Is there a chino that will actually work for me?
June 14, 2021 12:09 PM   Subscribe

I'm looking for a men's chino that is similar to the J Crew 770 but fits me slightly better. It's very difficult to find a full stock of anything to try on in a retail store these days so I'm curious what folks thoughts are.

I am looking for chinos that work for me, and it has been a years long Goldilocks type of mission--6 feet tall, 210 lbs, cis male, my only muscles of any note are in my legs due to cycling. I purchased a pair of J Crew 700 straight-fit chinos and they are close to right but not quite right.

What works for these is that they are not too boxy, but also not super aggressively "skinny." These are 36x30 pants, here are specifics and the improvement I seek:

-- The size 36 pants are actually more like 39 inches, and it's perfect for me.

-- Mid-thigh is about 22 inches around--I could use an inch more.

-- Calf is my real issue--about 17 inches around, and I could really use more like 18.

-- Leg opening is 16 inches, I could go from there to 17 inches.

In general, websites don't offer these specifics, particularly the leg opening is never a detail any site can offer. Some things I've considered:

-- Land's End; in the past, the Land's End "Straight Fit" option worked for me, but I've found that the same model kind of changes a bit from year to year, or there's something less dependable about the fit.

-- J Crew 1040 "Athetic" chinos, but they don't actually carry these in store, so I've not been able to try any on. Anyone have experience with these?

-- Any other thoughts? I tend to look for things in the Land's End to J Crew price range ($40 to $80) but if someone has something more expensive that is super amazing and durable enough for a bike commute, I'd consider that too. Thanks!
posted by kensington314 to Shopping (8 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
This is the perfect use of Nordstrom's trunk club service. Tell them everything you told us, and they will send you a box of several pair to try on. Keep what you like send the rest back . I've done this with jeans, bathingsuits, and other stuff I know I need to try on but don't want to go to the store to do so.
posted by dpx.mfx at 12:14 PM on June 14

You don't have to use the trunk service -- you can order the 1040s and just return them if they don't fit?
posted by DarlingBri at 12:21 PM on June 14

Cons: 36" is in stock but not 38", it's double your budget, and it's more casual than normal chino with patch pockets on the rear, BUT you might have luck with these pants from Chrome.

I also like Outlier a lot, bike-commuted in them constantly, could be worth a shot; free return shipping.
posted by supercres at 12:21 PM on June 14

Have you considered a Levi 541 (Athletic fit) pant? Or a Dockers with stretch? Unfortunately Levi's ended its bike commuter line, but they used to have a really nice stretch khaki with a special bike lock loop.
posted by Comrade_robot at 2:57 PM on June 14

I like Lucky's 410 chinos quite a bit. The stretch is enough to make a difference, but they manage not to get the weird too-stretchy look. You'd have to order online, but you can return in-store. The fit is extremely similar to the 410 jeans which you could probably try on in-store to get the sizing right. They do tend to vanity size, so you'd probably wear about the same size as the JCrew ones.
posted by duien at 4:07 PM on June 14

I’ve emailed companies about specific measurements not listed on the website before. Most are happy to provide them. Rise and leg opening are both common enough that most companies have them on hand. Thigh width also isn’t unusual.
posted by kevinbelt at 4:21 PM on June 14

Not sure if exact dimensions but I love my slim fit traveler pants from Banana Republic. You may need to order a couple of sizes to see what works best but they are definitely not skinny and not boxy.
posted by piyushnz at 6:45 AM on June 15

You don't have to use trunk club, you can just order, but I find that my stylist has access to things that aren't on the site, and is very familiar with the fit and cut of different stuff, and often sends me things that I would never have picked based on my description, especially one as detailed as the OP.
posted by dpx.mfx at 9:32 AM on June 15

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