Breaking The Sweatpant Fashion Taboo
November 4, 2010 2 Comments
With the exception of white socks with dress pants, I can’t think of any fashion faux pas over the past two decades worse than wearing sweatpants anywhere outside of the gym. It did however hit the runway big time this past year, with almost all of the big fashion houses showcasing their offerings on both the men’s and women’s catwalks. This was a trend many of us did not seen coming.
So the rules are simple. Sweatpants are athletic-to-casual wear. Careful dressing them up and don’t show up in a job interview or business meeting with them on please – but you’re smart enough to know that. Think weekend wear, running errands, grabbing a coffee, or for après-ski. Your sweatpants should be made primarily of thick cotton or cotton blend – no nylon, no zippers. There should be an elastic at the waist and/or drawstring and the pant cuff should follow the waist with an elastic or drawstring for a tapered look.
Stay neutral. Wear them in dark black/blue/brown, shades of jersey grey, or white/off-white. Stay away from the pastels, let your patterned or coloured sweater do the talking. For best results, tuck the cuff into your lace-up boots or wear with designer sneakers. You can experiment with the pants in our outside of the socks and weather permitting, even try pulling the cuff up to just below the knee or bottom of your calf. Dock shoes and a Lacoste or Polo shirt for spring/summer is also a nice look.
Commonwealth Utilities have come up with a beautiful, albeit expensive sturdy pair of white sweatpants that they’re calling motorcycle pants. The thing I like about these $425 (*gasp*) sweatpants is that they come with belt loops and a thick pant cuff, allowing you to dress your sweatpants up a bit. Dolce & Gabbana’s long john underwear styled Italian sweatpants are another option. The underwear look is a bit of a gamble for the design duo. Wearing sweatpants out and about is one thing, long underwear – significantly more ballsy. German designer Mucha also has some nice sweatpants worth investigating at around $240. If you’re looking to save money, give $59.95 Lanvin for H&M (see my post) or $140 Home Alone sweatpants by Scotch & Soda a try. Online store SSENSE.com also has tons of options here.