How to wear summer trousers

How to wear summer trousers

Trousers are always an afterthought in summer collections, but these khaki ones are a treasure

I love summer, but I do not love shorts. Some people get to August and are thrilled at the opportunity to wear shorts every day, but I am not one of them. I do wear shorts (on holiday, for exercise, mooching about at home), but unless it is super hot then, to be honest, I’d rather not. Which means I am constantly on the hunt for the elusive treasure that is a nice pair of summer trousers.

Trousers are always an afterthought in summer collections. Clothes shopping in summer means rails of shorts, skirts, dresses and swimwear, and that’s basically it. There are always white jeans, which I love for the way they wink to summer without requiring you to leave the comfort zone of a denim-clad bottom half. But, unless you want to spend half your life doing laundry and the other half fending off the Liz Hurley jokes, you can’t wear white jeans every day. Apart from that, the summer-trouser offering is sparse. There might be some flimsy, shapeless elasticated-waist trousers that look like pyjama bottoms on the rail. Unfortunately, these continue to look like pyjama bottoms when you try them on.

But structured, tailored trousers look out of balance when you team them with summery, lo-fi T-shirts and tank tops. Tracksuit bottoms don’t work either – they have been the trouser hero of this season and are what I traditionally wear as a flying outfit on holiday, with white trainers – but I don’t need a flying outfit, this year, and anyway I am thoroughly bored with tracksuit bottoms. Palazzo pants suggest a sun-dappled grandeur that this summer isn’t quite delivering, so I’ll pass for now. Also, there is something about palazzo pants on an Englishwoman on holiday that is just a smidgen too much of a tourist cliche. They are the selfie stick of the linen-shirt classes. These khaki trousers by & Other Stories, on the other hand, are a treasure. Ankle-length is better than floor-dragging, and the crinkle fabric means you don’t have to worry about the irritating speed with which creases set in when it’s hot. A field visit to some real-world shop floors the other day revealed that Jigsaw and Mango also give surprisingly good trouser right now. The lightweight, neutral-toned kind that look good with a Breton top, like the old favourite I’m wearing here. Hang on – what was that I was saying about tourist cliches?

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