Wearing a tunic or short dress over skinnies and leggings is one of my favorite looks as I find it an easy, comfortable, flattering and often very stylish look to wear. When you check the What I wore section on this site you will find numerous examples.

This outfit formula can both be worn in a dressy way as well as casually chic.

My look of today consists of a short silk dress I found at the Vivienne Tam sale.

I have worn this dress without pants as well in the evening but my favorite way of wearing it is with either black or cream skinnies. The cropped skinnies are from Zara.

vivienne tam short silk dress worn over Zara skinnies | 40plusstyle.com

I could not resist taking a picture with this fabulous car. You really don’t see many of these in Singapore.

how to wear a dress over pants | 40plusstyle.com

Judith (The Style Crone) is also a great fan of the tunic over skinnies look. It is one of her signature outfits, proving that this look has no age limit. Today’s outfit also shows that you don’t have to surrender your waist either (as I did above).  I love how Judith mixes the chic (hat and dress) with the casual (jean jacket and skinnies) and created this really casually chic look which is perfect for a stroll in the park.

Judith wearing a dress and jacket over leggings | 40plusstyle.com

Kay (Polyvore) created 2 versions with leggings and printed dresses.

casual chic with tunic sover pants | 40plusstyle.com

Lorraine is looking lovely with her striped tunic worn over skinny jeans and cropped trousers.

Lorraine wearing striped tunics over trousers | 40plusstyle.com

Sunny (home where story begins) is looking fab in her Old Navy leggings with a uniquely patterned Donna Morgan tunic. It is further accessorized with a bold Indian scarf, jean jacket, imitation Prada bag, nude flats and jewelry.

Sunny wearing a dress over leggings | 40plusstyle.com

I absolutely love Greetje’s (No fear of Fashion) Acne tunic that she loves to combine with big bold necklaces. she also looks great with colored tunics.

Greetje wearing her beloved Acne tunic | 40plusstyle.com

Greetje wearing skinnies with a bright tunic | 40plusstyle.com

Ana (Mrs American Made) loves to wear her printed tunics with skinnies and long boots.

Ana wearing tunics with jeans | 40plusstyle.com Ana wearing printed tunic over black pants | 40plusstyle.com

Daenel (Living Outside the Stacks) gives the look a bohemian vibe showing that this outfit formula can look equally good worn with wide pants.

wearing tunics over pants with a bohemian vibe | 40plusstyle.com

A few tips on how to wear short dresses and tunics with pants

  • Pay attention to proportion. There are no clear-cut rules although the 1/3-2/3 principle can help. Shorter women usually look better with shorter tunics and dresses. Trust your instinct when you look in the mirror.
  • The look is easiest to pull of with a wider short dress that rests on the middle of your upper legs. However, other options can work well too like longer peplums (see Greetje’s look) or longer dresses (see Judith’s look).
  • You can surrender your waist or accent it.
  • There are just so many options with this look that it is difficult to give clear-cut guidelines. What I would encourage you to do is just to play with it and have fun. Try a few combinations from your closet and see if it works. You may just be pleasantly surprised!

Thanks everyone for joining in this challenge!

Do you like to to wear the tunics / short dress over pants formula? Which is your favorite look from the above?