I wear a lot of synthetic climbing style pants from MEC & REI. I like the fact they are comfy and give me lots of freedom of movement in case I need to round house kick a pack of Zombies! The problem is they lack in the style department. Usually I don’t care, but when I go out with a group of my stylish peers I feel goofy looking like I am headed to Everest Base Camp. I do own some stylish fashion jeans, but they always feel constrictive so I put them on only when I must. I have had some baggy jeans in the past, but they fail the style test so I am no better off than wearing climbing gear. Long story short I found these Patagonia jeans and I love ‘em!…=-)
What I love:
- organic cotton
- easy recycling program once they are worn out
- produced in non-slave like conditions
- waist available in 1″ increments [in my range of sizes 32″-34″]
- long 34″ inseam available so I don’t look like I am ready for a flood
- stylish enough for my needs
- enough stretch in the fabric to feel like outdoors gear
- I can afford them at $79/pair
- lifetime warranty
Now in terms of cut I bought the Regular Fit version which is supposed to be their relaxed fit jeans – frankly they seem really narrow and straight to me and I have scrawny chicken legs. I tried on the narrower Straight Leg version, but they clung to me like Saran Wrap – which at my age is not attractive.
Anyways I was pretty pleased with how they fit, but what really rocked my world was a few days into wearing them I realized that although they were one of my tightest fitting pants I completely forgot I had them on once I left the house. They had enough stretch in the fabric to adjust to whatever I was doing that day. That means loose fitting climbing pant comfort with increased style for my urban adventures. Sweet!
As far as durability goes I had an issue with my first pair due to some stitching which failed, but I returned them without a receipt no questions asked. I’ve had some unbelievably long service from a number of my synthetic climbing pants. I’m not sure these jeans can come close to that, but they’ll probably see less harsh use. As always I will report back with a review once I’ve had these in play longer.
BTW – if you are an outdoor slob like me who needs to look presentable socially or for work here is my secret weapon at the moment – Patagonia jeans or cords, Patagonia short sleeve button up shirt and Blundstone Chunks boots.It looks acceptable for anything short of mandatory suit wearing meetings. It’s comfortable and you can cycle in it. It’s not heinously expensive and you can wear all these pieces separately for your travels and other fun activities.