Culottes are a type of women’s trousers that hang like a skirt but are actually pants. Originally, culottes were worn by upper-class men in Europe during the middle ages and were tight-fitting knee or calf-length pants. The modern version, however, is markedly different. Today’s culottes are cut to resemble a skirt, with a wide leg that typically falls just below the knee or sometimes longer, creating a full, flowing silhouette.
This garment became popular as women’s fashion in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, especially as women began to engage in activities such as horseback riding, cycling, and other sports that demanded greater freedom of movement than skirts provided. In the 20th century, culottes were reintroduced and gained popularity as a fashion-forward, comfortable, and practical choice for women.
Culottes are versatile and can be styled in a variety of ways, making them suitable for both casual and professional settings. They are often made from light, breathable fabrics in the summer and heavier, warmer materials in the winter. The distinctive wide-leg style of culottes offers the elegance of a skirt with the practicality and comfort of trousers, making them a unique and stylish choice for those looking to diversify their wardrobe.