Monday, October 5, 2009

State of the Union Address: Trousers

(All photos the property of Getty Images/The Associated Press/Reuters Pictures)

At the KC we are absolutely obsessed with how our trousers fit - it's an unhealthy affliction...In the game of golf, your pant is often the only seriously tailored item in your arsenal, so the fit is simply paramount. We like a very trim pant that is slightly tapered so it sits nicely, exposing most all of the shoe - if we're going to buy an expensive pair of golf shoes, you're going to get a good look at them - sorry...

In the past few years, bootcut golf trousers have become extremely popular. Extreme bootcut models are offered by nearly every manufacturer/designer of modern golf apparel. Think Sligo, J. Lindeberg, Poulter Designs etc. We feel the same way about a fuller-cut, bootcut golf trouser as we do about a similarly bootcut jean - not going to wear it. While okay on taller individuals, they have a tendency to make you appear shorter and squatter and should be avoided on the shorter set. We realize that mobility and comfort are important to nearly every golfer and many find a trimmer pant constricting. That being said, the width of the bottoms of some of these golf trousers is becoming comical.  

A pant that is cut slim throughout the hip and leg and flares slightly at the base is much more forgiving and makes a lot of sense for golf, as you get the benefits of a slimmer silhouette (avoiding the dreaded parachute effect) without feeling like if you bend down to analyze a putt, you're going to give the gallery the proper read on your arse.  

Tony Q'aja introduced the v-slit at the bottom of Darren Clarke's trousers several years back and now seemingly every other golfer is touting the advantages in drape that the option provides. Many companies have also added zippers on their trousers, which allow the wearer to create that "v" by opening the zips slightly, which results in that same break on the top of the shoe. Personally, we think the now infamous "Euro V-Slit" looks nice, especially on a slimmer cut trouser like Luke Donald's RLX Green pant in the above photo, but is more of an aesthetic touch than anything performance-related. 

The best looking trousers being worn on Tour these days, cut-wise, are on Henrik Stenson. His Hugo Boss pants are snug but not tight and the length is utter perfection - just hitting the top of the shoe. Honorable mentions include Luke Donald in RLX -the Apex cut is our favorite - Frenchman Raphael Jacquelin and Ryuji Imada. These guys are great models for the thinner set. For those with a little more girth, Phil Mickelson (Tom Ford) and Graeme McDowell (Q'aja Couture) are good guys to look for. 

Cuffs you ask? Pleats? While flat-fronts have become de rigueur with Touring professionals, especially those under 35, pleats are still around and appear to be making a resurgence for spring/summer 2010. (We may have even seen some JL pleated trousers, shhh...) Something very Hogan or Jones-esque about pleats, cardigans and other things we're seeing come back to the game after some time away. Might be a nice change to take a cue from the gentlemanly 30's and 40's after a blast of the high-octane 70's.    

Cuffs, meanwhile, are always acceptable - in fact, we'd love to see more cuffs on Tour. A nice, slim-cut trouser with a 2-inch cuff would look equally as beautiful in a gray cotton for summer or flannels for fall/winter. Many stylish members we see at clubs around the country are cuff guys and you can most certainly go with a cuff even if you're wearing flat-fronts. You can see a great example of this done by Milanese men

In closing, we think it's fair to say that when it comes to pant preference, ask not what your trouser can do for you, but what you can do for your trouser...If you find a pair of golf trousers on sale or otherwise and want them to fit a certain way, take them to a trusty tailor and let them go to work. There are no real "rules" and any that exist are meant to be broken and reinterpreted - find what works for you and please, above all...Enjoy it. Golf fashion is fun. 


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