Finding the perfect work pants has got to be one of the more difficult style challenges. I prefer my pants to be very form fitting, basically a denim/legging fit, otherwise I just look kind of stumpy. The other day, I stopped into several stores that are known for their workwear pants: Express, JCrew, Banana Republic, and White House Black Market. I was on the hunt for a lighter color pair of pants, in a taupe or warm neutral. I tried on so. Many. Pants. (I considered it research both for you and for me) and I was irked at how many pants claimed and looked on the model to be slim or even legging fit, and were anything but! I don’t know if I just have small calves, but they would fit right on the top, but then look baggy past the knees.
I had the most amazing success at White House Black Market!! I tried on the slim crop and they weren’t for me. However, the ultra-slimming skinny pants are just amazing. They fit so similar to my favorite LOFT denim leggings. I thought my regular size was great for a longer fit, and a size up in petite to be a more cropped fit on me. These pants currently come in black, teal, and navy. If I had needed dark-colored work pants, I would have gotten my regular size in that specific style. However, I did find the skinny ankle fit in a utility style and lovely taupe color in the sale section. I think these are so beautiful and definitely work appropriate. Hopefully they bring them back in this color in the coming seasons.
Below is a quick review of the other stores and pants I tried on. I only tried on the skinnier fits at every store, because that’s what I was looking for.
The Express Legging pants looked great in the marketing photos, but were definitely not skinny on me.
At Banana Republic I tried on the Devon and the Sloan pants. Sloan was a no-go for what I was in the market for – legs were not tapered enough. The Devon was baggy at the ankles in regular sizing, but were borderline ok in petite sizing. They’re quite high-waisted as well. I didn’t end up getting them.
At J.Crew I tried on both the Martie and Cameron pants. Neither of them were skinny fit (they don’t claim to be though, they are slim crop fit). The Cameron pants fit really nice at the top and thighs, and I was just enamored by the heather saddle color that they had. I ended up getting the 00R in the Cameron. From my research, it is rare to find pants that are a lovely warm, yet neutral, color (not the standard darks, and not straight up khaki). Because they have a seam up the back, I was able to take in that seam with my sewing machine easily and make them more skinny fit. See my previous blog post here for how I tailored them myself. The before photos are similar to what the Express Legging and Banana Republic Sloan pants looked like on me.
I’m excited to dress up a little bit more for my FDA job, and having pants that aren’t jeans will definitely enable me to mix and match more. Thanks so much for reading! x
photos by the incredible Eliza Niforatos