Style File – Oxblood Pants

If you pay any attention to fashion media — blogs or magazines — you will know that oxblood is this season’s “color.” In less macabre terms, you could also call it burgundy or wine.

When I was moving from North Dakota to Chicago, I stopped at Mall of America for a few hours. Every store that caters to my demographic was carrying pants in varying hues of oxblood. Dark red is one of my favorite colors to wear, so I decided to add a pair to my wardrobe. I didn’t own any professional pants that fit, and this trend is something that I won’t mind wearing next year (unlike the patterned-pants fad that I’m sure will look dated next fall).

I bought the deep cabernet Maris Boot Cut Pants in Bi-Stretch from LOFT on the left. They fit well, except for the hem and the waistband. It’s nearly impossible for me to find a pair of pants that fit straight off the rack. I’m short and have ample hips, butt, and thighs with a smaller waist.

For years I bought pants that were almost right, but gaping at the small of my back. I tried fixing them with belts, but that didn’t quite correct it. So I would end up buying another pair of pants, again not quite right, which were rarely worn. It was a negative cycle, but I finally broke it when I embraced the idea of taking all my pants to be tailored.

photos by Cindy Savage

So off to the tailor I went with my new oxblood pants. I took them to my friends Cindy and Julia who own Crafty Broads. You can see above how much they gap at the small of my back.

Julia pinned them to fit my waist and at my preferred length. A few days later, Cindy made the alterations.

photo by Cindy Savage

photo by Cindy Savage

When I got them back, they fit perfectly. Below is the result.

photo by Travis Haughton

For work I paired the pants with a grey silk blouse from Banana Republic and Nine West black pumps. My apologies for the wrinkles — these photos were taken after work.

photo by Travis Haughton

photo by Travis Haughton

I also made sure that the length would work with both heels and flats for versatility.

photo by Travis Haughton

These pants are great quality, and they fit perfectly now. I’m considering buying another pair in a different color so that I’ll have more than one pair of dress pants.

specified photos by Travis Haughton – Wasabi Photography


  1. Liz says:

    One of these days, I’ll take the plunge. I swear it!

  2. lyn says:

    If only I lived in Chicago and could hire Cindy! I think that’s the hardest thing — finding a tailor you trust.

    You look great, by the way!

    • jacqueline says:

      I have a few suggestions to find a tailor. Ask around. Don’t feel shy about asking an older woman or man whose clothing always fits well. I find generations older than ours know what’s up when it comes to fit.

      Then try Yelp. See what people are saying on there.

      Lastly, cold call on a tailor. Don’t take something really special on your first visit. See how the tailor listens to you, if they make good suggestions. If they don’t listen and start marking the clothing too short, too long, too tight, too loose, etc., speak up. This is their job. I promise they will not be offended if you ask them to change it. And if they are offended or continue not to listen, this is not a tailor you want to work with. Politely tell them that this isn’t working and then take your clothes and leave.

  3. Liz says:

    Booty………………….sorry I don’t have anything more to contribute but your tush looks fab!

  4. Susan Claire says:

    That is the first time I have ever seen alterations done using safety pins! They did a great job!

Speak Your Mind