R29 Staff Try Summer’s Most Intimidating Trend: The Short Suit
SS19 kindly threw up the perfect hot weather workwear solution: the short suit. From Dior’s longline utility number to House of Holland’ s orange and raspberry sorbet piece, via Off-White’s neon green one, every style and shape you can think of was seen strutting down the catwalks of fashion month.
Women’s tailoring has improved tenfold over the past few years, so it makes sense that variations on the classic trouser-and-blazer tag team would be offered eventually. And what better for summer than an easy co-ord that can be dressed up or down with Carrie Bradshaw-esque heels or box fresh trainers, taking you from office to rooftop bar in a flash?
The short suit can be as formal or as casual as you like, depending on the cut, fabric and colour, but that doesn’t mean it’s not an intimidating trend to tackle. Height and leg confidence tend to be the main roadblocks to taking a deep dive into the trend. We asked six R29 staff members – who vary in height from 5’1 to 5’11 – to choose a short suit and let us know how they felt wearing it.
Click through to see whether SS19’s most challenging trend won them over.
Georgia Murray, Junior Fashion Editor
“I love suits, from Bianca Jagger-style flared trouser suits to ’70s dagger collars on blazers. Shorts, however, I have actively avoided my whole life. I’m 5’6 and have always tried to elongate my legs, rather than shorten them. Also, I hate summer dressing (so much skin to burn!) and as my inner thighs are well acquainted pals, shorts just ride up as soon as I start walking. But hey, the SS19 catwalks have spoken, and who can argue with a summer look that nails city slickin’, office-appropriate aesthetics like this?
I chose this linen number because it looks like the kind of suit George Michael would’ve worn on holiday with Princess Di back in the ’80s. And that’s the energy I’m going for this summer. Linen is a no-brainer, too: easy, breezy, no need to iron as those creases are persistent. I wore it with my trusty Dr. Martens sandals, Ray-Bans and a plain white tee, and while I liked the look, as soon as I walked outside it confirmed why shorts are still my thighs’ enemy number one. I’ll have to sit this trend out, damn it.”
Loup Charmant Crossover Front Linen Blazer, $335, available at MatchesFashion.com Loup Charmant Tellin High-Rise Linen Shorts, $300, available at MatchesFashion.com
Natasha Slee, Associate Creative
“I’m 5’11 and more of a culottes and long shorts person; I love anything loose, wide-legged and comfy. On sweltering days, I bring out my favourite pair of high-waisted vintage Levi’s jean shorts, rolled up for maximum hot pant effect. I was self conscious of my legs as a teenager, but I give less shits now. Tailored shorts had a revival in the ’00s (I’m recalling a black shiny pair from Primark that I wore with tights to school…shudder) but I can’t say they’ve crossed my path since. My colleagues wear some absolutely amazing suits, so I was curious to try this trend and see if I could pull off the look.
I’ve got a few weddings coming up, and this & Other Stories baby pink satin combo looked like the perfect outfit to sip a glass of champagne (or three) in. Once wearing the suit, though, honestly? I felt like a schoolboy. The shorts stopped just above my knobbly knees, so it didn’t feel like the most flattering cut for me. However, on someone shorter they’d probably come up a little longer. I got a lot of compliments from colleagues as I walked out to take this photo though, so that helped me look past the knees and vibe the look as a whole.”
& Other Stories Long Fit Satin Blazer, $77, available at & Other Stories & Other Stories High Waisted Satin Bermuda Shorts, $35, available at & Other Stories
Eni Subair, Editorial Assistant
“I like to show my legs off in summer while it’s warm. I find the short suit trend quite intriguing, but it depends on the cut. I love a good Bermuda short or loosely cut fit and cycling shorts were on rotation for me last summer. I chose this ASOS suit as my favourite colour combination is green and pink (I think the entire office is aware of this now) and so it was the perfect fun hue to pair with pink sandals.
As the green is quite overpowering, I paired it with a white square-neck vest to help balance it out. I was hot as hell wearing the jacket, and just waiting for sweat patches to appear. I’d say more of a lightweight material (like linen) would nail what I require from it and make it appropriate for warm weather. It just
might survive in an office with air conditioning.” ASOS DESIGN Linen Suit In Lime Pop, $75, available at ASOS
Sadhbh O’Sullivan, Social Media Assistant
“I’ve avoided shorts for a while because I associated them with the high leg denim cutoffs of my teens (not that I wore them, I had a Big Fear of them) but now I love shorts. My favourites are linen ones from Uniqlo. I do feel like they’re quite casual though, and despite having no qualms about my hairy legs on the weekend, it felt quite intimidating to pair tailoring with my hirsute calves.
I love this trend, though, and have been clamouring to try it for a while. I’m a big fan of suits and how powerful and efficient they make me feel, and the shorts make it so much more fun. I chose this Topshop number because I never wear beige so now is the time. The blazer was a bit oversized, which I loved – the exaggerated shoulders vs my bare, pasty legs felt delicious and ridiculous.”
Topshop Camel Pinstripe Blazer, $65, available at Topshop Topshop Camel Pinstripe Shorts, $42, available at Topshop
Vicky Spratt, Features Editor
“I promise to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so in that spirit: I don’t love wearing shorts. I’m about 5’1 and I’ve always worried that they cut my legs off, so I’ve avoided them. Perhaps it goes back to being at school: I dreaded summer and having to get my legs out back then.
I was scared to try this trend, but as soon as I slipped into this suit I felt like Christine Baranski as Cecile’s mum in
Cruel Intentions meets Elle Woods in Legally Blonde and everything was fine. I never wear bouclé and I figured if I was going to get out of my comfort zone, I should probably get all the way out. How did I feel? Powerful tbh. My law conversion degree is imminent.”
RedValentino Metallic-Check Wool-Blend Jacket, $595, available at MatchesFashion.com RedValentino Metallic-Check Wool-Blend Shorts, $325, available at MatchesFashion.com
Jazmin Kopotsha, Entertainment Editor
“My relationship with shorts honestly depends on the day, the weather, where I’m going, who I’m seeing and whether or not the moon is in Pisces. I love them in theory but tend to get nervous about getting my legs out when it comes to throwing a pair on. My apprehension makes zero sense, though, because I’m more than happy to run around in a mini dress.
The short suit trend is one that I admire in a huge way but not one that I ever saw myself in. My day-to-day style is very relaxed and a bit slapdash and I felt like by wearing a suit I’d be misleading people into thinking that I have my shit together, when I really don’t.
I went for this suit because the structure of the jacket is bolder and more confident than I tend to be sartorially so it intrigued me. Also, it’s summer. The material is breathable (read: will just about survive a sweaty commute) and I’m a sucker for a longline blazer. The short length is fun and respectable which is the vibe I feel like I might need to embrace a bit more, but you’ll find yourself with a heavy crotch crease if you sit down in them.
I felt like a fucking boss. Like a qualified, functioning, stylish boss. The loose fit but strong shape was surprisingly freeing.”
& Other Stories Oversized Cotton Linen Blazer, $89, available at & Other Stories & Other Stories Belted Linen Blend Shorts, $49, available at & Other Stories
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