How to wear corduroy for Fall 2019

The new crop of cords are bolder than you remember.

The new crop of cords are bolder than you remember

It didn't happen overnight. Slowly, over the last few years, more and more designers have been incorporating corduroy — most associated with a retro-'70s aesthetic, and last widely popular in the mid '90s — into their runway collections. Then, a handful of street style stars and celebrities started to embrace the textured fabric, putting fresh spins on a once-tired textile. 

And now, it seems like retailers at multiple price points are betting big on corduroy, offering a wide selection of styles and colours on their fall fashion line-up. In short: It's never been easier, or more tempting, to add a splash of modern corduroy into your wardrobe. 

Here are five ways to wear the trend that feel new, and not retro-tinged. 


The ridges on the surface of corduroy (the vertical ones that makes it look distinct from velvet) are referred to as wales. It's measured in a per-inch basis, where a higher number means a finer cord; 11 wales per inch is standard, but some fabrics can be 4-wale. Wide wale corduroy, which also tends to be thicker and more substantive, is a fun, more casual way to wear the look this season.  

The Group by Babaton Graydon Jacket, $148, Aritzia

Twik Corduroy Mock-Neck Sweater, $39, Simons

Suit up

Cute corduroy trousers — both cropped and wide-legged — are always a good khaki or denim substitute. But why not double your impact by wearing a corduroy suit (or perfectly-matching shirt and pant combo)? In an eye-catching colour and relaxed fit, a textured set can impart plenty of sartorial attitude even when styled with a plain t-shirt or basic turtleneck. And, you could always wear each piece solo as well. 

Oak + Fort Jacket 3904, $88, and Skirt 3818, $58, Oak + Fort

Hilary MacMillan Corduroy Long Blazer, $225, and High Waisted Pants, $175, Hilary MacMillan

J.Crew Parke Blazer, $289, and Stovepipe Pant, $175, J.Crew

Jump start

Jumpsuits and coveralls continue to be popular this season. Made in colourful, medium-weight corduroy, they're equal parts durable and stylish. If you already have a pair in a denim or twill fabric, consider a fine-wale version a great way to update the utilitarian trend for fall.  

H&M Corduroy Overall, $69.99, H&M

Missguided Cord Utility Jumpsuit, $73, Missguided

Pastel vision

Neon-bright corduroys are also trending, but there's something more joyful (and not too youthful) about the prettier pastel and creamy-neutral hues, which are also easier to incorporate into many everyday wardrobes. In short: it's time to look beyond black, navy and brown when it comes to corduroy fashion.  

Old Navy Plus-Size Snap-Front No-Peek Corduroy Tunic, $42.99, Old Navy

Uniqlo High Waisted Corduroy Wide Cropped Pants, $39.90, Uniqlo

Outer limits

A stylish corduroy trench or worker jacket is never a bad idea! But this season it's sporty, puffer jackets made in corduroy that are grabbing our attention in particular. From printed corduroy jackets to insulated-cotton coats, these matte, textured puffers simply look cozier and feel more appealingly tactile than your average nylon or polyester-blend outerwear fabric.

Madewell Corduroy Puffer Jacket, $219.47, Nordstrom 

Twik Corduroy Puffer Jacket, $99, Simons

Truc Nguyen is a Toronto-based writer, editor and stylist. Follow her at @trucnguyen.


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