delicious_scent

Super Member
1,264
Canada
Saskatchewan
Regina
I'm going to eat my words, I never thought I'd be wearing high rise trousers without a jacket, but I find myself wanting a pair.

Background information:

I dress ultra casual, rarely wear a jacket, and realized that having interesting looking trousers is a great way to stay stylish yet comfortable in the summer.

I own a pair of: cream jeans, light wash jeans, brick khakis, regular khakis, dressier khaki chinos with side tabs, light grey and cream pairs of poly/cotton side tab trousers, navy linen trousers.

Ease of care would be nice. I'd rather not have to iron the pants after every wear, and I'd want them to be machine washable.

Confirmed Details:
-Side tabs
-High Rise
-Extended hidden clasp closure
-Extended waistband
-Some combination of pleats.
-Fuller cut than what is usual on the market for OTR.

Colours/Fabrics
Any ideas on colours and fabrics? I'm trying to avoid overlap in my wardrobe. I'd say the worst fabric trousers I own are the lightweight dressier chinos that are 97% cotton/3% spandex. They lose shape very quickly and don't wrinkle elegantly like linen, and not particularly cool wearing.

The poly/cotton are surprisingly one of the best. They retain their shape, don't really stink, are fuller cut and more comfortable and airy. They are single reverse pleat and the crease basically works itself into the pleat after I wash and hang dry. Very minimal care required.

Other details/Pleats
What about the type of pleat? Single, double, reverse, forward etc.

I've also read something about slip stitch waistbands for when you're bloated at the end of the day. I'm open to suggestions and other details.

I'm mainly drawing some inspiration from these pictures if the above requires too much reading and imagination

 

Charles Dana

Honors Member
3,116
United States
California
San Francisco
I'm going to eat my words, I never thought I'd be wearing high rise trousers without a jacket, but I find myself wanting a pair.
Good!


Confirmed Details:
-Side tabs
-High Rise
-Extended hidden clasp closure
-Extended waistband
-Some combination of pleats.
-Fuller cut than what is usual on the market for OTR.
Good!

Cuffs? No cuffs? Break? (If so, how much of one?) Or no break?

Any ideas on colours?
What colors do you like?

I'd say the worst fabric trousers I own are the lightweight dressier chinos that are 97% cotton/3% spandex.
Then don't get 97% cotton/3% spandex. (It's too bad you want something that is machine washable, because tropic-weight wool would be an excellent warm-weather fabric.) Ask your tailor to recommend a fabric.

The poly/cotton [trousers] are surprisingly one of the best. They retain their shape, don't really stink, are fuller cut and more comfortable and airy. They are single reverse pleat and the crease basically works itself into the pleat after I wash and hang dry. Very minimal care required.
Then go with the poly/cotton again. Follow this principle: If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

By the way, when you say that the trousers "don't really stink," what do you mean? You must have an interesting way of complimenting your girlfriend. ("Nah, Baby, you're not THAT fat.")

What about the type of pleat? Single, double, reverse, forward etc.
What do you like? The type/number of pleats is a stylistic matter that is up to you.

I've also read something about slip stitch waistbands for when you're bloated at the end of the day. I'm open to suggestions and other details.
How bloated to you get? Perhaps you shouldn't eat your words.

I don't know about slip-stitch waistbands, but I guess many other forums members do. You should probably also ask your tailor.

I'm mainly drawing some inspiration from these [Instagram] pictures
Excellent. You're on the right track. The best thing to do, when contemplating a custom-made garment, is to look diligently for photographs of people who are wearing a garment that comes closest to what you have in mind. Then show the photos to your tailor and say something like, "This is what I want." Next, have a discussion with the tailor to set the details and, frankly, to find out if the tailor has the expertise to make what you want. Maybe he doesn't.


...if the above requires too much reading and imagination.
Yes, the photos were tremendously helpful. It was thoughtful of you to include them. Thank you for not taxing my feeble brain cells. (Though I have to confess: the part about the trousers not being "really" smelly has spoiled the generally serene mood of some of my neurotransmitters. Until you clarify, they won't quite know what it is they are supposed to transmit.)
 
Last edited:

TKI67

Super Member
1,218
United States
Texas
Austin
I agree on the deep cuff and slight break if the pants are cut quite full. A cream color is also a good look, especially with something like a Bengal stripe. I’m not a pleats person, but if you’re getting them, I’d go for double reverse pleats. Be sure to confirm the desired number of belt loops and be sure the pockets are sufficiently deep. I’ve pretty much given up on Bill’s because of shallow pockets.
 

delicious_scent

Super Member
1,264
Canada
Saskatchewan
Regina
Good!




Good!

