Matador Pants

AKA: there is only one name for this pant

How to say it: Mat-a-door

Traditional Features: 

body template

  • high-waisted
  • tight-fitting throughout the hip and leg
  • mid-calf length
  • can have detailing down the side of the legs mirroring the embroidery on the original taleguilla


…of the style: This style of pant is inspired by the taleguilla, the pants worn by Spanish bullfighters in the ring. The pants are part of an entire costume which is called trajes de luxes or suits of light, thanks to the thousands of sequins and metallic embroidery that adorn the garments. The costume is based on the outfits worn by 18th Century Castilian dandies, known as majos.

Traditionally the taleguilla are extremely high-wasted (as high as the armpit), held up with braces, tight-fitting through the hip and leg and finish mid calf. In Western fashion the matador pant is a somewhat toned down version of the original, often taking one or two defining features rather than copying the whole style as is. The matador pant has been present in high fashion circles as since at least 1954 (the earliest mention that I could find, regarding a pair of Lanvin pants worn by a young Carolina Herrera) and while they aren’t a fashion staple, they do seem to come around every couple of cycles, particularly when high or natural waistlines are on trend.

…of the name: The term comes from the Matador costume that inspired the style.

There is not a lot of information around about Matador pants as a fashion garment, but if you are interested in finding out about the traditional trajes de luxes try Dressed to Kill

21st Century Matador Pants

They aren’t always available, and when they are the styles are quite variable, depending on which features the designer has carried across. These are the best examples I could find…

delpozo moschino

Delpozo, Moschino

oscar de la renta TSUMORI_CHISATO_022_1366.450x675

Oscar de la Renta, Tsumori Chisato


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