Histoire d’un succès : le chino

Success story: chinos

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After the t-shirt and the sweatshirt , we continued our summer saga with a new story... That of chinos. Also called "khaki", it was first worn by soldiers looking for light pants that could blend more easily into the landscape.

Nowadays, an emblematic piece of workwear style, chinos are one of the essentials to have in your wardrobe, just like your favorite denim. Pairing perfectly with casual or more chic pieces, it provides you with an easy daily style and is available in endless variations.

Military uniform that became a symbol of the preppy movement before rising to the rank of iconic in men's wardrobe: what is the history of chinos? This is the success story that we invite you to retrace today. Not without emotion, because Hast and chinos are a great love story. A look back at the history of an essential pair of pants that continues to be renewed.

The origins of chinos

Let's get back to basics. Already: why were chinos invented? To begin with, chinos were born in two different places. First of all, in the middle of the 19th century, when the British armies occupied part of India. Officer Sir Harry Lumsden finds the red and white military uniforms a little too flashy and above all very hot. He then had the good idea of ​​creating cotton pants in natural shades, between khaki and beige. Hence the name “khaki” also given to chinos, which means “ground color” in Hindi.

At the same time, during the Spanish-American War, we found soldiers dressed in these famous pants. The American troops stationed in the Philippines decided to abandon their wool stockings for a less warm material, cotton. The fabric was then imported from China, which explains why the soldiers called this garment "chino", meaning "Chinese", in Spanish.

A star is born: chinos

Like other clothing, like the t-shirt, the chino was designed to meet a practical need before becoming the casual piece that we know. Thus, when World War II ended, American soldiers continued to wear chinos in their civilian lives, and particularly at university. This strongly contributed to its democratization and chinos even became the centerpiece of the preppy style, a fashion movement launched by students from the American wealthy classes.

Then, as is often the case in fashion, the worlds of music, cinema and even literature seized on the trend to the point of creating a real myth. We find chinos on screen, worn by stars like Steve McQueen or Marlon Brando. Representatives of a new assertive look, the icons of the time combined chinos with a liberated silhouette. Other personalities, like Jack Kerouac, leader of the Beat Generation movement, wear chinos, like the uniform of the new elegant rebel.

A little break

Chinos have also had their little slack. After a dazzling success, it experienced less enthusiasm from subsequent generations, who relegated it to the status of a dad's play, a little old-fashioned. But as in fashion, everything is a story of cycle and eternal beginning, chinos have fortunately regained all their panache and their essential status. Playable endlessly, it comes in timeless shades or brighter colors and is adorned with original details.

Chinos by Hast

A true essential, chinos naturally joined the Hast collections in 2019. Very easy to wear with a shirt , a t-shirt or even a sports jacket, chinos by Hast are both simple, with discreet and elegant finishes, but also timeless and durable, thanks to its manufacture in quality fabrics, Italian cotton canvas. For the season, we have chosen sunny colors, such as plum or ocher brown which join the ranks of the faithful navy and khaki. A tip: slip it into your summer suitcase between your passport and a pair of sunglasses.

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