Cuffs? No cuffs? Break? (If so, how much of one?) Or no break?



What colors do you like?



Then don't get 97% cotton/3% spandex. (It's too bad you want something that is machine washable, because tropic-weight wool would be an excellent warm-weather fabric.) Ask your tailor to recommend a fabric.



Then go with the poly/cotton again. Follow this principle: If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

By the way, when you say that the trousers "don't really stink," what do you mean? You must have an interesting way of complimenting your girlfriend. ("Nah, Baby, you're not THAT fat.")



What do you like? The type/number of pleats is a stylistic matter that is up to you.



How bloated to you get? Perhaps you shouldn't eat your words.

I don't know about slip-stitch waistbands, but I guess many other forums members do. You should probably also ask your tailor.



Excellent. You're on the right track. The best thing to do, when contemplating a custom-made garment, is to look diligently for photographs of people who are wearing a garment that comes closest to what you have in mind. Then show the photos to your tailor and say something like, "This is what I want." Next, have a discussion with the tailor to set the details and, frankly, to find out if the tailor has the expertise to make what you want. Maybe he doesn't.




Yes, the photos were tremendously helpful. It was thoughtful of you to include them. Thank you for not taxing my feeble brain cells. (Though I have to confess: the part about the trousers not being "really" smelly has spoiled the generally serene mood of some of my neurotransmitters. Until you clarify, they won't quite know what it is they are supposed to transmit.)
I didn't give cuffs much thought. If I do a "wash and hang dry", would the cuffs turn into a floppy mess, or retain shape?

Likely a kissing break. It'll have side tabs and no belt, so it may sag a big to a half break. Though I've never owned a pair of true high rise trousers so I have no idea.

I've actually wondered about washing wool in the machine after reading Peak & Pine posts. I wonder what's the worst that could happen. Will it truly mess up the fabric?

Tropical wool does sound pretty appealing.

Will keep the poly/cotton and the classic mantra of "if it ain't broke..." in mind.

Hahahahaha, you got me there. I should have dropped the "really" and just mention stink. I was reminded of synthetics retaining stinky smells, so I thought it'd be useful to mention that there. There truly was 0 malodorous stench with those trousers, so I was pleasantly surprised.

For pleats, I don't know what I like yet. I've read that particular pleat stylings offer cleaner lines.

I get quite bloated, I eat quite a bit of fibre and large meals during dinner.

Good point on figuring out whether the tailor has the capability of making what I want.

As for photos, admittedly I'm a more a visual learner, so I knew there must be someone out there on the board who is like myself. Pictures make things easier.
British khaki / tan cotton twill with two inch cuffs and a "Mid-Atlantic" (1/2) break?

The rest all depends on your build really.
Will keep that in mind, british khaki sounds appealing. Break is not set in stone for me with a fuller cut.

With narrower hem trousers, I only go no break or else they drape terribly.

I'm of average height, thin guy, but my hips are naturally bigger than my chest/shoulders.
I agree on the deep cuff and slight break if the pants are cut quite full. A cream color is also a good look, especially with something like a Bengal stripe. I’m not a pleats person, but if you’re getting them, I’d go for double reverse pleats. Be sure to confirm the desired number of belt loops and be sure the pockets are sufficiently deep. I’ve pretty much given up on Bill’s because of shallow pockets.
What are your thoughts on cuffs for trousers that you wash? Would it be easy to maintain?

Will keep cream in mind as well. Why double reverse pleats?

No belt loops sir, side tabs only. Oh yes, I require deep pockets too.
 

TKI67

Super Member
1,218
United States
Texas
Austin
I didn't give cuffs much thought. If I do a "wash and hang dry", would the cuffs turn into a floppy mess, or retain shape?

Likely a kissing break. It'll have side tabs and no belt, so it may sag a big to a half break. Though I've never owned a pair of true high rise trousers so I have no idea.

I've actually wondered about washing wool in the machine after reading Peak & Pine posts. I wonder what's the worst that could happen. Will it truly mess up the fabric?

Tropical wool does sound pretty appealing.

Will keep the poly/cotton and the classic mantra of "if it ain't broke..." in mind.

Hahahahaha, you got me there. I should have dropped the "really" and just mention stink. I was reminded of synthetics retaining stinky smells, so I thought it'd be useful to mention that there. There truly was 0 malodorous stench with those trousers, so I was pleasantly surprised.

For pleats, I don't know what I like yet. I've read that particular pleat stylings offer cleaner lines.

I get quite bloated, I eat quite a bit of fibre and large meals during dinner.

Good point on figuring out whether the tailor has the capability of making what I want.

