J.Crew’s Top Secret $288 Chinos: Are they Really worth it?

Michael Williams over at A Continuous Lean had a very interesting post today on J. Crew’s new chinos.  The sticker price for these chinos are $288. Are they really worth it? Let’s see what Mike has to say:

You’re looking at the most underrated pair of khakis on the market.

Over the past few weeks I’ve noticed something interesting relating to these particular J.Crew chinos. After randomly talking to three people who work for three different clothing companies (who are not J.Crew) I began to notice a pattern. Curious, I had asked each of these people a simple question: “Who makes your pants?” One by one they all told me (in a hushed voice, seriously) that they are from J.Crew. It was almost as if these pants were some sort of speakeasy and they didn’t want the rumor to get out. I understand that they didn’t want to be seen as a defector, but this was an amusing situation considering we are talking about a pair of cotton pants.

All of the intrigue around these khakis led me to the J.Crew Liquor Store to take a look for myself. I ended up leaving with my own pair and have gone to wear them roughly 25 times in the span 30 days. I had to ask myself had I joined a secret club of amazing pants?

Selvedge is a nod to the early 19th century, when fabric was woven on narrow looms and the edges were sewn together to create a “self edge” that helped prevent fraying (a colored thread was often incorporated to help the mill tell fabrics apart). We continue this great tradition with a small-batch, rigid cotton twill that’s woven in Japan. The dense, unwashed fabric will slowly fade, break-in and “whisker,” just like a pair of jeans. (The more you wear them, the better they get. Good thing they’re built to last.)

  • Wallace & Barnes slim fit.
  • Sits below waist.
  • Straight through hip, slim through thigh and leg.
  • 15 3/4″ leg opening (based off size 32/32).
  • Cotton.
  • Button fly.
  • Off-seam pockets, back button-flap pockets.
  • Machine wash.
  • Import.
  • Select stores.