How to Wear Fall’s Coolest Pants

Wide-leg trousers are the hardworking update your closet needs.

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With the drama of a maxi skirt and the polished look of a suit, wide-leg pants have swept in to become fall’s coolest pants. Cate Blanchett recently endorsed the notably comfortable cut by wearing one pair in two stylish ways, highlighting its versatility. While she paired her rust-coloured trousers with a delicate printed blouse for a chic evening look, she also showed that a pair of wide-leg pants is all it takes to update a classic button-down white shirt and blazer combo. And if you’re already thinking of winter-proofing your wardrobe, wide-leg pants look great with a French-tucked slouchy knit or a lightweight turtleneck.

(Photo: Gary Gershoff/Getty Images, Gotham/GC Images)

A well-fitting pair of wide-leg pants is guaranteed to make your legs appear longer as they’re cut to skim along hips and thighs, with a hemline that grazes the top of the foot. To further maximize this cut’s elongating potential, pick a high-waisted style. A trouser shape that falls straight from hip to hemline will flatter all body shapes and statures, so don’t let cuffs that are too long put you off wide-leg pants. Hemming is an easy tailoring fix that creates a custom fit on a budget. Let your lifestyle inform the final length—anyone who loves heeled shoes and boots can get away with a longer hemline, but if you live in flats or sneakers, opt to have your pants tailored to work with them.

When it comes to fabric, a pair of wide-leg pants in a drapey woven textile will achieve a polished vibe, while rich hues and plaids are versatile and perfect for fall. If you’re looking to shake things up, consider faux leather, velvet and satin versions. To keep things casual, wide-leg jeans and chinos will bring comfort and style to your off-duty wardrobe. Here, we’ve rounded up a few options that will instantly refresh your fall style.