A Guide to Chinos

The mens chino, a versatile classic and a pair of trousers every man should have in their wardrobe. As a permanent fixture across the high street, it seems apt that the chino should be profiled in the run up to Christmas. With so many options to choose from it’s quite easy to miss which design, fit or colour suits you best.

So, what is the chino? Chinos are a woven pair of trousers, typically made with 100% cotton and most commonly come in khaki; but don’t worry, if khaki isn’t your colour there are plenty of other colour options to be had. The chino was originally designed for use in the military in an effort to provide trousers that were simple, durable and comfortable, not surprisingly it didn’t take long for the public to adopt the reliable fabric.

Chinos come in three basic cuts, the slim fit, wide leg and straight leg. You could say that the names speak for themselves, but here are a few secrets each fit has up their respective sleeves. The slim fit chino often creates a gap between trouser and shoe, this, along with the slender look of the fit creates the impression of increased height and is therefore perfect for the shorter gentleman. The straight leg chino can be the equivalent of a slim fit for a gentleman with more muscle, but are also complementary to a more experimental upper half style – if you’re into wild t-shirts or that infamous crazy festive jumper then they’ll create the perfect balance for you. Last but not least, the wide leg chino, a perfect style for the summer but not always best suited to a shorter gentleman – the illusion of looking shorter often pairs with this

Now for colour; the chino colour classic is khaki, though don’t mix up the Khaki style trouser with the chino style. Our tip is to keep an eye on the stitching – on the Khaki it’s visible and on the chinos it’s concealed. Chino’s come in a variety of colours, with each matching certain styles and fits respectively. The original classic light brown chino is a fantastic match for denim, a white t-shirt or a generally more casual outfit, whereas a darker navy blue chino could quite seamlessly match a suit jacket. The versatility of the chino means these matches are easily swapped, so your classic light brown could quite easily replace your navy with a suit jacket and vice versa.

How to style your chinos, you ask? One, keep it simple – a clean style is the best fit for the chino trouser. Two, remember chinos can be both formal and casual, a white shirt or a blazer are equally a match for the adaptability of the fabric and cut. Three, dress your chino up or down with shoes and accessories – a loafer always looks great with a khaki chino, as do braces or a classic fedora hat if you want to spice things up a little.

Chinos are great, that’s a given. The durability, versatility and simplicity of the style mean they can be worn almost anywhere and at any time. A staple for your wardrobe and a great match for your crazy festive jumper this Christmas.

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