Pants Adventure: Banana Republic Pants Review

June 02, 2013

So, back in April, I embarked on a journey to find great work pants but find myself dragging my feet in getting started. The usual suspects didn't seem to hold much promise but I had to start somewhere and had hoped to be pleasantly surprised. 

I wasn't.

Banana Republic had always come highly recommended to me. Many styles come in extended sizes which, right off the bat, have a better chance of fitting me than most options out there (I am on the shorter end of the height spectrum).

I could be nitpicking because the fit of the pants reviewed below was more than adequate and the material on par with the price but there is just something so inherently stale about these designs.

I have therefore come to the conclusion that I am willing to pay more for great designs and may expand my search to include slightly pricier labels once I exhaust mall options.

Style: Jackson Fit Sleek Pant
Color: Black
Fabric: 56% Cotton, 41% Lyocell, 3% Spandex. Unlined.
Fit: Best for someone with muscular/thicker legs and proportionately smaller waist.
Care: Dry clean only

Touted as "curve-loving," the Jackson fit pants run generously through the pant leg and flare out slightly at the hem. For me, there are few issues to contend with. In my ideal world, the Jackson would be about an inch longer but aside from the length the fit was quite good. I didn't decide to keep them because I wasn't blown away by the design and may have considered them in another color but alas, black is the only color this style was made available in this season.

Jackson Fit Sleek Pant | 00P | Black
Waist: 13.5" / Hip: 17" / Length: 37.5" / inseam: 28.5"
Style: Jackson Fit Lightweight Wool Flare
Color: Black/Navy
Fabric: 95% wool, 5% elastane.
Fit: Best for someone with muscular/thicker legs and proportionately smaller waist.
Care: Dry clean only

The wool Jackson fit me slightly loosely (compared to the mostly cotton version) for some reason. It could just be inconsistent sizing but if you are between sizes, you might try the next size down in the wool version.
 Jackson Fit Lightweight Wool Flare | 00P | Black
Waist: 13" / Hip: 17.5" / Length: 37.5" / inseam: 28"
Style: Martin Fit Lightweight Wool Slim Ankle Pant
Color: Black/navy stripe/teal herringbone/blue/grey/navy/grey herringbone/
Fabric: 95% wool, 5% spandex. Lined.
Fit: Best for someone with average to slim legs and proportional midsection.
Care: Dry clean only

These pants in petite look somewhat cropped on 5'2 me; those on the cusp of average height should consider the pants in regular length. I have similar fitting pants from Ann Taylor and the issue for me is unsightly bunching in places due to the shapelier nature of my legs.
 Martin Fit Lightweight Wool Slim Ankle Pant | 00P | Black
Waist: 13.5" / Hip: 17.5" / Length: 34" / inseam: 25.5"
Style: Martin-Fit Wide-Leg Pant
Color: Black/Yellow/White/Khaki
Fabric: 51% rayon, 49% linen. Unlined.
Fit: Best for someone with an ample behind and rounder thighs.
Care: Dry clean only

Wide-leg pants can look so chic (case in point) but the Banana Republic Martin-Fit Wide-Leg Pant didn't do much for me. My midsection/hips are slightly too narrow for the design but I can see this flattering someone with a curvier shape.
Martin-Fit Wide-Leg Pant | 00P | White
Waist: 13.75" / Hip: 19.5" / Length: 36.5" / inseam: 30"
Style:  Heritage Skinny Ankle Zip Pant
Color: Gold Orchid/Blooming Red/Dried Basil/Green Salt
Fabric: 98% cotton, 2% spandex.
Fit: Best for someone with average/thin legs, rounder midsection, and fuller behind.
Care: Machine Washable.

Lastly, for fun, I tried on the Heritage Skinny Pant, a style I don't always appreciate on myself. While there is nothing wrong with someone with muscular legs wanting to wear tight pants, the right fit can go a long way in concealing unattractive bagginess and unsightly pulling. Needless to say, the Heritage Skinny Ankle Zip Pant didn't make the cut for me. 
 Heritage Skinny Ankle Zip Pant | 24/00 | Gold Orchid
Waist: 14" / Hip: 17.5" / Length: 36" / inseam: 28"
Up next, J. Crew!
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On a more solemn note. And the fact that I placed this message at the end of this post does not reflect how important I think it is.

I implore you to take a moment to order an individual home kit (free) or find a donation center to become a marrow/stem cell donor. One of Nina Louie's friends emailed me and asked me to reach out to friends who might become potential donors.

The success of a transplant is contingent upon finding a donor with matching Human Leukocyte Antigens (HLA) to the recipient. The impressive 10+ million people, mostly ethnically white, on the donor registry are not often a match for people of the following ethnicity or race: Black, Asian Pacific Islander (esp. those with roots in South Asia; there are only about 20,000 South Asians on the current registry), Native American, Hispanic/Latino, and Multi Heritage/Race.

For more, you can read this WSJ article about why South Asian patients have a more difficult time finding a donor.

I registered for the program back in college and will work to set up a drive locally. All that's required initially to determine compatibility is a cheek swab and while there is risk to being a marrow donor (FAQ here), I like to think we all would choose to save a life if given the choice.


Thank you for your attention.

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  6. Those white pants look so great for summer. If only they fit better!

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