Hell, No!

Did I tell you that I’m taking a trip South? Yep! I’m having a “Girls Plus Dad Weekend” in Savannah for the Savannah Book Festival. Fun, right? Three out of four of my sisters and I are meeting down at my parents’ house. I’m actually writing this in the Philadelphia airport on Thursday morning, and I’ll be coming back late on Sunday.

As usual, I’ve been frantically trying to keep up with my schedule, so I haven’t had much chance to savor the anticipation of a mini-vacation. Over the past few days I’ve been trying to organize the girls’ schedules and get ahead on work and catch up on all of the laundry before I go.

I also thought that I’d look for a pair of khaki pants for the trip. It’s upper-50s, low-60s in Georgia right now, which is a tough temperature for planning purposes. On the one hand, walking around Albany yesterday, was I the only one who thought it seemed downright balmy in the 30s? On the other hand, I was wearing my wool sweater and my LL Bean-you-could-wear-this-in-the-arctic coat. Unzipped, but still.

There’s something about packing for a trip that always makes me find deficiencies in my wardrobe. I currently own one pair of serviceable-not-cute khakis. For a fabulous girls’ trip, I thought I’d go for cute. It turns out that this was a big mistake.

First of all, what the hell is with the patterned denim trend? Yowza. This is like a sweat-inducing flashback from my junior high days.


I took this picture in Target. If there is a grown-up woman who can pull off pale peach jeans with a pattern of little white hearts (I know: it’s hard to make out in the photo), I have never met this mythical creature.

Although, I’m clearly not an authority on fashion. I mean, I only own one pair of serviceable-not-cute khakis, so what the hell do I know? And maybe I’m particularly sensitive to this heinous trend (which I should have seen coming, since we all suffered through a neon flashback last year), because. . . . Wait.

I’m sorry. This is difficult for me.

I am a recovering patterned denim wearer.

I’ve blocked a lot of it out, but I’m pretty sure I once owned a stonewashed-with-white-palm-trees number.

I even have quite fond memories of a pair of black-white-grey checked jeans that pretty much single-handedly attracted my first boyfriend when I was in 8th grade. He was a 9th-grader who walked behind me between 4th and 5th periods. So when I say single-handedly, it’s more like single-ass-edly. Maybe patterns have their place sometimes on some people.

But the picture above was in the ladies’ section. Not girls or juniors.

But this was just a spectacle that diverted me from the main event: my hunt for khakis. I tried on many, many pairs of khaki pants. They were just so. . . skinny. I have got calf muscles that would make Tony Horton proud and quads that are excellent for skiing. They are not excellent for jeggings. They’re just not.

Generally speaking, I like my legs. I have had gushing compliments from random strangers (both male and female) on the fabulous musculature of my legs. But something about these pants that are so skinny and so thin makes me feel exposed, like I’m one of those bodybuilders who looks normal and attractive, and then they flex and part of you goes “Gah! Too many muscles!” That’s how all those pants looked. In store after store. When I was in Old Navy I could comfort myself that at least I didn’t have any kids with me (this time!) as I overheard a little girl telling her mother that she looked fat. (“That hurts my feelings,” she replied, sounding calm and serene. And she deserved a Maternal Merit Badge for sure).

I became so desperate that I went to the mall, and there I finally located a decent pair of pants that worked for me (Gap Broken-in Straight Khakis), and, better yet, they’re pushing a  new “Skimmer” line (as in skims above the ankles) which me fits like a regular pair of pants is always supposed to fit! Except that, of course, the colors I liked didn’t come in my size, and the ones in my size were not colors that I liked. So, I can shop later, but no khakis for my trip.

And for those of you who are more fashion-forward than I am (that’s a low bar), or for those who want to recall the good ol’ days, the skimmers also come in a bold floral print.



  1. Maggie

    I love the skimmers and have really embraced the whole colored bottom thing, maybe because it draws attention to my ok legs while drawing attention away from my badge-of-honor maternal midsection? Prints – not so much.

  2. Great post Katie! I used to rock the printed stretch pants by a brand called corneche – I think. So many different patterns, zippers, and I bought them because they did make the bottom look good! I have thought about this trend, I like tiny print like a barely there mini polka dot, but they would have to be cheap! Overalls are making a comeback too! Yay!

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