Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Oh, Crop!

A crop top (also cropped top, belly shirt, half shirt, midriff shirt, midriff top, tummy top, short shirt, and cutoff shirt) is a T-shirt or blouse with the lower part cut off, showing off some of the abdomen. 

Thanks to Wikipedia for this wonderful definition of a crop top. Where would we be without Wiki?

Well, like it or not, the '90s are back! Short tops have been cropping up all over stores (I'm hilarious, I know), and they are being shown with ev-er-y-thing. Crop tops and jeans, crop tops and A-line skirts, crop tops and maxi skirts, crop tops and high-waisted shorts. You name it, you can probably wear it with a crop top.

In the "dress code" section of my middle school student handbook, there was a clause that explicitly stated "no exposed midriffs." I went to middle school in the early 2000's, right after the '90s crop top craze, and I remember thinking "ew, why would anybody even want to expose their midriff? Also, why is midriff such a weird word?"

Well, now it's 2014, and I've got answers. Midriff seems like it should be a compound word, right? Mid drift? Like, "my mid is so exposed that I'm catching this drift of wind." Turns out I was… well, kinda right.

According to Wikipedia, "'Midriff' is an old term in the English language, coming into use before 1000 AD. In Old English it was written as "midhrif", with the old word "hrif" literally meaning stomach; in Middle English it was "mydryf". The word fell into obsolescence after the 18th century, until it was revived in 1941 by the fashion industry partly to avoid use of the word 'belly' which many women considered undesirable in reference to their bodies, as it has connotations of obesity." Interesting, huh? Ya learn something new every day.

My personal recommendation when playing with proportions is that you don't go overboard one way or another. So if you're wearing a super short crop, don't wear it with itty-itty-bitty shorts. You don't want to look like you're in a bikini unless you're--y'know--at a pool.

My second recommendation is to be considerate about where you wear this trend. Your boss probably doesn't want to see your bare midriff or (gasp) exposed belly button when you walk into his office. If you currently attend Jarrett Middle School, the handbook likely still says "no exposed midriffs" because it may not have been updated since the 90's. I also wouldn't recommend wearing a crop top to any sort of church function because duh. And you could wear a crop top to the mall if you want, but the AC is always so cold there, so maybe it would be better if you wore a sweater over it…

But in any and all other cases: Rock the crop, guys.

Photos by my talented friend, Nick Warnock, edited by me. To see more of his edits from this shoot, hop on over to

Outfit details: Crop top//Forever 21. Black jeans//Forever 21. Brown beaded bracelets//Vintage.


  1. So cute! I'm dying to get a crop top for this summer. Love your advice. It's all about balance with the skin showing.

  2. Love the boho inspired crop top!

    ❤ Gita @

  3. Loved the little vocab lesson, so funny how words evolve and come and go with trends/society's views.
    Great photos - what a great pattern on that top!

    I have trouble with crop tops unless I'm wearing high waisted paints with them. Mainly because when I sit down or eat a lot (And I love eating) I just feel too exposed haha!

    1. Katia - I know exactly what you mean! That's part of the reason my crop is a little longer than most… I ate a burger about 10 minutes before this! Haha. :)

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