It’s a trend that’s spreading like wildfire; a trend that is transforming a run-of-the-mill wardrobe staple and a trend that more than a few out there may think is utterly ghastly. Whichever way you look at it, it’s having the mother of all effects on a pair of trousers near you.
The transformation of trousers from classic wardrobe staple to look-at-me fashion statement began last season with acid bright jeans (an acquired and determinedly youthful taste) and peg-leg trousers (belted and gathered high on the waist, 1980s style, these were also far from shy and retiring). Now, pattern and print are the story and legs citywide have never been covered in so loud and proud a manner.
The autumn-hued plum (sorry, aubergine) coloured trouser is still a force to be reckoned with, but it’s positively demure compared to any number of more busy alternatives. There aren’t many things in the world to which a leopard hasn’t lent its spots and, with that in mind,a big-cat print makes an appearance across a fine pair of skinny jeans courtesy of Whistles. Marks & Spencer’s snake-print silk trousers uphold the reptile it’s most fashionable to emulate this season and all without harming a scale. Team either of these with a black top and low-key accessories to ensure the end result is sauvage, but aware of its urban surroundings, nonetheless.
Equally exotic – and destined to play a part in stylish wardrobes for more than just a single season – are bold florals, inspired not by anything spriggy and British, but by tropical climes and in colours to match. Something of a revelation for the colder season, bold autumnal wildflowers bloomed at Jil Sander while Stella McCartney’s pre-spring collection is bursting with digitally printed blooms that look as though they’ve come straight from the South Pacific. Banish all thoughts of Bobby Brown and panic not. Think instead of songstresses Beyoncé and Gwen Stefani, both of whom have been spotted recently sporting their patterned pants.
Then there’s Jessie J, who wouldn’t grace the stage in anything as quiet as a pair of block-coloured chinos. For those worried about attracting a little too much attention, meanwhile, more subtle looks are also on the agenda.
Tartan is the most stylish check to see and be seen in this winter, or opt for one of Emma Cook’s beautifully faded monochrome prints if you’re feeling more like a wallflower than a hibiscus.