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Friday, June 28, 2019

Annals of Dockers

As previously chronicled in these volumes, Dockers has undergone a resurgence in the past several years. Frankly, they now make some of the finest mass-produced pants. Indeed I've owned some Dockers these past few years that have fit me -- gulp -- perfectly? Recently Dockers has been experimenting with stretchy materials, and I acquired a pair of breathtaking trousers -- rugged and casual yet refined enough for work. Comfy pants with a nice stretchy waist but also a well cut silhouette. The problem? I don't even know which pants I actually purchased, because the Dockers catalog has become absurdly massive, with different styles that are really just slight variations of one another, to the extent that one feels like the entire multiverse of pants is represented in the Dockers line.  Additionally, the naming is extremely confusing and inconsistent, and I would bet a chicken wing or two that the pants are sometimes mislabeled.  A quick rundown of just some of the styles from the Dockers website:

Dockers® Alpha Khaki Pants With Smart 360 Flex™, Slim Tapered Fit
94% Cotton, 6% Elastane

Dockers® Alpha Chino Pants With Smart 360 Flex™, Tapered Fit
95% Cotton, 5% Elastane

Downtime Khaki Pants With Smart 360 Flex™, Slim Tapered Fit
96% Cotton, 4% Elastane

Original Khaki All Seasons Tech™ Pants, Straight Fit
60% Cotton, 37% Polyester, 3% Elastane

A note on Elastane: I'm all for stretch material in pants, but it undoubtedly complicates things. How do I find the perfect fit now with all these Elastane possibilities?  Perhaps a pant with a 38'' waist is ok with 2% Elastane, but perhaps a 36" waist is better with 7% Elastane? 

I recently ordered 34 pairs of Dockers on Amazon to compare.  But the styles, as listed on the Amazon website, don't necessarily match the naming conventions used on the Dockers website, and there are a multitude of fabric ratio permutations: 92% cotton and 8% Elastane, for instance, although such a permutation is nowhere to be found on the "official" roster.  

What is one to do? The search for the perfect pant continues...