Denim Trousers: Up Down All-Around & Link Up

Denim trousers are this gal’s perfect solution for when you really just want to wear jeans but are concerned that they aren’t quite “work appropriate”.   I remember making this discovery about 20 years ago when I first came across this wonderful creation at Ann Taylor.   And I’m here to prove that not only are they a great option for the office, they’re very versatile and can go most anywhere you want to take them.

The pair that I’m sporting in this post was a thrift store find from last Spring. The brand is Dana Buchman (a brand sold at Kohl’s) but the pants were in like-new condition. Until I stumbled across these, I had forgotten about my fondness for denim trousers (the Ann Taylor pair were long gone) so home they came with me. This pair has a bit of stretch in the fabric which makes for a more flattering fit, a longer length that is slimming, and a great set of pockets.

Dressed Up For Work

In Up Down All-Around, I usually share my work look first so that is what you see below. You can’t beat the power of a blazer and pumps to legitimize denim trousers as office appropriate. Add a striped button-down blouse and a structured faux-croc purse, the combination becomes unstoppable.

Blazer – Merona, old (option at Talbots, option at ModCloth)
Blouse – Old Navy, old (option at Target, option at Talbots)
Denim trousers – Dana Buchman, thrifted (option at Macy’s, option at Banana Republic)

These blue and black suede pumps were another “nearly new” thrift store find (first seen in Boutique Shopping, Goodwill Prices) and I bought the purse at New York & Company many, many years ago.

Pumps – Nine West, thrifted (block heel option, or try a bootie)
Purse – New York & Company, old (saddle bag option, RM option)

Dressed For Play

To me, one of the hallmarks of personal style is the ability to re-imagine an item. Many creative sorts will alter, dye, cut, or embellish to bring new life to an old favorite. Sometimes, these alterations can be temporary, like gathering the hem of a long tee into a side knot or simply rolling the cuff of one’s skinny pants.

When I think of dressing for “play”, I tend to opt for comfy shoes, and given the longer length of these denim trousers, comfy shoes would be a challenge unless I shorten the pants. Hmm, why not give the cuff roll option a try?

Cardigan – J Crew Factory Store, bought last summer (similar at J Crew, option at Brooks Brothers)
Blouse – Merona, thrifted (option at Dillards, another option by NYDJ)
Sneakers – Grasshopper by Keds (nearly exact)

The Husband’s initial reaction to this outfit was to ask if I was headed to a picnic which was the look I was going for. After all, isn’t a picnic the epitome of “play”?  It’s hard to tell in these photos but I’ve doubled up on the gingham in this outfit. The blouse is a pale peach mini print and I’ve got it tied at the waist in front.  I’ll admit that there are better pants/capri/shorts options for this look but in a pinch, doing a cuff roll on denim trousers (held in place by safety pins) could work. Fine, whatever!

Scarf – Gap, old (pretty option, another choice)
Straw tote – unknown (cute option at TJ Maxx, or this one at Old Navy)

Dressed For Fun

My denim trousers are ready for a good time when I pair them with cork wedge sandals, a marl knit tee, and a graphic scarf. The weather here in So Cal is starting to warm up already so real soon, I’ll be packing away my tall boots and bulky sweaters and my sandals will once again see the light of day. At night, I would add a lightweight cardigan to ward off the chill (my apologies to those who got hit with snow this week #sorrynotsorry)

Marl tee – Apt 9 (exact)
Cork wedge sandals – Franco Sarto, bought last year (option at DSW, option at Kohl’s)
Tote – Simply Vera Wang, old (similar look, another option)

How fabulous is this scarf?  Where else have you seen 52 bloggers (x 2 due to pattern repeat) assembled into a Fashion Rainbow?  Well, that’s a trick question because you saw it in this post about SpyGirl Anne Bray’s Fashion Rainbow gallery exhibit. And now it’s available as a scarf. It’s this season’s must-have accessory and I dubbed it my “good luck charm” for this month’s How I Wear My feature on The Rich Life In Wine Country (check out the partner blog post as well at Everything Just So).

Let’s Wrap This Up

Now, onto the Fine-Whatever link up for this week. My featured contributor from the last link up post is Ada (and little Vivian) from Elegance and Mommyhood. The theme of that last link up was In Real Life and nothing can be more real to a blogger than celebrating a blogaversary as Ada was for her weekly link up.

Some of you may be wondering why there was no link up post last week, or not. I wish I could tell you that I’d had technical difficulties (pftt, pftt [warding off evil spirits]) or that I was deathly ill (now knocking on wood to scare off the rest of the evil spirits) but neither is true. The truth is that another week of too many stress filled hours at work had taken its toll yet again and then Saturday was spent watching our son in a rowing competition that was about 90-minute drive from home.

