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Engineered Garments Oxford Pant


Welcome to "DEEP DIVE," where we explore the inspirations behind our beloved Engineered Garments. In this feature, our spotlight is on the “Oxford Pant,” a wide-leg trouser introduced in the Fall Winter 2023 collection.

Each Engineered Garments collection revolves around a theme; for instance, the Fall Winter 2023 collection's "Heavy Duty Ivy" theme blends elements of outdoor and collegiate styles. Beyond theme, the collection demands coherence, offering ample style variety to craft complete looks. The wide pant serves as a pivotal piece in each season’s ensemble, akin to the SS23’s Sarrouel Pant or FW22’s Duffle Over Pant. This year’s featured wide pant, the Oxford Pant, draws inspiration from the Oxford bags, a favorite among 1920s English university aesthetes.

Oxford bags, named for the British colloquial term for “baggy pants,” were exceedingly loose-fitting trousers, typically crafted from lightweight flannel. While fitting conventionally from the waist through the thigh, they ballooned below the knee, expanding toward the cuff and hem, often measuring around 25 inches in circumference (compared to the typical 16 inches of regular pants).

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Fashion history often involves conflicting origin stories. One widely held belief suggests they emerged as a workaround after Oxford University banned knickerbockers - low-waisted, baggy pants that tightened just below the knee and were often tucked into long socks. The Oxford bags were so voluminous that they could conceal a pair of forbidden knickerbockers underneath.

Another account disputes the Oxford University narrative, proposing an origin dating back to late 19th-century English rowers. These athletes purportedly wore long, baggy warm-up pants, resembling a prototype of sweatpants, which classmates then imitated, gradually exaggerating the style.

Despite their origins, the style gained prominence in 1924 among a small faction of Oxonian aesthetes - erudite students known for their interest in progressive art, literature, politics, and fashion. Their rebellious style spread, leading university tailors across England to receive a deluge of requests for these extra-wide trousers. American Ivy League students studying abroad brought back their versions, sparking a craze in the United States, even fueled by President Calvin Coolidge's avowal that he “wouldn’t be caught dead” in a pair of Oxford Bags.

However, students’ fervor for these daring pants was transient. A May 1925 fashion column in an English newspaper quoted an Oxford tailor predicting that “the wide trousers would go out as quickly as they came in.” By the decade’s end, the style had all but vanished.

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The Oxford Pant by designer Daiki Suzuki pays tribute to the legendary Oxford Bags, with a few crucial adjustments. Engineered Garments' version maintains a pronounced yet wearable width consistent throughout the leg, departing from the extreme proportions of the original.Designed to sit at the waist, these pants feature a deep rise and an inseam breaking at the shoe. The front boasts a slightly formal appearance with two pleats, lending an American aesthetic and a formal waist closure. Meanwhile, the back offers a relaxed demeanor with two simple flap pockets. Daiki incorporates signature Engineered Garments touches like the drawstring waist, adjustable from the back, an elastic waistband for improved fit, and a drawcord in the hem enabling wearers to manipulate the pant's shape.

The Oxford Pant is a versatile garment, both complementing the Engineered Garments Fall Winter 2023 collection and showcasing the value inherent in even the quirkiest of trends.

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The Oxford Pant is available in various fabrics:
Dark Navy Wool Uniform Serge
Dk. Navy Cotton 4.5W Corduroy
Olive Cotton 4.5W Corduroy
Khaki Cotton 4.5W Corduroy
Grey Poly Wool Herringbone
Khaki Chino TwillNavy Solid Poly Wool Flannel
Olive Solid Poly Wool Flannel