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Your Stylist: Wearing leather shorts this spring

February 21, 2011 |  8:00 am

Resident Image stylist and market editor Melissa Magsaysay soothes your sartorial woes in the weekly Your Stylist blog column


In this installment of Your Stylist we address the leather shorts trend for spring. Yes, it may sound like an oxymoron, but a bunch of brands and designers are making them for the warmer weather months. WANG550 They’re a fresh and interesting take on the traditional shorts silhouette and as light, or lighter than denim, just not as good with water, so think twice about wearing them to the pool or beach. 

Rodriguez425But for the everyday or even nighttime events, leather shorts can add edge to sporty or even feminine basics. I love how Phillip Lim styled the bright blue laser cut leather shorts in his spring 2011 line with a preppy tan sweater and chunky platform wedges. G Star is making a pair in a bone-colored leather, which pairs easily with denim or even just a casual gray T-shirt tucked in.

For an edgier nighttime look, Alexander Wang is making a pair of black leather shorts that have an interesting pleat detail on the front as well as a slanted hem that is flattering on the leg. Wear these with a bare leg and a chunky black or bold-colored sandal and a classic, fitted tux shirt tucked neatly into the waist band for a sexy and summery take on a tux.

Robert Rodriguez is making a very practical pair of relaxed fitting leather shorts in a rich chocolate brown. These can be dressed up or down, but look best paired with rugged basics like a chambray button down and a chic pair of wood soled sandals.

Don’t dismiss leather shorts for spring and summer just because the material seems like it would be too heavy for warm weather. Leather shorts are as versatile as denim shorts but look more polished and transition easier from day to night. Just make sure the weather doesn’t call for rain when you plan to wear them out.

Send your style queries to

-- Melissa Magsaysay

Photos: Top from left, leather shorts on the 3.1 Phillip Lim spring 2011 runway/3.1 Phillip Lim; right, leather shorts on the G Star spring 2001 runway/G Star

Right, Alexander Wang black leather shorts, $550, at

Left, Robert Rodriguez brown leather shorts, $425,at