How To Wear Corduroy

How To Wear Corduroy

Once made for kings, then known as the poor man's velvet, corduroys have had a tough life. From the late 18th century corduroys boomed during the industrial revolution, becoming the working class fabric and stayed that way for a few hundred years.

Then the turn of the 1960's and 1970's showed that fashion was more than just chucking on whatever you could find, it was about expressing an identity. Corduroy found themselves in the mix of this fashion revolution, being created in different style and colours. Predominantly as a pair of trousers or a flashy suit, the world of cords opened the doors of possibilities for daring outfits forever.

It's no secret that fashion trends revive themselves, and corduroys are a perfect example of that. Since the 70's they have bounced back on occasion, even Gianni Versace created an entire men's corduroy clothing line during the 80's. After that, the vintage fashion trend has been like a jack-in-a-box popping into our wardrobes every so often. Vintage from the offset, always looking unique and old-fashioned, the trend has always had a daring edge. This can often be off-putting to some who might prefer to steer clear of anything corduroy, but that would be a big mistake as you don't need to be afraid. You can be as adventurous as you like, whether that's fully suited and booted or just a casual jacket to add a little something to your outfit. There's a way for everyone to wear this misunderstood fashion trend.

Max Level Of Corduroy

Dare to bare all that is corduroy. Head to toe corduroy can be scary and sometimes people often shy away from the idea, but with a little thought, you can pull off something that will make you stand out from the crowd in the best way possible. A cord jacket can look rather dapper in a darker colour, for instance, a navy or deep blue. When partnered with matching trousers your (with what is considered 'out there') suit can look as smart as the next guy in a traditional suit, but yours will be full of character.

Dare To Stand Out

Corduroy trousers are often the preferred option, most likely because they come in such a variety of colours.  You can be as daring as you like with trousers as you can go for a bright eye-catching colour like Saturdays NYC pink trousers, or you can go for something less striking such as a darker colour such as black. If you wanted to wear something that wasn't so 1970's you could try a plain t-shirt with your bright corduroys, this will keep your look in tone with the revised corduroy trend. However, if you decide to go for black corduroys you can have a little more fun with your options. Adding a patterned shirt will not look out of place, nor with a standard plain t-shirt. This can be the difference between dressing your outfit up or down, but black cords will give you that smart-casual style that will slide effortlessly with most outfits.

Can't Go Wrong With A Shirt

One of the easiest options when it comes to wearing corduroys. A corduroy shirt can be worn on its own or as an overshirt (both shown below). For something more smart-casual, a buttoned-up shirt can be a great choice for an evening look, the 'wale' which is the actual name for the number of ridges between each inch, will add texture and personality to your style. Thus looking great can be pretty much effortless. Paired with black jeans and Chelsea or Desert boots, you will be ready to show off your new found love for corduroys.

A Quick Grab And Go

A corduroy jacket can be a glamorous choice or very casual choice depending on your style. If you're going for an evening look, a corduroy jacket can be very sophisticated, a slim fit jacket with 'needle' cords would look charming. With a pair of trousers in the matching colour and an oxford shirt, you'll add length to your silhouette without even realizing it. Alternatively, if you are looking for something less formal you can opt for a something like Lois Jean's jacket. A simple cord jacket in a traditional beige colour with a plain white t-shirt will pair together cleanly, add a pair of black jeans or chinos to keep it casual.


So now you know that wearing corduroys doesn't have to be scary and can actually look stylish with minimal effort, and would like some more inspiration for a full outfit, then check out our top picks for corduroy outfits this season.


The Manual

  • Life
  • Collective
  • Style
  • Grooming
  • News
            A Guide To Winter Knitwear

            A Guide To Winter Knitwear

            If there's one thing everyone can agree on is that winter is the season of knitwear. But with there being so much choice out there, we've broken do...

            read more