striped pantsuit street style

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Let me start this post by saying that women’s pantsuits are inherently rock ‘n’ roll. And any pantsuit outfit idea you may have is going to be so badass it will deserve to be tattooed on a sailor’s biceps. Because this humble two-piece ensemble’s origins represent a total rejection of societal norms, just as much as The New York Dolls’ cross-dressing displays or Bowie’s magical makeup.

This is all because there was a time when women did not wear pants. Like at all. Not even on those Sunday mornings when you’re so hungover you wear sunglasses to protect your eyes from your refrigerator’s light (please tell me I’m not alone in this). My grandmother remembers this pre-pants time and, at 92, can still recall the day she first bought a pair (which wasn’t until she was able to pay for them herself). Slacks were once reserved for men’s fashion and females who chose to wear the pants were seen as off-beat.

That being said, I can’t deny that there are edgier ways to wear a pantsuit than how our lovely lady politicians often do. And as we seem to be entering yet another era in which some expect women’s wardrobe choices to stick to old-school norms, I think it’s only fitting to look to new ways to wear this enduring duo. So please check out some of my favorite pantsuit outfit ideas below, each pushing the envelope in their own way.

How To Wear Pantsuits, According To Street Style Stars

velvet pantsuit street style

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Skipping the blouse is a surefire way to knock the “safe-for-work” out of this look. And, in other, more practical news, this option does allow for ample statement necklace room.

pantsuit with red sneakers

A silky patterned scarf seems less traditional tied leisurely over a graphic tee and matched with sporty sneakers.

pantsuit with black vans

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Speaking of sneakers, Vans are pretty kick-ass options, too.

pantsuit with converse

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As are Converse, of course.

rouje black blazer

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A graphic tee and messy tresses say “Patti Smith was here.”

Exaggerated classic “power” accessories (Mr. T-level gold chain, oversized cat-eye sunnies, and an ultra-structured stachel here) are playful without playing around.

Bonus Vintage Round!

bianca jagger white pantsuit

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Bianca Jagger, slaying in every way possible.

Debbie Harry, of Blondie, mastering effortless slouchiness.

nico pant suit times square

Annnnd Velvet Underground’s Nico, fusing pantsuits and power-clashing for one perfect lesson in rock ‘n’ roll outfitting 101.

So simple, so rad. And so easy to find in thrift shops! Have you tried out this trend yet?