As for photos, admittedly I'm a more a visual learner, so I knew there must be someone out there on the board who is like myself. Pictures make things easier.

Will keep that in mind, british khaki sounds appealing. Break is not set in stone for me with a fuller cut.

With narrower hem trousers, I only go no break or else they drape terribly.

I'm of average height, thin guy, but my hips are naturally bigger than my chest/shoulders.

What are your thoughts on cuffs for trousers that you wash? Would it be easy to maintain?

Will keep cream in mind as well. Why double reverse pleats?

No belt loops sir, side tabs only. Oh yes, I require deep pockets too.
I am a Trad of the early to mid-60s east coast variety. So all of my pants, other than shorts, 501s, and dinner suit, have a 1 3/4” cuff. They are all either all wool or all cotton. I iron the cotton ones myself, and the cuffs aren’t hard to keep in order, but bear in mind that my species of Trad is known to be at ease in un-ironed khakis. My only thought on the pleats is either to go big or don’t go. As for washing wool rather than sending it out, I was instructed on washing uniforms in the USN. The Navy uses fairly heavy wool, and it was fine. I’d be more nervous about tropical worsted, especially around the stitching for the cuffs. Of course, I’ve never tried it. I have, however, washed other things labeled dry clean only (corduroys, sweaters, etc.) and, so far, have no regrets.
 

Matt S

Connoisseur
7,795
United States
NY
New York
If you want to avoid all ironing, don’t get pleats. They need ironing to look good.

But if you’re going for pleats, forward pleats look trimmer and are more slimming than the Italian-style reverse pleats.
 

Matt S

Connoisseur
7,795
United States
NY
New York
OK, Here is a thought...

When I was a 34 waist, these were my day-to-day, high-waisted, pleated, and cuffed khakis:

[/URL]

Why not pick-up something like these, cheap, off of eBay as a dry-run/proof-of-concept to give you a base-line from which you can decide what suits/appeals to you in terms of pleats and fullness of cut before you commit to having anything tailored.

Might be worth it?
I used to wear these too, but they have quite a full cut. It was great when I had a 34” waist and a 43” seat. Thankfully I have more reasonable proportions now. But pleats don’t have to mean such a full cut. I have bespoke forward pleat trousers that are very slim.
 

delicious_scent

Super Member
1,264
Canada
Saskatchewan
Regina
I am a Trad of the early to mid-60s east coast variety. So all of my pants, other than shorts, 501s, and dinner suit, have a 1 3/4” cuff. They are all either all wool or all cotton. I iron the cotton ones myself, and the cuffs aren’t hard to keep in order, but bear in mind that my species of Trad is known to be at ease in un-ironed khakis. My only thought on the pleats is either to go big or don’t go. As for washing wool rather than sending it out, I was instructed on washing uniforms in the USN. The Navy uses fairly heavy wool, and it was fine. I’d be more nervous about tropical worsted, especially around the stitching for the cuffs. Of course, I’ve never tried it. I have, however, washed other things labeled dry clean only (corduroys, sweaters, etc.) and, so far, have no regrets.
I'm on board with deep cuffs, I've a pair with 2" cuffs. For pleats, I will ask for deeper pleats as well.

Thanks for the tip for stitching around cuffs. I'll ask my tailor more about it in terms of whether washing is a terrible idea or not, and reinforced stitching.
If you want to avoid all ironing, don’t get pleats. They need ironing to look good.

But if you’re going for pleats, forward pleats look trimmer and are more slimming than the Italian-style reverse pleats.
The pair in the OP that is poly/cotton with a reverse pleat still looks great even without ironing.

I thought the exact same thing.

Then Despos, a tailor from Styleforum, dropped this on me, which is why I'm confused on forward vs. reverse.

It's the opposite. Reverse pleat is pulling the cloth from the hip/outseam towards the the fly and under the pleat. This makes the area from pleat to hip look flatter. Because the cloth on regular pleats from the hip to the pleat fold over the pleat it makes the area from the pleat to the hip look fuller. The front area between the pleats looks hollow. Regular pleat has the cloth on a plane from the fly, flowing the cloth under the pleat. I think this its why regular pleats rarely fall straight. They tend to create a grin shape like this ( ). Tends to make your hips look wider as the direction of pleat is at an angle, widening towards the hip. The first post/picture of this thread shows this. I would not be happy if I cut forward pleats that opened/hung like that. This is one reason I don't like the regular pleat look. From the front you are looking into the fold of the pleat. Reverse pleats open to the side. When you use the front pockets on regular pleats you pull the top cloth over to the side and the pleat opens. On reverse the cloth pulls open from under the pleat. Different aesthetic/function.
My objective in fitting a pleat is to have the crease open as low as possible. The turn of the crease from laying flat against the body to the crease line. Hate those pleats that open immediately just below the waistband. This is controlled by the angle of how the pleat folds and has a wider range of options on reverse pleats than regular. Think that's why regular pleats look/open so differently on various body types. This explanation isn't easy to grasp because it's a visual thing and harder to verbalize.

