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The Single Worst Item of Clothing in America

pink-cargo_350This is the popular pant I’d like to set on fire. (Yes, literally torch.) From Tim Gunn’s Fashion Bible: The History of Everything in Your Closet.

Worse even than the dreaded jegging, the ubiquitous cargo capri is flattering on no one. I maintain that it dominates the country primarily because people hate shopping, and therefore they appreciate that with the cargo capri they only need to fit the waist and hips, letting the pant hem fall where it may. Alas, it’s actually the hem length that makes the wearer look shorter, squatter, and sloppier than desired.

“I have big legs,” cargo-capri wearers will say to me, “so I don’t want to wear tight pants.”

To this I say, if you are shy about your legs, the last thing you should do is wear shorter pants, baggier pants, or pants with pockets, much less all of these things at the same time. They will only make your legs look bigger and shorter. Think about sleeves. If you have thick arms, do you wear wizard sleeves? No! Tight capris can be flattering, especially on tall women, but baggy ones? I have yet to see it work.

TimGunn_300

At malls, I am tempted to set up the fashion equivalent of a guns-for-cash or needle-exchange booth and call through a bullhorn: “Throw your cargo capris into the flaming trash can, step behind the screen, and claim your wrap dress.” I would find it very cathartic . . . albeit very hot beside the pyre given the ubiquity of the look.

Photo: Kohl’s

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