Shorts are a tricky territory in men’s wardrobe. Any discussion around fit, length, styling and appropriateness, somehow seems to be governed with legislation. You may have heard of the infamous “two inches above the knee” heuristic along with other rules of thumb that are doled out for how an individual should live. This controversial relationship between men and their shorts comes from a mix of cultural connotations, bad fashion policing, and insecurity that surrounds this seemingly ordinary piece of attire.
So what rules should you follow and what should you avoid?
Fortunately, when it comes to choosing shorts, there are only a few guidelines to follow. First and foremost, shorts should never extend below the knee as it is unflattering and visually shortens the legs. The fit of the shorts should accentuate the body in a complementary manner, neither too loose nor too tight.
The right pair of shorts have a tailored fit that should hug your thighs and butts. You can check this by putting on the shorts and gently pinching the material that is around your thigh. If you are able to inch 1 inch, then the shorts fit just right.
Ideally, the shorts should have a tapered leg opening that defines the thigh without being tight or too loose. You must have enough room at the hem to move around comfortably.
Pleats or not?
While pleats may look great on trousers, shorts lack the weight and drape required to position the pleats correctly. Pleated shorts can go wrong very quickly. You can choose a sleek, universally flattering flat front.
To pick the right inseam length, consider these two factors; your height and your personal preferences.
How much thigh?
Another factor to consider is how comfortable you are showing off your thighs. If you are uncomfortable showing more personal preference and comfort should guide your decision. It's a good idea to try on different inseam lengths and assess how they look and make you feel. Experimenting with various lengths will help you find the inseam that suits your style and body type best.
One area that men tend to overlook when short shopping is how versatile the shorts are. Can you extend their use beyond gym or lounge wear? Can you quickly dress your shorts up or down as needed? Bamboo Ave’s Boundless Shorts are truly versatile and offer you the flexibility to seamlessly move from one activity to another without worrying about a wardrobe change.
Shorts are the ultimate comfort wear. But what if the fabric is not comfortable? Be sure to invest in a pair that takes comfort and style seriously. For example, the Boundless Short by Bamboo Ave are buttery soft and quick drying. The shorts are so lightweight and stretchy that you can go to the gym, hike, swim, meditate, do yoga, go rock-climbing or rolfing or anything you like in these.
Choosing the right shoes
The best way to decide the shoes you should pair with your shorts is to eliminate any that require long socks. So, shoes that look odd or feel uncomfortable without socks are out. If the shoes can be worn without socks or with no-show socks then they will be the right choice for shorts.
Here are some favourite contenders:
Low Top Sneaker
Minimal white sneakers are a wardrobe favourite because they go with everything. If you are fond of colours other than white, then try muted tones such as greys.
Leather or suede loafers are a classic staple for shorts. The best part about these is they easily translate into both casual and dressy occasions. Suede being softer than leather works perfectly for summer-time footwear.
If you have a preference for sandals, then you could opt for thick, leather sandals that work both for casual and formal occasions. Black, brown in smooth or grainy leather work well for any occasion.
Derbies are a hot favourite of their simplistic design, colour range and excellent material. Look for features such as softer materials, textured finishes, or details like contrast stitching or distressed effects. These elements add a laid-back touch to the shoes and make them suitable for pairing with shorts.
What to avoid when shopping for shorts:
The fit as we mentioned earlier is the most important factor. Avoid excessively skinny fits that overly define the thighs or oversized shorts that look like gaucho pants. Elastic waistbands and excessive detailing or features that add bulk are a strict no-no.