The Black Pant Conundrum

MORE's fashion features editor, Susan Swimmer, blogs about the fashion matters that really count.

By: Susan Swimmer
Photograph: Photo courtesy of J.Crew

October 25, 2010


I think I’ve been looking for the perfect pair of black pants since the early 1990s. You know the ones—pants that will make me look five inches taller and 10 pounds thinner, and possibly able to give me a non-surgical butt lift at the same time. Impossible, you say? Hold that thought.

For those of you denim-ites out there who think the sun rises and sets on the right pair of jeans, hear this: Black pants are possibly the most versatile item of clothing ever invented. You can dress them up or dress them down in an instant (hello accessories!), they can just as appropriately be worn for work or on the weekends, and, when done right, they won’t stretch out and bag in all the wrong places (like, ahem, jeans). What’s more, you can wear a pair of black pants on a long distance car trip and they’ll still look decent when you reach your destination (coffee spills and all). THAT’S the kind of versatility I’m talking about, people! Oh sure, the look of the black pant has evolved over time, but this season it’s all about the skinny, cropped variety. They’re chic. They’re easy to wear. Not interested? Google Audrey Hepburn, circa Roman Holiday and you’ll get the gist. I beg of you, run do not walk to a retailer near you and buy yourself a pair (just to recap: skinny, cropped, and, you’ll thank me later, with a bit of stretch built in). Wear them with a crisp white button down shirt and a shrunken velvet blazer, wear them with a chunky knit cardigan, wear them with flats, oxfords, or ankle boots, and I DEFY you to take them off. My personal favorites of the season? The Slim Crop pant from the Gap, and the Stretch Twill Minnie pant from J. Crew.
Go! Buy! Be chic!

First Published October 25, 2010

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