What’s the difference between 5-pocket casual pants and other types of pants?


5-pocket pants

5-Pocket Pants

Several fit, fabric, and design elements set 5-pocket pants apart from other casual pants and dress trousers. These are the key ways in which they differ, so you can best decide how you want to design and style them.

Casual Design

Pockets: As you might expect, 5-pocket pants have five pockets: two rear, two front hip, and one watch or coin pocket inside the right front hip pocket. Chinos and dress pants have no more than four pockets (two front and two rear), and they are generally discreet, whereas the pockets on 5-pocket pants tend to be a little more visible.

Metal Hardware: Instead of the horn buttons you find on chinos and dress pants, 5-pocket pants have metal tack buttons. They are also reinforced by metal rivets at the corners of the three front pockets. These metal details give the pants a more utilitarian, workwear look that echos the functional aspect of the original 5-pocket pants created by Levi Strauss in the late 1800s. Our durable rivets, tack buttons, and zippers are all made to last by Riri in Italy.

Denim Waistband & Hem: The denim waistband found on 5-pocket pants looks a regular button-through closure, but it has no extra stitching around the bottom of the waistband piece and no split back, both of which are features of chinos and other types of casual pants. The hem is about 5/16″ wide and secured with a chain stitch, making it much narrower than the hem found on casual pants and dress pants, which is about 1.5″.

The Perfect Custom 5-Pocket Fit

A 5-pocket pant typically has a straight fit through the leg. The waist should sit at the hip bones, a bit lower than your chinos, and allow 2-3 fingers to fit inside the waistband but still sit in place without a belt. The inseam length you choose should be the same as your usual retail size. We recommend creating a fit that’s specific to your 5-pocket pant—our guide can help.

Hard-Wearing Fabrics

The original 5-pocket pants were made from heavy-duty denim that could stand up to the physical work of the men who wore them. And while you may not be doing any mining or carpentry when you wear your own 5-pocket pants, they still look and wear best when they’re made from heavier casual fabrics. Dress pant fabrics, which are most often made from wool and wool blends with materials like silk, linen, and cashmere, have a gentler drape and weigh less despite offering a broad range of options in terms of warmth and breathability. Chinos are typically found in cottons and cotton blends and are lighter, smoother, and have a more “crisp” look and feel. The weight of heavier fabrics adds structure and durability to 5-pocket pants, and more pronounced textures add visual weight as well, so the bolder visual impact of the pants’ design elements are properly balanced. Denims are a no-brainer, of course, but corduroys and heavier moleskins are also great options for 5-pocket pants.