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Pairing jeans with fitted tops

Not sure how to style those chic new jeans you just bought? From high-waisted skinnies to bell-bottoms, we’ll show you how to create the most flattering proportions.

Laura Marano

Rock bell-bottoms with a body-con top

When styling a super-fitted top with jeans, proportions become extremely important, points out television costume designer and clothes editor at, Alison Freer.

“One of my favorite looks is to marry a body-con top with a pair of fitted through the hip, flared at the ankle, bell-bottom style jeans for a very ’70s feel,” she says. We recommend tossing on a wide-brimmed hat and suede ankle booties to complete your look.

Balance skinny jeans and a fitted shirt with a chunky shoe

According to Freer, another option for an ultra-sleek fitted shirt is to team it with some super skinny cigarette-leg jeans and finish the look off with a shoe that has some chunk to it, such as a rocker-style ankle boot or a sneaker wedge. “Proportion in fashion is all about balance, and a head-to-toe tight, fitted look really needs the weight of a hefty shoe to anchor it.” We couldn’t agree more!

Sport high-waisted jeans with a crop top

Skin-tight tube tops are no longer in (thank goodness!). Nowadays, however, fitted crop tops are everywhere. To avoid showing off your entire midsection a la Miley Cyrus, pair yours with high-waisted skinny jeans that reveal only a sliver of skin. Headed out for the night? Throw on a cool leather jacket over top, step into some sky-high platform wedges and you’ll be ready to tear the town up.

Layer on a loose boyfriend cardigan

If you plan on pairing two tight items together (jeans and a fitted top), you may want to balance things out a bit with a looser layer, like a long boyfriend cardigan or a drapey sweater. Both will generally give off the appearance of a slimmer figure for those who are at all concerned about their hips or waist in a tight top. Plus they’ll add some interest to a plain ensemble, not to mention keep you warm.

Put on a belt

One of our favorite casual ensembles of all time is a pair of blue jeans worn with a fitted white T-shirt. It’s classic and cool, and every girl has this combo in her closet. To tie the look together and accentuate your waistline, a basic thin brown belt will do the trick. If you’re short-waisted though and would like to elongate your torso, leave your fitted tee untucked sans a belt.

More style advice

Denim with denim: How to pair denim washes together
Comfortable chic travel outfits
5 Great “date night” looks

Image credit: Brian To /

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