25 denim shorts that won’t make you look like a 21 year old at a music festival

Denim Shorts Andrea Michelle Fox in Flats

By Andrea Michelle

Summer ’93 Iggy Pop and Sonic Youth were headlining The Big Day Out. It was a steaming hot day in my home-town Adelaide when I jumped into my boyfriend’s car ready to hit the music festival wearing my favourite denim shorts. And despite the fact that they didn’t show anything remotely resembling a curve of butt-cheek like the ones often worn by 21 year olds today, he raised his eyebrow with disapproval at the length of them.

Unwilling to be dictated about my fashion choices by a man even at that age, I shrugged, told him to get over it and “Gas it!” to The BDO before The Clouds hit the stage.

And while my love affair with him didn’t last much longer, two decades later my love affair with denim shorts is still going strong.

One in three women* say shorts form the base for their summer wardrobes – and I’m certainly one of them. From being able to sit cross-legged on the grass at a picnic to kicking a ball with my boys, it’s all that much easier in shorts. And blue denim shorts are my particular staple because they’re durable and manage to look clean regardless of the action that’s taken place that day.

But finding a pair that don’t make you look like you’re about to push into a mosh pit and/or that cover your butt-cheeks adequately can be a bit of a challenge. So I’ve done the legwork for you:


Shopping Tips:

  • A looser boyfriend cut is more forgiving on your thighs when you sit down – you don’t want your denim shorts to be cutting into your legs because a) it’ll hurt, and b) it’ll make them look chunky (even though they probably aren’t).
  • High-waisted denim shorts are great for ensuring you don’t accidentally flash more than you’d like when you bend over, plumber-style.
  • Cuffs add instant polish to denim shorts, which can then make an easy day-to-night transition simply by adding heels and something sparkly up top (like the Trelise Cooper top in my pics above).
  • Cut-offs have a breezy nonchalance about them that’s perfect for lazy summer days. And don’t be afraid to DIY your own – my all-time favourite denim shorts were made out of an old pair of Levis. Just be sure to trim them back gradually until you reach the length that best flatters your legs.


For styling tips, check out this post from last summer.


And as for music festivals? It’s been years since I’ve been to one, because it all seemed too epic when the boys were young, but now I wouldn’t rule it out. Only problem is when I look at the line ups these days I don’t recognise half of the bands. But at least I’d know what to wear. 😉


What was your most memorable music festival? And anyone planning to go to one this summer? 

*The Fox in Flats survey on motherhood and fashion. 

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