I Wore High-Waisted Breeches and I'm Never Looking Back
Two of NF's editors tried out the high-waisted, Aisling breeches for a recent NF.shop photoshoot. Let's just say they are properly addicted to this flattering, trendy, saddle-friendly look and couldn't wait to share their experience with NF readers.
Lizzy Youngling, NF Daily Editor
Just last week, my sister and I were praising the glorious features of high-waisted pants. “How did we survive wearing such low-waisted jeans? What were we thinking?” we asked each other, laughing at the thought of ever wearing such unflattering and unstylish pants. Although I’m now shuddering at the thought of putting on those uncomfortable jeans and making sure my stomach wasn’t showing for the world to see, at the time, I felt cool and up-to-date with the current trends. Boy, was I wrong.
As editors at NoelleFloyd.com, Erin Lane and I (Hi, I’m Lizzy) are self-proclaimed fashionistas. Not the kind that obsessively follow New York Fashion Week nor the ones that are constantly updating, donating, and acquiring new clothing and accessories to keep up with the Joneses. We appreciate a good trend that can function both at the barn and out on the town, while at the same timing making us feel good inside and out. (Can I get a hell yeah!?) So when high-waisted pants entered our equestrian worlds – yes, I’m speaking for the both of us – we never looked back. No longer do we have to worry if our shirt will untuck mid-course, or if our butt cracks will show when we’re jumping. Pulling on my high-waisted breeches I feel secure, confident, and ready to take on the world.
"Give me a high waist or give me nothing."
Rewind back to a few weeks ago during our NF Team week (hello, sunny Wellington!) our fabulous Director of NF.shop (hey, Whitney!) so graciously asked us if we’d pose for a few shots in the newly released Aisling breeches. Never to turn down a chance at playing dress-up, Erin and I happily obliged. I must admit, this was the first time I had the opportunity to wear legitimately high-waisted breeches (I don't count competing in the short-stirrup circa 1995 sporting old-fashioned, higher-than-normal pants with homemade bows), and I was blown away.
In putting on The Caitlyn Breeches by Aisling Equestrian, I felt as if my world stopped. How could a pair of riding pants feel so effortlessly comfortable, yet look so fantastically chic and flattering on my 6’1” rower's frame? I didn’t want to take them off and I needed them in my riding wardrobe ASAP.
Although it would be a dream to live in such a fantasyland of the “Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants”, where one pair of jeans magically fits all body types, unfortunately I have to break the news and call the producers out – that’s not possible! But what I can confidently say is that high-waisted pants, whether you’re rocking breeches in the barn or jeans on the town, flatter all body types. Hugging all the right places, the higher waistband magically shapes a woman’s body to show off all her best assets. As my grandma always told me, “If you got it, flaunt it!”
Erin Lane, Director of NF.insider
Honestly, I truly can’t over-express my dedication to the high waist. Long before high-waisted boyfriend jeans and booty-baring short shorts were in fashion, I was rocking waistlines that line up with the edge of my sports bra. The higher, the better, in my book; I want my top tucked in and my belt getting up close and personal with my chest. I don’t wear anything low-rise. Never have, never will. Give me a high waist or give me nothing.
Believe us or not, there IS life beyond the Tailored Sportsman.
Let me start at the beginning, to give you some context: I’m the shortest tall person you’ll ever meet. Meaning, I’m actually not short (I’m a little above average at 5’7”) but everyone thinks I’m extremely height challenged. I was catch riding ponies until my mid-20s because trainers were convinced I was the size of a pre-teen. Even today, in my 30s, I’m given the large ponies and 15-hand hunters to ride because everyone at my barn is utterly convinced that I am, at most, 5’2”. I blame my disproportionately short legs. They’re really throwing off my whole “I’m a long-legged equitation queen” vibe. But don't get me wrong. Although I’m undeniably envious of Lizzy's Gisele Bündchen meets Olympic athlete stems, I’m really proud of, and in love with, my compact little body. It lets me ride any size horse, school pony hunters, and fit nicely on polo ponies. It just needs a little help in the fashion (and optical illusion) department.
Enter, the ultra-high waist. My savior in a pant. I’ve been rocking those aggressively high, old-school Tailored Sportsmans for at least a decade now because I haven’t been able to find anything else high enough for my liking – until now. I actually still have the same pairs of Tailoreds – you know, those side zip ones with the waistband that doesn’t have any stretch – that I wore in high school. They’re just so high, I haven’t been able to give them up. Even the so called ‘high-rise’ breeches at my local tack store paled in comparison.
When Lizzy and I threw our hats in the modeling ring at our team retreat in Wellington, I was pretty psyched to find that I’d be donning Aisling’s Bianca breech. Lizzy put her pair on first, and my mind exploded a little bit because she looked like a legit supermodel (with an Angelina Jolie Tomb Raider vibe). I was a little worried about how they would work on me, because – as noted – Lizzy and I have very different body types. Low and behold, these were the pants of my dreams. They’re so high in the most glorious way. They hit at that perfect place; above the navel, below the ribcage, where everything is good and narrow. They are insanely flattering in every way (I couldn’t stop looking at my own butt, they were that good). The pockets were so chic. The fabric reminiscent of a perfectly tailored trouser.
I was in a high-waisted dream, and I never wanted to wake up.
Luckily, I don’t have to, because I’m reinventing my wardrobe with this breech as my staple. I honestly don’t buy new riding clothes often, as much as I’m into fashion. I really want to improve my riding clothes selection, but I’m a babe on a budget and I get sucked in to the same black hole we all do: I spend all of my money on my horses. Still, these pants are coming home to mama – they’re budget-friendly, and just like the aforementioned classic black trouser, they’re versatile enough to go with anything and everything. It’ll feel good to wear a pant that wasn’t made back when my mom drove me to school.
High-waists doing me another solid: elongating my legs, and bringing me fully into adulthood.
Ready to try out high-waisted breeches for yourself? Shop Aisling at NF.shop today!
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Photos by Jaakko Kastari.