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Get a Cute Summer Transitional Wardrobe That Starts at the Ankle

Cute cropped pants for summer wardrobeBy Julie Inzanti
It seems like our carefully curated transitional wardrobe may never see the light of day, literally. April showers have decamped to June, extending or our seasonal affective disorder. We haven’t had the necessary handful of balmy days of May and June to brown our gams for the general public. And we can’t just unsheath our bottom half all at once—it happens inch by inch. For capricious climates, call on these essential ankle-length pieces.

The maxi: Dress or skirt, A-line or full-circle, classic, or Boho, the maxi is another perfect transitional piece. Don’t go too long (you will pick up all sorts of unwanted debris on the city streets) or too short (that lower-calf region is prime for a matronly look.)

maxi skirt/dress

You can wear a maxi skirt or dress with layers and sandals on hot days or with boots or wedge sneakers for cold days. Tall or short, curvy, or straight—the long sweep of a maxi is slimming and flattering for all.

Nadia Tarr is the master of the maxi. Her infamous Lolita Gown is the most versatile convertible dress/skirt I’ve seen. It can be worn as a strapless dress or fold the tube down and you have a skirt. It comes in an array of colors and exclusive stripes at Intermix. Throw it on with a Madewell denim shirt and Jack Roger platinum sandals.

The cropped pant: Cigarette. Denim. Rolled. Cuffed. Skinny. Straight. Boyfriend. Whatever style you choose, it’s important to remember that the right crop-length is essential. Don’t go too high (no capri pants circa 1994, please) and make sure your pant leg isn’t so long that it slouches over your ankle bootie.

The great thing about a cropped pant is you can create a professional look with a dressy top and ballet flats or pumps, or you can go ultra-casual with flip-flops and a tank.


A simple cropped pant is stunning and chic for any occasion. and because the pant is shorter and less overwhelming, you can play with patterns and wild colors. J.Crew is the mecca for chic, cropped bottoms in solids and dramatic prints. Most of the J.Crew styles here are under $200.


The bootie is the ideal transitional shoe. It is strange to imagine wearing a boot in June but here we are. If you wear booties with pants, you may have to negotiate the length and perhaps roll the hem so they don’t touch. With maxis any type of bootie will do. Just don’t let them compete for attention. If the boot has a lot of bells and whistles, opt for a simple bottom and vice-versa.

You will NEVER go wrong with a pair of Rachel Comey booties (unless you have to pay rent this month!).

Just a kind note, please no anklets or ornamentation of any kind in the foot vicinity. It’s just wrong. Kind of like those horrid new-agey ear cuffs… but that’s a post for another day.

Follow my Pinterest board @TheAnkle for more ankle-length summer wardrobe pinspiration!


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