable with lighter footwear than with black"-you took it out of my mouth, Aida! And, O.M.G.I. LOVE .ALL.YOUR.LOOKS!!!! Thanx for inspiration, you did a great job gathering all these fab outfits in a post!

  • Keturah replied 4 years ago

    Oh. My. Goodness. Aida, you are simply smashing!! You put together such amazing outfits. Very trendy, bold, and yet they look like "you." (Sometimes I see women and the trend wears them, instead of them wearing the trend. I think you know what I mean?)

    I love the lighter shoe. Something about the light colors and use of almost pastel type colors pulls our your skin tone and makes for even greater, more beautiful contrast with your dark hair. It's absolutely perfect! Such perfection. 

    I don't even have a favorite outfit. I loved 'em all. I would like to live in your closet, please.


  • Sara L. replied 4 years ago

    Great looks! I usually chose dark footwear so I really enjoy your lighter options. It gives me some ideas to lighten up my outfits.

  • Aida replied 4 years ago

    Wow thank you very much, ladies! Fun to hear more love for the hectic mix in #10 (I do recall being verrrry tempted to pair that with my gray/black checked flats, heh.) And happy to have inspired more light shoes with dark pants pairings *mwahaha* ^^

    Una, I checked the pants. They're Ellie Tahari, but I think Claire found them at a consignment shop so I've no idea when they're actually from. Gorgeous thick Tencel though, really fabulous drape. I wish I had a pair in cream, too!

    Ingunn, yes you are certainly right about the heels being a big factor here. I do also wear flats (dark and light) with cropped pants, but almost exclusively with lighter pairs; with the darker pants, the contrast creates more cutting lines so I usually opt for heels to correct some of the shortening.

    Shannon, ooh that sounds like it would work quite nicely! Especially fun if you have a printed top that's got white, black, and camel/tan in it. Hope your weather turns warm sooooon!

    Viva, all kinds of interesting thoughts! Yes, the lighter shoes certainly work as almost-nude with my skin but are more interesting looking than a proper peachy nude. That's a big part of why I enjoy wearing them. I love the idea of you pairing your wine Okalas with a light outfit. I think it probably works better than black would because the effect is much softer, and probably ties in nicely with the darker bits in your hair. I'm also the same way with shoes, even though it doesn't really show in this set of outfits (clearly I need more pale heeled shoes ;) ).

  • Justbrowsing replied 4 years ago

    Definitely gonna buy some light oxfords. Guess I will get my shoe game in check first and the clothes will follow? Lord help me!

  • Tanya replied 4 years ago

    Oh wow, love all of these Aida, you totally knocked it out of the park.  You totally set a bar for the dark bottoms and light shoes combo.  I adore #2, #3, #6 and #9.

  • Suz replied 4 years ago

    I can't get past #1; it is SOOOOO brilliant on you. No wonder you had high happiness factor. Sheesh!! That is a textbook example of how to wear this look and I want to copy ASAP with whatever I have at my disposal. 

    I often wear dark footwear with light bottoms. I know it is leg shortening, and I have to bookend with a darker top element due to having light hair, but it's also practical in slush and generally crappy road conditions, so I do it, and sometimes I enjoy the contrast. 

    I also wear light footwear with darker bottoms quite a lot, especially with my taupe sandals, my python Pettys, and my metallic sandals. 

    My favourite, though, is two-tone shoes (with dark and light). I find those so easy to work with and so much fun. I guess the python Pettys sort of fall into that category a bit, now I think of it. 

  • Sterling replied 4 years ago

    I wasn't certain this was going to work, but you look fabulous.  Absolutely fabulous.  

  • Windchime replied 4 years ago

    Such a treat to see a slew of Aida wiw\'s! I love your crane tee shirt.

  • Aquamarine replied 4 years ago

    Goodness, I just posted a similar question. These visuals really help me...they totally work even though I would not have thought they would.

  • Aida replied 4 years ago

    Thank you ladies! Happy to hear more inspiration for this look, it's (clearly) a personal fave :)

    Suz, in the winter, for sure, it's tough to get away from the dark footwear because of the practicality. For that reason I'm grateful that we don't get loads of snow -- the silhouette restriction would drive me batty! Interestingly, I prefer the contrast of light bottoms/dark footwear much more in cold weather than in warm although I really enjoy wearing graphic looks in the summer; I just usually go with light footwear with them. And I'm with you on the multi-tone shoes, those are always easy to incorporate (the Pettys strike me as a gray visual feel, but I can definitely see how they'd function as two-tone). After wearing my dalmatian flats a ton last year, I'm on the hunt for another black/white shoe so that I can give the other pair a break.

    Aquamarine, looks like you were able to get your question sorted. FWIW I'm also 5'4" and IT.

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