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One Item, Four Ways: Denim Shorts


Denim shorts

As college students, we have to deal with limited closet space and a limited wardrobe budget. Therefore, it’s easy to become bored with the clothes we already have and fall into a fashion rut. But with a little creativity, it doesn’t have to be that way! One Item, Four Ways is meant to help you make the most of the items you already have in your closet, making old pieces feel new again.

This week’s item is a summer staple: a pair of denim shorts. Whether they’re cutoffs made from an old pair of jeans, or a cuffed style you picked up in stores, chances are you have at least one pair in your closet.

To help you avoid a denim shorts rut, I’ve created four very different outfits, all incorporating the same pair of shorts. Read on to check out the looks and get inspired to remix these staples!

Outfit 1: Running Errands

first outfit using denim shorts
Shorts, Top, Tote, Bracelet, Earrings, Shoes

Who says you have to run your errands in an old t-shirt and flip flops? This outfit pairs denim shorts with a striped tee, because stripes make practically anything look a little more chic. Coral TOMS complement the top and make the outfit scream “summer!” A neutral tote bag and gold-toned jewelry finish off the look.

Outfit 2: A Day in the City

second outfit for exploring the city
Tank, Earrings, Bracelets, Bangle, Bag, Sandals

This outfit would be perfect for a day spent exploring the city, whether you’re outside at the zoo or inside at a museum. Flat shoes are easy to walk in, and the colorful printed top and intricate jewelry add color to the look. Finally, a cross-body bag will store all your essentials while leaving your hands free.

Outfit 3: Dressed-Up Denim

third dressier outfit
Blouse, Necklace, Bag, Sandals, Belt

Your denim shorts don’t only have to be paired with casual tops: The juxtaposition of a denim short against a fancier top can create some serious style, as evidenced by this outfit. Pair your shorts with a button-down and add some statement accessories, like this chain necklace and studded belt, and you’ve got an outfit that’s casual enough for a day of shopping but still nice enough to wear to grab dinner with your friends.

Outfit 4: Summer Festival-Ready

outfit for an outdoor festival
Tank, Bandeau, Sunglasses, Ring, Sandals

Denim shorts look just as appropriate at an outdoor concert as they do running errands or catching dinner with your friends. By pairing your shorts with a sheer tank, worn with a neon bandeau bra underneath (an easy way to try out the neon trend), you’re guaranteed to stay cool no matter the temperature. Accessorize with a fun pair of sunglasses and a cocktail ring.

What Do You Think?

What’s your favorite way to wear your denim shorts? How do you stay inspired by the items already in your closet? What items would you like to see covered in “One Item, Four Ways?” I’d love to hear from you, so be sure to leave a comment!

Posted on on July 8, 2011 / Filed Under: Fashion Tips / Tags: , , , , ,

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20 Responses to “One Item, Four Ways: Denim Shorts”

  1. 1
    July 8th, 2011 at 6:05 pm

    This is really wonderful! I enjoyed looking at the “running errands” one because of the color combinations. Pacsun is a store favorite of mine, so the bracelet was especially cute. (:

  2. 2
    July 8th, 2011 at 6:19 pm

    I love these outfits, specially the ” .. Day in The City ” one. It’s really cool, and I love the tank !

    Thanks for this article !

    \\ ( ^_ ^ ) //

  3. 3
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:16 pm

    I like the looks- the third is really wonderful, but I don’t think the other three outfits are that different from each other. 2 and 4 in particular give off the exact same vibe, just with a different top.

  4. 4
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:59 pm

    Sidra and Yvena: I’m glad you like the looks!

    Maya: You know, now that I’m looking back at the post, I can see how outfits two and four are kind of similar. But since they’re meant for different events, I guess it would really be up to the accessories to distinguish them from one another. I’ll try to make each of the different outfits in the next installment more unique!

  5. 5
    July 8th, 2011 at 9:09 pm

    i LOVE this idea… pieces in my closet just get… lost to say the least.

    other one item four ways suggestions:
    – bandeaus
    – white pants/capris
    – cardigan sweater
    – toms shoes :) i love mine


  6. 6
    July 8th, 2011 at 10:35 pm

    What a lovely array of ensembles! I really like the idea of incorporating one piece of of clothing into many different styles and occasions. This is what I try to show with my youtube channel too! :)

  7. 7
    July 8th, 2011 at 10:59 pm

    I love this post! Please turn it into a regular series, I would DEFINITELY love to see more of this :) Great job!

  8. 8
    July 8th, 2011 at 11:04 pm

    Love it! I think outfit 1 just became my new summer uniform. Thanks for including Toms, they’re great shoes for a great cause.

  9. 9
    July 9th, 2011 at 12:07 am

    I love the 3rd look! the shirt and bag are fantastic. I am obsessing over oxfords right now, so it’s no wonder. great article!

  10. 10
    July 9th, 2011 at 2:05 am

    Love all the looks–especially since I can probably recreate most of it, which is kind of unusual for me. One comment–although I really like the bandeau look (so cute), I can’t wear a bandeau. It won’t hold up most boobs C or larger, which excludes so much of the population, but they’re featured CONSTANTLY here. Sticking a neon bra would not have the same effect. Just something to keep in mind :)

  11. 11
    July 9th, 2011 at 9:42 am

    i like
    a huge fan of the 3rd look……denim shorts seem so casual….its nice to dress them up

  12. 12
    July 9th, 2011 at 9:50 am

    @shaina: what about a good strapless bra under the bandeau top for the support you need..would that help? i don’t have that problem..haha

  13. 13
    July 9th, 2011 at 9:58 am

    great suggestions! those outfits are really cute :)

  14. 14
    July 9th, 2011 at 10:38 am

    I don’t have that same problem, but I always wear a strapless bra under bandeaus. The ones I have are pretty thin, so it just makes me feel a little more secure. I don’t know if that’s an option for you, but it could help :)

  15. 15
    July 9th, 2011 at 11:39 am

    I’m not really a huge fan of denim shorts to be honest, they are a bit unoriginal to me and most of them are super short. Though I do like that you included Toms in the first outfit!

  16. 16
    July 9th, 2011 at 12:00 pm

    These outfits are cute but I think we’ve seen way too many similar ones here on CF.

  17. 17
    July 9th, 2011 at 4:10 pm

    I love outfits 1, 2, and 3 because they are so easy to recreate out of items i already own (except for the toms…i must be the only girl who doesn’t own them haha).

    I’d like to see sheer tanks in a one item four ways article. I bought one a while ago and i’m running out of ideas on how to wear it…i’ve thrown cardigans, crop tops, and denim shirts/vests over it but now i’m kinda at a blank…ideas please?

  18. 18
    July 10th, 2011 at 9:50 am

    I really like outfits 1 and 2! Your ‘One Item, Four Ways’ posts are always something I look forward to :) great job!

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