Five Plus One is our weekly series of buyer’s guides. We pick a specific category and dig up five great options along with one that’s a little outside the norm.
Pleated pants aren’t for everyone, but they are a great classic style and can help to add some variety to anyone’s wardrobe. There are two basic styles of pleats: forward and reverse.
The former style features pleats that are folded from the outside to the inside, which is the more traditional style; they create an all around slimming silhouette, but are rarely seen these days. Reverse pleats, where the pleats are folded outward, do not have this same slimming effect but are much more common these days. That said, we’ve found several pairs from each style philosophy, so this will have a bit of something for everyone.
1) Unis: Davis Pleated Chino
Unis is one of the more popular brands for chinos these days, so it come as no surprise that they have a great pleated pant pattern in their Davis cut. It features single, reverse facing pleats that line up perfectly with the belt loops and create a clean, vertical line down the front of the leg. The Davis features a mid/high rise with a bit of room in the thigh and a substantial taper below the knee. They are constructed from Italian fabric in Portugal.
2) Sage de Cret: Double Pleat Trousers in Beige
Sage de Cret is one of the the great brands carried by No Man Walks Alone that is seriously underrepresented elsewhere. Their Double Pleat Trousers feature double, forward facing pleats, two vertically oriented buttons at the waistband, and two back pockets (one buttoned and one slit). They are made in Japan from a lightweight cotton fabric, making these the perfect pair for this Spring.
Available for $255 from No Man Walks Alone.
3) Knickerbocker Mfg.: Central Pant in Black
There are a lot of different styles of pants that feature pleats, and it’s great to see Knickerbocker embracing looser-fitting pleated pants with their Central Pant. The 8.5 oz. bull denim trouser has many old world accents, such as the vintage loom produced labels and visible hunting-button closure on the waistband. Despite the more traditional fit of these trousers they do still feature a bit of a taper below the thigh, so you won’t be fully retiring from more modern pant fits.
Available for $198 from Knickerbocker.
4) Older Brother: Pleated Trousers in Hibiscus
Older Brother is another brand that has chosen to utilize roomier, more classic cuts for their Pleated Trousers, but what really makes this pair standout is its unique fabric. It starts with a Japanese cotton twill that is dyed in-house with hibiscus and cochineal to produce a truly unique color. These pants feature a single, inward facing pleat that extends a long way down the leg, which produces a thinning waist while allowing for a baggy leg.
Available for $295 from Older Brother.
5) Tomorrowland: Gabardine Pleated Pants in Beige
Tomorrowland makes some one-of-a-kind pieces such as their Gabardine Pleated Pants, which features large, single reverse pleats, a roomy thigh, and a tapered leg opening. Although not a true chino fabric, the 56%/44% cotton/wool blend of these gabardine trousers is breathable, lightweight, and casual, and makes for a fantastic pair of everyday trousers.
Available for $322 from Unionmade Goods.
Plus One – Officine Generale: Twill Chinos on Olive
If you are only going to own one of pleated trousers make it Officine Generale’s Twill Chinos. They are a slim fitting pair of pants featuring double, forward facing pleats, a custom fabric belt, and sewn-in cuffs. While pleats still might not be for everyone this pair does a good job at showing just how versatile this construction detail can be, and how attractive an article of clothing can be that utilizes it correctly.
Available for $280 from Mr. Porter.