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Do summer right by finding the right shorts — or modifying your own with a little DIY

Do summer right by finding the right shorts — or modifying your own with a little DIY

How do you know when you’re doing summer right? Simple. When you’re spending as much time outside every day as possible and saving money on your summertime essentials. Living on the Central Coast, we get to celebrate all four seasons, but there’s just something so special about the summer, and we owe it to ourselves to take full advantage of these radiant days.

Let’s start with attire, shall we? For some women, summer means dressing in less to keep cool, but feeling uncomfortable doing so. Don’t feel discouraged. It isn’t just you. The truth is that most women have some insecurities once their summer skin starts to show. But every body type has a flattering fit; it’s finding it that can be the challenge.

Hot trend alert — shorts

For years, we’ve been told by the fashion world wearing shorts isn’t trendy. The tides have certainly changed as shorts are becoming more and more accepted in casual situations, and accepted for women of every age.

But which shorts look best on you? Here are some easy and practical tips to help you rock those shorts this summer.

  • The most flattering cut for every body type is the walking short. This mid-length short is perfect to pair with a suit jacket and heels for the day, a silk blouse for evening or flip-flops and a tank top for the beach on the weekend. The length of the short is about an 8-inch inseam, and should hit you right above your knee cap.
  • The best short for someone who is petite (under 5-foot, 4-inches) or who has an inseam under 31 inches is a mid-thigh short. This would be one with an inseam of about 5 inches, that hits your leg right where your fingertips touch your thigh. If you have very long legs, or are tall, the shorter length of this style can off-set the proportion of your silhouette. If you choose to wear this shorter length, be sure to finish your look with a flat sandal.
  • The best short for curvy gals, or women who have heavier thighs is a longer length. A walking short (sometimes called a Bermuda short) is a good choice. If your body is “A” shaped, or if you carry your weight on the bottom half, be sure to bring attention to the top of your silhouette with a brighter color of top or jewelry. Keep all the details on the top of your outfit, no stripes on your shorts, no fancy pockets, cuffs or contrast stitching. The simpler the better.
  • For women with long thin legs, bring some oomph to your bottom half with either a rolled boyfriend short or a short with some swing or interesting detail like a skort. This idea of additional fabric will balance your thinner bottom half with your shoulders. Keep the top of your outfit simple, and focus all the attention on your bottom half.

Goodwill has plenty of clothing options for the summer, but how about modifying one classic summer item — denim shorts?

Whether you find a good pair of Levi’s or Wranglers at Goodwill, or have that one good pair sitting in your closet, make a fashion statement of your own with repurposed shorts.

Here are some fun ways to make short’s last a little longer.

  • Fold: Are shorts feeling a little too long? Fold them! This beats the tearing at the bottoms and gives off a vintage look. Cut off excess length in a slant and fold up the rest. Sew each end to keep the fold up.
  • Embroider: If you are big into sewing, sketching a pattern or flowers on some tracing paper can spruce up your pair, all with a needle and some thread.
  • Paint: With some acrylic paint and dry time, your pockets can pop with a familiar painting or one of your own! Tape around the area you would like to paint to prevent it from bleeding over and coat the pocket with white paint so the colors do not blend with the denim.
  • Iron on: Who said patches are for jackets only? Patches run small to large and are easy to iron. This may be one of the simplest, quickest ways to refashion shorts. Iron on and around the pockets or put them on the sides. The placement possibilities are endless.
  • Fabric: Painting not really your thing? Another simple and easy way to change up your shorts is by gluing or sewing on fabric. Goodwill Central Coast has countless materials, from pillowcases, blankets, tablecloths, and other clothing that can be added on or inside pockets.
  • Lace: Shorts too short or tight at the thigh? Stitch some lace to the hem. Lace is a nice way to add fabric and make shorts more comfortable or longer.
  • Distress: A trendy way to alter shorts is by making them distressed. With some safety and a box cutter or scissors, you can pull strings, cut slits, and tear around to make them frayed. This is also a good go-to if your favorite pair gets snagged or forms a hole.

While you’re browsing your local Goodwill in search of the perfect shorts, keep in mind that we provide employment training, job placement services and other community-based services to our neighbors. Your purchases are making that mission possible.