About three years ago, a writer of mine pitched a story for Style Girlfriend: “Five Ways to Wear Overalls.” Slightly younger, and way (we’re talking, way) hipper than me, I trusted her taste but nevertheless shot her ahead-of-the-trend trend story down, full stop. Her reaction to my emphatic “Lol NO” was, I’m sure, whatever the three years ago equivalent of “Ok boomer” might have been.
Last year, I gave in a little, greenlighting a piece on styling overalls into a Halloween costume (‘90’s boy bander! Mr T! Mario and Luigi!). Yes, you’d need overalls for the outfit, but Style Girlfriend wasn’t truly co-signing on men in overalls, I told myself.
Then, a funny thing happened recently. In the span of one week, two different - sophisticated! well-dressed! - guy friends confided in me, “Megan, I...I think I want a pair of overalls?”
So I give in! And to be honest, I get it. I own a pair of overalls from Madewell and love them maybe a little too much. Who am I to stand in the way of breaking down the pants patriarchy?
Below, five pairs of #SGapproved overalls guys can wear (even when it’s not Halloween):
This pair of black overalls from the surf-inspired brand RVCA make the perfect entrant into an overalls style experiment. Cotton denim with just a smidge of stretch, you can wear them like regular ol’ black jeans, paired with sneakers or a laced boot. Feeling hesitant? Throw on a hoodie and no one even needs to know you’re double-strapping it.
In brown corduroy, get ready to make more of a style statement...and some noise. The “zhush zhush zhush” of cords is pretty much impossible to avoid. A large pocket on the front bib and button sides provide decorative detail, so keep the rest of your outfit subtle - no loud patterns or colors.
This Dr. Denim pair of overalls are cut in a relaxed fit with a slightly tapered leg and zip fly (relieving any, ah, relieving issues). The light beige hue reminds me of the carpenter pants that were popular in middle school and would look great worn similarly - with an oversized hoodie over top, or a henley shirt underneath.
One of my guy friends even had a pair picked out when asking for my overalls hot take - this style from LA-based Seeker. While writing this, I emailed him to ask if he’d pulled the trigger.
His response? “I was going to SURPRISE you by wearing them next time I see you, but yes and I love them. It’s like wearing loose, baggy pants but without the worry that they’re sagging off your ass. I mean, what a dream.”
As for how he wears them? “UNDER A SWEATER. No one ever knows.” Style baby steps, I guess!
Carhartt WIP, $250
You know a formerly workwear-only item has gone high end when Carhartt shows up on Mr Porter. This style also comes in winter white, but there’s only one pair left, so hurry and snap ‘em up if I’ve convinced you by now!