The Model and Me: Mela Purdie spring-summer 2017 | Zambezee Boutique

The Model and Me: Mela Purdie spring-summer 2017

Nikki Parkinson Fashion, The Model and Me 30 Comments

I’m very much stepping out of my pant comfort zone this fashion season. The wide-legged culotte is everywhere.

It’s a pant style that I’ve very much steered cleared of most of my entire adult life. So why the change in attitude?

I honestly don’t know. All I know is that I’m always open to giving my style comfort zone a little nudge beyond its current limits.

In recent years, that nudging has seen me embrace distressed jeans/shorts and off-the-shoulder anything. Those things no longer feel like a stretch to me. They’re very much a part of my everyday style.

So, when Zambezee Boutique‘s Natalie Hanley contacted me to see if I was up for trying out this new Mela Purdie pant style (from the Mela Purdie spring-summer 2017 collection), I hesitated for a second before agreeing to push my current pant-wearing boundaries.

And I’m so glad I did. 

The model

Mela Purdie tie pant | Mela Purdie soft shirt in poet's stripe | Zambezee Boutique

Mela Purdie tie pant | Mela Purdie soft shirt in poet’s stripe

and me

Mela Purdie shirt and pant; FRANKiE4 Footwear Cate mule | spring-summer 2017 | Zambezee Boutique

Mela Purdie shirt and pant (I’m in size 14 in both) | FRANKiE4 Footwear CATE mule

The key to making this pant style work is that we need to see a hint of where your waist sits. I’m not a full tuck kind of girl but the half tuck works in its place. What this does is balance out the volume of fabric in the leg so as not to “block” you.

The flat front of these pants is super flattering. I chose to just loosely tie the belt rather than a bow as is on the model. They are true to size. The pants are long (I’m 166cm) so I rolled the hem up into a cuff for these photos but will get them altered so that they sit grazing the top of my ankle. This is the ideal length for a flattering finish. 

A mule, like I’m wearing, is a great style for wearing with culottes, as is a wedge, platform or flat slide. Unless you’re Nina Proudman, it doesn’t really work with a boot.

The pant is a stretch cotton, so is super comfortable to wear – comfort, versatitly and wearability are trademarks of the Mela Purdie label. These are clothes that are designed to travel with you. Every time I travel (whether it’s an over-nighter or three weeks overseas), you’ll always find me including and wearing Mela pieces. They also look good and remain looking “as new” for years. Just ask me … my oldest Mela piece is more than 10 years old.

This is especially the case for any of my Mela pieces made from the label’s trademark technical fabric, as this shirt is. The technical fabric is man-made but is breathable and stunningly soft and luxe to wear. Apart from looking great, this is a fabric that you can pop in the washing machine, hang out to (quickly) dry and wear again without ironing. Each pieces rolls up to take up minimal suitcase space. And each piece can be dressed up or down.

I love the shade of blue in this shirt and will also wear it back with black or white pants, shorts or skirt. 

Please note, I know this label is not for everyone’s budget. It’s for women who wish to buy fewer pieces each season, but buy knowing that those pieces will still look just as good for years to come. It’s very ok if you’re not that woman and it’s ok if you are. 

So tell me, are you already on board the culotte pant-style train? A fan of Mela Purdie?

The Model and Me: Mela Purdie spring-summer 2017 | Zambezee Boutique
* These garments were gifted to me for editorial consideration. Full disclosure policy here. I am an ambassador for FRANKiE4 Footwear.

  • Catherine Willmott

    To be totally honest….that bow makes the look for me.
    I would have worn that look in my 40’s …in fact did .
    Preference the lighter shoes too.

  • Bee

    looks good. I like the black shoe. Culottes not for me

  • Kym O’Gorman

    Wow, they look so much better on you than on the model. When I saw your social media posts with just the model, I thought NO WAY. But you look fantastic. I love the way you’ve styled the outfit
    .

  • It is a stone colour – the model/studio photo is probably the best indication of the colour.

  • I never was a fan either but now have a couple of cheapie pairs that I’m totally crushing on. Love the model AND you.

  • Kathryn

    I love these pants, but they are not for me. You look great in them, and I love the top. BLUE say no more! I would wear that! Isn’t the model pretty, and those shoes are like some I had in the 70s 🙂

  • tgchi13

    Wow! Too bad the model didn’t look as good in this outfit as you do!

  • Tammy

    Love , love , love Mela Purdie . You look great in this outfit

  • They look fabulous on you! I love a wide legged pant.

  • I’m so glad to see you in these!! I’ve been thinking about a pair of similar pants – I love the way they looked on the model but was unsure if I could pull them off – it’s more about how to deal with the waistline for me, (I don’t generally wear much tucked in) than the length of the pant – I’ll definitely give them a try now I’ve seen you in them – you look gorge! x

    • It’s definitely all about working the waistline which is why the half-tuck works for my torso and body shape!

  • Kelly

    Funnily enough despite all the comments from others with similar issues (short and with weight around my middle) I have found cropped wide leg culottes the most flattering pants on me by a long way – I have 3 versions now. The bow is not for me but these pants look right up my alley. I have come to realise if you want great fitting clothes, it is likely there will need to be some adjustment and hemming the pants to hit the most flattering point is a small thing to fix. I am off to check them out!

    • I totally agree Kelly, it is all about the adjustment if there is a style you like but it’s not working for you off the rack. That’s why I’ll be getting these taken up. At full length (uncuffed) they’re not flattering on me at all.

  • I gave wide leg pants a try last season, but felt that carrying all of my weight around the middle they were not the best look for me.

    • Generally I’m the same but these sat better on my tummy. The half tuck was key for me.

  • Johanne Taylor

    I recently purchased some black wide leg crop pants from MP. Experience has taught me that if they style is a little out of my comfort zone I should go for black or navy otherwise it’s just too much of a stretch for me to get much wear out of the piece. Alternatively, mad prints (like Gorman) need to be in very simple shapes.

    • That’s a great tip Johanne … and glad you like your black wide leg cropped pants.

  • Jacqueline Mitrovits

    Nice combo on you Nikki. Jury is still out for me & culottes?? We shall see?? I love Mela clothing even though I only have a couple of pieces they are quality over quantity.

    • Yes to quality over quantity. The jury is very fine being out – it can be a big step. It was for me!

  • Jess Bradshaw

    Such a stunning combination! They look great on you, Nikki! I would love to try them. I am thin and tall so I worry about whether they would suit me or not. I love the tied bow at the front.

    • Thin and tall is great for this look as you can create shape with a fully tucked shirt.

  • Lisa Mckenzie

    The culottes look great on you Nikki,I don’t think I could wear them as I’m very short 161cm thigh I do love the look on others Xx

    • It would be about getting the right length, Lisa, so getting them altered. I’m a never-say-never kind of person. x

  • I think you can make anything look fabulous Nikki. I like the way you’ve styled this outfit. Culottes aren’t for me though. I have long legs and find the shorter length doesn’t suit me. And often they have a belt at the waist which adds bulk to my middle. I love a wide, full length pant, but wary of how a shorter wide leg style looks on my frame. I love the tie waist on the model. It looks so sophisticated.

    • I think if they graze the ankle they can work … it’s if they go higher, yes.