Corduroy is the blue collared cousin of velvet. Corduroy is typically made of cotton and is woven with loose threads that are then cut to create a pile. Most corduroy has ridges, or wales, of this pile that run the length of the fabric. These wales cause the fabric to look as if there are faint stripes in the cloth.
Corduroy first became popular in France and England in the 1700’s, where it was named “corde du roi” which in English means cord of the king. At this time, corduroy was made with silk and was one of the most luxurious fabrics around. In the late 1800’s, corduroy made its way to the United States where it changed forever. Americans realized that corduroy was a durable fabric and started making the cloth in cotton. This lowered the cost of corduroy and ultimately became a popular choice amongst the working class. Corduroy did make a comeback however in the 1900’s as designers such as Gianni Versace incorporated the fabric into their fall/winter collections.
Today corduroy is found in all kinds of clothing such as jackets, pants, and suits. I’ve always loved how corduroy clothing can accent any outfit by giving it a very masculine/work wear appeal. If I had to recommend one corduroy item, it would definitely be a pair of pants. “Cord’s” as us westerns like to refer to them, are probably one of the most versatile fall/winter trousers you can have in your closet. Look for colours such as deep brown, maroon, beige, and grey and I promise you will be wearing them any chance you get.
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