Men’s pants in the 1930s were high waisted, full around the hip, and had long column-like wide legs. That wide leg trend began in the 20s and gradually narrowed down into the 50s, while the high waists lasted until the early 1960s. Plaid, herringbone, check, tweed, windowpane, and stripes were all patterns men in the 30s wore for both business and casualwear. Some younger men’s pants had wide “Hollywood” waistbands and a pleated front for extra fullness.
Finding 1930s vintage or vintage reproduction pants in your size can be difficult. However, with the right modern pants, you can approximate the 1930s look. Choose wide leg or classic fit pants that come up to your belly button (you may need to order up 1 or 2 sizes from your “normal” pants size). Avoid skinny, low rise modern fits. A pleated waist will help create fullness. Pant legs should be wide, and cuffing the hem was popular. Men’s 30s pants matched a suit jacket or were paired with a contrasting sport coat in a darker color: grey, tan, ivory, and navy are all great vintage choices.
Blue jeans and overalls were mostly worn by working-class men. Knickers or plus fours were worn by boys and men playing sports such as golf. Scroll to the bottom of the page or click here to jump to our gallery of 1930s men’s trousers.
We handpicked the following trousers for their high waisted rise and wide legs as well as color and patterns associated with 1930s men’s fashions.