Dickies clothing have been making workwear for almost 100 years, which means it seriously knows what its doing when it comes to today’s menswear staples. Here’s how to style Dickies chinos across their four most iconic fits.
Beginning life in the USA back in 1922 as the William Dickinson Manufacturing Company, Dickies (as the brand is more commonly known) has gone from workwear essentials to wardrobe necessities. Long gone are the days when you’d just find a pair of Dickies chinos in a factory and thanks to subcultures the world over, from skateboarding to Hip Hop, Punk to B-boys, Dickies have seen a huge surge in popularity since the 1990s.
Today the brand’s signature chinos remain one of the most popular choices amongst men (and even women), especially on the streetwear circuit, most likely due to their versatility. At the men’s shows during fashion week you’ll be able to spot a pair on the street, while some of the biggest designers such as Stussy and Liam Hodges have even collaborated with the workwear label. Why are they so popular though?
“Dickies is an excellent wardrobe staple go-to – tried and tested in American work-wear, its value is second to none.”
With four main fits (872, 873, 874 and 803), whether you prefer a skinnier fit or a looser style, Dickies have got you sorted.
Below are the main styles of Dickies chinos and how best to style them. Toying between slim fit and tapered? Wondering what on earth 874 vs 873 could mean? We’ve got you covered.
The Dickies 872 trouser takes the classic chino silhouette and gives it a modern reworking. The slim straight style is slightly more tailored than the original and has a subtle tapered leg. Constructed in a blend of cotton and polyester and a 8.5oz twill, the work pants combine the typical Dickies durability with a contemporary fit.
The 872 sits midway between the 873 and the 803 – not quite as loose as the former, but not as tight as the latter. Wear with a tucked in T-shirt and a pair of loafers for a sleeker look than you’d get with the skater-favoured 874 (more on that shortly).
Again a reworking on the traditional Dickies workwear fit, the 873 chino is looser than the 872 style, but still more structured than the original Dickies trousers you would’ve found in factories across America.
The notable feature of the 873 is the rise between the crotch and the waist-line, which is lower than the 872 – this means the belt line actually sits lower and so the trousers aren’t as baggy as styles such as the 874 (the baggiest of all Dickies fits). Using the same polyester/cotton blend as the 872, the slim fit Dickies 873 are a smarter take on the classic style. These are the Dickies that will look best with a smart shirt.
The Dickies 874 skate trouser is the style you’re most likely to see today due to a rise in the interest in how skaters dress. The trousers are rich in heritage and thanks to their durability and hardwearing construction, the 874 have been a favourite amongst skaters for some time and now this has reached the masses – mainly due to a rise in looser fits on catwalks and on the high street alike.
Encompassing all the classic traits of the Dickies work pant, the 874 style is stain and crease resistant, meaning skaters everywhere have favoured them because of the way that they have been engineered to move. As opposed to the 872 and 873 styles, the 874 has a wider rise and a lower drop crotch, allowing for a lot more movement than the tapered and slimmer fits. With a wider leg, pair with a pair of Converse All Star Chuck Taylor high top trainers in black for a retro-inspired skate look.
Dickies 874 vs. 873
There aren’t huge differences between the two, so you might be stuck on which pair is for you. As I mentioned earlier the main difference between the two is that the 873 is slightly less baggy and more cropped, so they’ll look better if you’re going for a relatively smart outfit.
Perhaps the biggest step away from Dickies’ original purpose of factory workwear, the 803 is the most revolutionary Dickies style. Reworking the classic style for a twenty first century taste, the 803 sits below the waist, but has the lowest rise. These are 98% constructed in cotton with a touch of spandex (2%) for extra stretch, making them the skinniest and most fitted Dickies style to date.
The 803 is the fit that will most likely slot right into your wardrobe due to its modern silhouette and a pair in black will go a long way. Pair with a shirt for a smarter look, or with a T-shirt for an everyday outfit. A notable feature of the 803 fit is the tunnel belt loop detail which veers away from the tough traditional Dickies belt loops. The 803 is for the man who prefers skinny jeans to wider legs. On another note, Dickies slim straight 803s will probably suit the shorter man best – wider styles will only make you look shorter.
Slim Fit Vs. Skinny
They both have their pros and cons, and the truth is that one isn’t really superior to the other. It just depends what look you’re going for. Different styles will be complimented by different fitting Dickies. This guide has hopefully outlined how to wear the different types of Dickies.
How to Style Dickies Chinos
- Start with a black pair, then invest in lighter styles.
- Pair Dickies’ wider leg fits with a pair of Converse Chuck Taylors for a retro skater style.
- Grab a pair of the Dickies 873 chinos for smarter look – perfect for any occasion.
- If you have short legs opt for a pair of 803s. Wider legs will exaggerate shorter legs.
On That Note
You might be thinking that picking out a pair of chinos is a simple task, but it’s actually not. Nobody is the same shape and Dickies understands that – slimmer fits for some men, wider legs for others. That said each pair of Dickies comes with quality assurance (after all they were created to last years and years and to endure any situation) and almost 100 years of success. So with all the tips and details above you’ll be able to pick out the Dickies chino that works for you (or if you like to mix up your style you might pick one of each).