Matches Fashion, Mr Porter
The woollen trouser. For most, a rather outdated image clouds the mind; an itchy, sweaty, chunky pair of tweed trousers. Most likely paired with some kind of knitted sweater (probably wool as well) and a soft pink shirt. Best teamed with a discussion on real estate opportunities in Barnes and how you’re prepping for the next Henley hunting season.
Well, let us all thank the fashion gods, because that is no longer the case for the wool trouser. They’ve bid their Windsor family farewell and have become independent, residing now in a Parisian district somewhere on the river. The wool trouser should be considered individually, not as part of a suit or knitted-sweater combo. It can be adventurous, pleated, playful and oversized. Not slim, tailored and hoicked up by some banker-boy braces handed down by your Grandfather. Fabrics are now blended, mixing the positive characteristics of wool with the comfort of cotton, softness of cashmere or breathability of rayon.
The pandemic has thrown us all into a jersey-sweater chasm of comfort, and tailoring has taken a much-deserved sabbatical as a result. It went to teach surfing in LA. It relaxed, had some fun, learnt a thing or too and has now returned to spread its wisdom. It is no longer rigid in concept and formalities as it once was; fabrics have softened and silhouettes are more creative. Much the same has happened with the woollen trouser. Work wear brands like Albam, Folk and Universal Works almost always have a relaxed wool trouser in their collection, slightly cropped with an elasticated waist – easy to throw on when the weather gets bitter. Luxury fashion houses like Prada, Giorgio Armani and Vuitton are more playful; oversized or flared, extra-large pleats contorting the traditional trouser shape to make it contemporary and fun. But most importantly, brands like Jacquemus, Jil Sanders and Bode are styling wool trousers into their collections in a way that is relaxed and simple but stylish.
A slightly oversized pair of floaty-trousers stacking on your favourite pair of sneakers (done correctly, we might add) is all good brother. It no longer looks lazy and there is nothing we like more than when styling is made easy. To make things even easier for you dear sir, we have picked our favourite pairs of winter-ready wool trousers.
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Blue Blue Japan
These black wool trousers from Bode pay homage to a 19th-century wagon-building workshop in Cincinnati, Ohio, which often finished its commissions with hand-engraved fauna and flora. But to you and me they are just a cool pair of trousers, and that’s fine.
Black Wool Trousers, £710, mrporter.com
Uniqlo x Jil Sanders
Uniqlo and Jil Sanders are back with another curated collection of effortlessly cool basics. These wool blend trousers are a moody, festive shade of dark brown. Perfect for Christmas alone, thanks Bojo. Hurry, this collection doesn’t wait for nobody.
+J Wool Blend Relaxed Fit Tapered Trousers, £60, uniqlo.com
Made from a soft virgin wool and mohair-blend patterned in a classic pinstripe with a retro wide-leg cut. Although typically seen in big 80s suits, pinstripe can be also be styled playfully with chunky V-neck knit and T shirt and white sneakers.
Wide-Leg Pinstriped Virgin Wool and Mohair-Blend Trousers, £640, mrporter.com
Dolce & Gabbana
Cropped or stacked, you make the call. Having been trained at Central Saint Martins, Edward Crutchley makes a mean trouser. With a check consisting of amazing soft greens, greys and browns, you will find yourself often reaching for these this winter.
Checked Straight-Leg Wool Trousers, £608, matchesfashion.com
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