J. Crew pleat pants
Blazer, J. Crew ; top, RACHEL Rachel Ray; pants, J. Crew Factory; shoes, Stuart Weitzman; bag, Mulberry (via consignment)

In Impossible Conversations there is a section called “Ugly Chic”, a concept that both Miuccia Prada and Elsa Schiaparelli have explored in their design work. These pants are … definitely more high street than high fashion, but they reminded me of that section. I mean, we are talking about front pleat pants. Honestly, I am not 100% certain that I’m cool enough to pull off these pants in a chic (as opposed to just plain ugly) way, but I love their whole don’t-give-a-f**k vibe. As a bonus, they’re office appropriate. And hella comfortable.

J. Crew pleat pants

The colour is actually a lovely sort of subdued, soft cobalt. Less strident, for lack of a better word, than the usual shade of this colour one finds in stores. It goes beautifully with many pieces in my closet, starting with my ubiquitous black schoolboy blazer. Black and blue, and not bruise-like in the least. Ugly chic? I’ll take it.

J. Crew pleat pants
pleat-y goodness

20 Comments on Ugly Chic

  1. Ah, pleats. The slightly slouchy look of the pants is key here. It makes them chic in that loose, cool, edgy way. I’m so tempted to hunt a pair down but think I’m too hippy for the fit to have the same effect. Though maybe it’s a matter of fit and not size, but I have a hard time figuring out when that’s the case and when it just ain’t gonna work no matter the tailoring.

    By the way – after haranguing you to tell me your nail secrets several posts back, I now am wondering: is your hair color just that glorious all on its own?

    • Honestly, I don’t know if they translate as “edgy and cool” on more pronounced pear shapes; they do emphasize the hips quite a bit, so they might not be what most people are looking for. But I could be wrong – it could depend entirely on relative proportions, you know?

      My hair colour is natural; I stopped dyeing by hair about 6 years ago, and I love the low maintenance aspect of it – especially as my hair texture is a bit of a PITA right now. Ironically, I spent the 10 years previous to that searching for the “perfect” shade of red, without success. My mom is still mad at me for dyeing my hair for all those years πŸ˜‰

  2. Those would be absolutely adorable if they were transformed into a medium-to-short pair of shorts, with a little turned-up hem, and paired with a kitten heel or low wedge. And I LOOOOOOVE how you styled them!