Another decision is pockets styles with pleats. Forward/regular pleats usually have on seam pockets. My least favorite since they are made on a curve of the hip and the opening is set back farther than other pockets. You have to reach back a bit to use them. Have seen 1/4 top pockets on regular pleats but looks odd to me. Reverse pleats can pair with 1/4 top or what I prefer is a single pipe. Also know as offset or jetted pocket. The beauty of the single pipe is it is not sewn into any seam at waistband or side seam and doesn't put stress on the seams. It's free floating and strong. It also tends to disappear on the trouser front, doesn't gap open and lays flat on the hip.

WLT; that inverted pleat was popular with Armani and Zanella when Zanella was famous for 4 pleats on each front panel. I agree with the point of needing a full/loose cut. It breaks down to a single reverse pleat with an added regular pleat that meet at the waist band. It's a novelty. Good thing is if you don't like it you can have the side pleat moved and change the style.

Tweedyprof; Steed cuts a very good regular pleat trouser. Have seen them on clients and they look really good.
This is the best explanation I can think of to your question about cloth weight. If you fold a piece of regular paper that you might use in a printer you get the fold to lie flat. If you fold a heavier weight of cardboard, nor a corrugated box, you see the fold expanding and not staying closed. I see this when cutting heavy cloth and pleats. Just the density of the cloth weight makes the fronts look bulky and full. The cloth tends to push out and not stay put more than lighter cloth. Light weight cloths take some experience to handle as they can "shift" when cutting or sewing. Mid weights cloths are easier to handle. As the cloth gets heavier it loses suppleness and is sometimes difficult to shape and sew as it has body from the density and wants to do it's own thing

View this as an OP/ED, not a text book explanation.
OK, Here is a thought...

When I was a 34 waist, these were my day-to-day, high-waisted, pleated, and cuffed khakis:


Why not pick-up something like these, cheap, off of eBay as a dry-run/proof-of-concept to give you a base-line from which you can decide what suits/appeals to you in terms of pleats and fullness of cut before you commit to having anything tailored.

Might be worth it?
This is a great idea, very good price.

The poly/cotton reverse pleat trousers I own are what are also inspiring this thread, so I do have a base-line to go off of. I know that single reverse pleat is a safe option to go for.

When you said 34 waist, do you mean your pants size, the narrowest part of your waist, or the widest part of your waist?
 

Charles Dana

Honors Member
3,116
United States
California
San Francisco
I didn't give cuffs much thought. If I do a "wash and hang dry", would the cuffs turn into a floppy mess, or retain shape?
They will become partially inverted. It will take only a few moments to straighten them out by hand.

I've actually wondered about washing wool in the machine after reading Peak & Pine posts. I wonder what's the worst that could happen. Will it truly mess up the fabric?
I think Peak & Pine washes his woolen garments in a tub and agitates them with a (presumably clean) toilet plunger. (But if the garments are really soiled, he agitates the hell out of them by talking politics. Works every time.)

Hahahahaha, you got me there. I should have dropped the "really" and just mention stink. I was reminded of synthetics retaining stinky smells, so I thought it'd be useful to mention that there. There truly was 0 malodorous stench with those trousers, so I was pleasantly surprised.
Thank you for the clarification. Now my brain cells can resume their customary state of torpor. And are they ever relieved! They loathe being roused.

For pleats, I don't know what I like yet. I've read that particular pleat stylings offer cleaner lines.
I've heard that inward-facing pleats are "cleaner." I have not personally verified this, but I prefer them over outward-facing pleats.
 

delicious_scent

Super Member
1,264
Canada
Saskatchewan
Regina
They will become partially inverted. It will take only a few moments to straighten them out by hand.



I think Peak & Pine washes his woolen garments in a tub and agitates them with a (presumably clean) toilet plunger. (But if the garments are really soiled, he agitates the hell out of them by talking politics. Works every time.)



Thank you for the clarification. Now my brain cells can resume their customary state of torpor. And are they ever relieved! They loathe being roused.



I've heard that inward-facing pleats are "cleaner." I have not personally verified this, but I prefer them over outward-facing pleats.
The bolded made me laugh, thank you for that.

It sounds like I should talk to my tailor and flat out ask him what he has the most experience in and what he is comfortable doing in regards to forward vs. reverse pleats.
 
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