Robert Rauschenberg

On my radar: Robert Rauschenberg’s chinos

robert Rauschenberg chinos and sweatshirt Richard avedon 1960

Are we ready for a chino revival? For some, like me, chinos (or khakis) never went away, but this autumn there are rumblings of a re-emergence.

How so?

Well, the main driver for me is the forthcoming Robert Rauschenberg Tate Modern exhibition, which will give rise to all manner of musings on the New York artist’s classic-casual style. Chinos, a sweatshirt or a white shirt were the Rauschenberg wardrobe staples, as described by Simon Chilvers in The Guardian. So far, so normcore. I’ve always loved this unisex, utilitarian look and it serves me well. (Urban Outfitters is swimming in over-dyed Fruit of the Loom sweatshirts right now, should you want to stock up.)
Robert Rauscenberg New Balance chinos sweatshirt

Meanwhile, Lemaire’s chinos for women are a highlight of the autumn drop, with their full-legged proportions and high waist, teamed with a contrasting belt. For a more gamine look, switch the shirting for a fine gauge black merino turtleneck with super skinny or short sleeves (I’ve got this one from & Other Stories), and wear with loafers and cream socks.

Lemaire chinos aw16

I like my chinos baggy. Skinny, low-waisted chinos are a no-no for me, and they should be in a nice, heavyweight fabric, none of this skimpy, stretchy rubbish. On the high street, there’s not much about, but Madewell’s are workable (if a little bit slim). And these J. Crews have lots of potential – I rather like them in pink
J. Crew chinos for women

If you need any more encouragement, have a read of Racked’s history lesson here.Then tell me that you’re not ready to jump head first into your nearest thrift bin to seek out some original 1940s khakis…


WORDS: Disneyrollergirl/Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGES: top – Richard Avedon; catwalk – Vogue Runway; bottom – J.Crew
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