How to Wear Cords Like a Pro

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Cords on the runway, worn by SJP and blogger Shevah


1. Theyskens' Theory Fall 2011 RTW, 2. SJP via Pacific Coast News, 3. Shevah V. via Lookbook

Corduroy pants are among winter's trendiest pieces, but if you're stumped about how to wear these retro-inspired trousers, you've come to the right place! Read on for some tips and tricks for wearing cords, as well as some outfits for inspiration:

4 Tips & Tricks for Rocking Corduroy Pants:

  • If the word "corduroy" gives you visions of the huge, bell-bottomed pants your mom wore in the '70s, just know that cords have come a long way since then! Today's versions come in every style from skinny to boot-cut and are available in a rainbow of different colors.
  • That being said, if you're not ready to commit to a colorful pair of cords, look for a neutral pair in black, tan or gray.
  • Since corduroy fabric has such a retro vibe, try to create a balance by wearing your cords with modern tops and accessories.
  • Having trouble figuring out what to wear with cords? Just style them the same as you would your favorite pair of jeans -- it's that simple!

5 Stylish Ways to Wear Cords

Outfit 1: Menswear-Inspired

Corduroy pants outfit 1


Product Info: Cords- Anthropologie, Top- J. Crew, Cardigan- Madewell, Earrings- Fossil, Necklace- J. Crew, Oxfords- ModCloth

For this look, start by pairing some zipper-detailed cords with a classic striped top, then layer on a matching navy cardigan. Add some sparkly oxfords and fun jewelry for an outfit that's perfect for classes.

Outfit 2: Denim Copycat

Corduroy pants outfit 2


Product Info: Cords- Urban Outfitters, Top- Topshop, Jacket- Dorothy Perkins, Bracelet- ModCloth, Watch- Woolrich, Flats- DSW

These cords are perfect for the corduroy-shy girl -- from a distance, they look just like jeans! This means that you can wear them however you'd like, but for this look, I went in a more feminine direction. Pair a printed floral tee with a blush-colored kimono jacket and add some woven black flats. Accessorize with a matching watch and pretty bracelet for a comfy and cute everyday outfit.

Outfit 3: Red-y for Nighttime

Corduroy pants outfit 3


Product Info: Cords- ASOS, Top- Topshop, Jacket- Miss Selfridge, Boots- H&M, Ring- Topshop

This outfit is a little more edgy, which makes it perfect for a casual night out. The dark red cords look great when paired with a lacy top, while the moto-style jacket adds some edge. Tuck the cords into some ankle booties, and for the finishing touch, add an oversized cocktail ring.

Outfit 4: Comfy Chic

Corduroy pants outfit 4


Product Info: Cords- J. Crew, Top- Reiss, Cardigan- Old Navy, Pumps- Bakers, Necklace- Nicole Miller

Dress up a pair of black, bootcut cords and a plain gray t-shirt by adding a colorful wrap cardigan. Add a matching pair of teal pumps and a statement necklace for a bold, yet understated look.

Outfit 5: Pink Lady

Corduroy pants outfit 5


Product Info: Cords- LOFT, Sweater- H&M, Headband- ASOS, Wedges- Piperlime, Earrings- Topshop

If you're ready to dive into this trend headfirst, why not rock a pair of colorful cords? Since these pink ones from LOFT are so bright, try wearing them with neutral sweater for balance. Add a pair of wedge pumps and accessorize with some chandelier earrings and a light pink headband.

What do you think?

Would you ever wear a pair of cords? What do you think of these outfits? Which one is your favorite? How would you wear cords? Let me know what you think by leaving a comment below!