Hello again gents! This is a continuation of my series on how a young man can up his style game to a more appropriate level in a professional setting.
If you're still in school or maybe even if you finished a while ago, you're wardrobe likely consists of jeans, lots and lots of jeans. While there is nothing wrong with jeans in particular, they are inherently casual. Even worse is if they are ultra baggy jeans like this:
This look simply won't work. Even if its not to this extreme, here are some problems inherent with ill-fitted jeans:
- They make your legs look shorter and stumpier than they really are.
- This in turn leads to looking shorter
- If you're sagging, no one wants to see your underwear (shudder).
- Running away from the cops just got harder 😃
Here is a better alternative:
Chinos: Another versatile classic.
Chinos have there origins in the military and have been popularized in the 20th century while still being a staple in the modern man's wardrobe. They are a happy go between that fits in the middle of dress pants and jeans. This in turn gives the wearer more options than the other 2 standard options.
Let me tell you why:
- Because of there interchangeability,
- They can be dressed up or dressed down
- Chinos in their neutral colors (gray, navy and sand) serve as a blank canvas to build your outfit.
- Get them in bold colors (ex. bright red or pink) for a more fashion forward look especially suitable in the Spring/Summer months.
Like all other pieces of clothing, fit is king. Make sure they are slim fitting and of the proper length. As a rule of thumb, a half break works for most men where the hem of the pants touches the shoe and creates a slight fold.
Once you have the fit nailed down, here comes the fun part! Chinos can be played with and experimented from a suit jacket over a shirt and tie (probably interview appropriate in many settings in the American West), to a shirt and v-neck sweater in the office and all the way down to just a polo (or maybe a T-shirt) in a casual setting (or golfing if that's your thing).
Here is some inspiration:
From left to right: Dressed down, "Officewear", Fashion forward, Dressed Up
The Takeaway: Having only jeans ain't gonna cut it in the business world. Chino pants will serve you much better as a durable workhorse at work and at play due to its versatility and interchangeability.
Note: If you are going for a strict conservative look, its best to avoid exposure of the ankles and to keep the pant length at a half break.
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