By now your news feed is likely flush with pictures of NBA star Kevin Love frollicking around LA with his knockout girlfriend, swimsuit model Kate Bock. Here’s Kevin and Kate driving a vintage convertible; here they are having a healthy breakfast in their amazing house; look, there’s the lovely couple gazing longingly into each other’s eyes while canoodling in a plush booth at Musso & Frank. It’s a new campaign from Banana Republic, and it sure makes being a handsome NBA champ and a gorgeous Sports Illustrated model look fabulous. It’s enough to make you puke, really.
Hopefully, you stopped hurling long enough to notice the clothes — kinda the point of the whole thing. And we gotta admit, Banana’s fall line looks pretty stylin’; in addition to BR staples like chinos and dress shirts, the campaign also shows Mister Love rocking some pieces that don’t pop into your mind when you think “Banana Republic,” like underwear, suede jackets, and checked Italian wool suits.
But we’re here to testify about BR’s new line of Rapid Movement chinos. Launched a few months ago, we finally got our legs into some, and haven’t really taken them off since. Stretchy and water- and stain-resistant, they’re both comfortable and practical. The stretchy material provides a ton of give-and-take, and holds its shape well; fact is, between the stretch and the resistance to spills and stains we’re getting at least a couple days’ wear out of ours, and after multiple washes thus far they’ve yet to lose their shade or elasticity.
And unlike pure, 100 percent cotton chinos — unparalleled for comfort but notorious for losing their charm after a few months — these feature 8 percent polyester and 2 percent spandex. So while there’s a certain amount of synthetic feel, it’s worth it for the stretch, mess-resistance, and wear-after-wear longevity.
The slim-cut trend has forced stretch/performance materials into the forefront; it seems like everyone from Bonobos to Volcom has released a line of stretch chinos lately. Yet, ridiculously good-looking people in yack-worthy ad campaigns be damned, these BR Rapid Movements are our new favorites for both the office and the weekend. Like all BR pants, they come in four cuts: the Fulton Skinny, the Aiden Slim, the Emerson straight, and the Mason Tapered. All are comfortable and well-made; we find the Aidens to be the most stylish for work, and the Masons to be the most comfortable for kicking back.
Besides typical blacks and grey, Rapid movement chinos come in a variety of colors, including military green, a slick baby blue, and a rich, deep burgundy that’s remarkably held onto its purplish shade after multiple fluff-and-fold drop-offs. [$98; bananarepublic.com]
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