THE HISTORY OF OUR FAVORITE RUGGED MATERIAL
Cargo pants, a staple in both the military and fashion worlds, have a long history that stretches back to the 1930s. Originally designed for British soldiers, these pants were functional, featuring pockets for field dressings, maps, and other essentials. The design caught on with the U.S. military, particularly paratroopers, who appreciated the additional pocket space for carrying ammunition and rations on the move.
The transformation of cargo pants from military uniform to fashion staple is a testament to their practicality and enduring appeal. In the 1990s, cargo pants surged in popularity in the civilian world, particularly among hip-hop artists. This trend led to their widespread adoption in mainstream fashion. The large, square-shaped patch pockets, typically located on the thigh, became a defining feature. These pockets were not only functional but also added a distinctive aesthetic to the pants.
TUPAC IN A CAMO + CARGO COMBO
The evolution of cargo pants continued as designers like Ralph Lauren introduced them in various fabrics and colors, often with unique embellishments. Cargo pockets found their way onto jeans, skirts, shorts, and even shirt sleeves, further solidifying their place in the fashion industry.
Today, cargo pants have transcended their military origins and are viewed as a versatile and timeless option for a range of activities and styles. At PHIPPS, our incorporation of cargo pockets into both our Hard Work Pants and Crag Pants builds on our legacy and curiosity toward the history and future of workwear and Americana.
Whether holding camping tools or cell phones, cargo pants offer a blend of comfort, utility, and style. Their journey from the trenches to the streets illustrates how practical design can evolve into a fashion statement, making cargo pants a unique piece in the history of clothing.