Wide-leg Pants

AKA: baggy pants

How to say it: as it looks

Traditional Features: 


  • same width all through the legs to the hems
  • hems circumference of at least 20″
  • loose fit


…of the style:  Wide leg pants as we know popped into fashion in the 1960s, a style created  by surfers or by kids in the ghetto wearing hand-me-downs depending on what you are reading.

Wherever the look came from, the wide leg pant was popular through the 60s and 70s for both men and women as an alternative to bell-bottoms or flares. The style died out in the 80s in favour of baggy shirts and exercise wear but returned in the 90s in various guises. Hip hop groups like TLC popularised the wide-leg-pants-with-a-tight-top look, while Gwen Stefani and the Spice Girls preferred to wear their wide-leg pants with a crop top.

Skater boys (and girls) also adopted the wide leg pant into their uniform due to the ease of movement the wider legs offered. Paired with skate shoes and a wallet chain, this look remained popular into the early 2000s with the help of Avril Lavigne. The turn of the millennium also brought wide-leg pants into the business world as tailored styles in tweed and wool (often worn with stilettos) became a favourite around the office.

The second decade of the 21st century hit the wide-leg pant hard as fashion fell in love with the skinny silhouette, but recent runway collections and street styles show that the tides have turned again and the wide-leg pant is back in vogue.

…of the name: The legs of the pants are wide, therefore they are called wide-leg pants.

For more info on wide-leg pants try Wikipedia, or WiseGeek.

21st Century Wide-leg Pants

To be honest the wide-leg pant never really disappeared, they were always available, it just wasn’t cool to wear them for a while. But with the changing silhouette trends it looks like there is about to be a whole lot more choice available for fans of the wide-leg.

armani collezioni chloe

Armani Collezioni, Chloe

donna karan Diane von Furstenburg

Donna Karan, Diane von Furstenberg


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