Afterward, The Husband and I revisited the Goodwill Boutique mentioned above and I managed to get him to take me to The Outlets At Orange. Oh my, what a fun place that was! Sunday was spent getting caught up on things around the house as well as taking several sets of photos for upcoming posts. I actually had two posts planned for last week but not the time to get them put together so I just let it go.

During this past week, I finally got around to responding to all of the comments from my blogger meet up post and I’ve been so inspired by them. With renewed vigor, I’m back on track and this post has published at its usual time (I hope). There’s a bit of a backlog of posts waiting to be published so you’ll be seeing a little more from me this week than usual.

Back to the matter at hand, do you share in my fondness for denim trousers? Since they’re not a trending style currently, does wearing them make me look dated or am I being fashion-forward? Not that it matters much to me, I’m still going to wear them because I like them.

Let’s connect! Subscribe, tweet, follow, friend, love, pin, stumble … all options are available and waiting for you. I look forward to hearing from you. And don’t forget to add a post or two to the link up.


 Loading InLinkz ...

37 thoughts on “Denim Trousers: Up Down All-Around & Link Up”

  1. Rena, there are so many fabulous things about this post! Of course, your fashion blogger scarf! I have yet to feature mine on my blog although I have worn it several times. It is so versatile and matches everything…because it is a rainbow! I love the denim trousers and each way you have them styled. They are super chic for a work look with pumps. But I also really love the large cuff with sneakers. So, so cute! And while I did miss you last week with your link up post, I totally get it. It happens to me often…sometimes my only excuse is complete lack of motivation and nothing to write about. But I am happy to see you back and looking just as fabulous as ever!


    1. Shelbee, you’re so kind … thank you for all of the lovely compliments and the encouragements. Isn’t the Fashion Rainbow scarf fabulous? and how cool is it to wear a work of art that you’re a part of?

    1. Laurie, I’m glad you like the different looks I have for these pants. I see you wearing brands that are UK based and I find myself wishing we had those stores here in the US.

  2. I bought a pair of denim trousers last year from a consignment shop—only they are a little blacker. But I do love them and have worn them a couple of times. But seeing this post gave me the AHA moment of trying to cuff them. That’s brilliant, Rena!! That will make them way more casual and then I can get some more use out of them!!

    1. Emma, I’m so thrilled with the scarf and my only wish is that I’d gotten it sooner. With warmer weather approaching, I won’t be wearing it as much as I would like for a while.

  3. Denim trousers are indeed very versatile! You created fabulous outfits! I so want that checkered cardigan… Such a fun look!

    And I love your SpyGirl scarf!

    Thanks for the link up! Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

  4. There’s just something both classic and playful about trousers in a dark denim fabric. They make you feel like you’ve somehow gotten away with wearing jeans in your “get down to business” workplace.
    Thanks for showing us all kinds of great alternative stylings for these great pants Rena. I loved your husband’s comment about your picnic look. I think the gingham top added to that illusion too! You look great in all of these well crafted looks Rena.

  5. I love the ,,picnic,, look! Very creative and makes me think of Summer immediatly! But the work look is very elegant especially with those beautiful shoes! And the scarf is Just amazing! I am so jalouse! Have a happy Sunday!

    1. CURLY GIRLS UNITE! If only I’d know so many others with curly hair when I was growing up instead of being teased for it. Thank you, Patti, for the compliments and for all of your encouragements.

  6. What fabulous trouser jeans, Rena. OMG and what a sweet surprise seeing myself and my pretty little Vivian as your featured blogger. Love it! Thank you so very much!

  7. First I love that great scarf. Second to you now not your daughters jeans that brand of denim. I found a pair at a consignment shop for $.50. They are my favorite jeans

    1. Kim, thrift store and consignment shop finds can be just as good (if not better) than what you can find retail. Thank you for stopping by and commenting.

  8. Rena, you are fabulous. I love this type of post where you take an item and show so many different ways of styling it. You hit the mark on the head in every outfit! Well done. I think my favorite is the work version, only because I love the look of the blazer and the heels. So chic! I am simply amazed at how much blogging you do and you work full time! WOW! I only work about 20 hours a week, then watch my grandson after school and I’m lucky to get out three posts a week. But it is all good, right! You are doing a phenomenal job and I’m so glad I found your site! – Amy

    1. Amy, you’re so kind and thank you so much for the compliments. I’m glad you like the outfits and my styling ideas. Your encouragements and support mean a lot to me.

A comment from you would be lovely