Gloria In Excelsis: Duck Head’s Gold Glory Chino

Astute readers will recall the Ivy Style high-rise/tapered leg project we had in development several years back. It was with Bill Thomas, founder of Bills Khakis, and right before the first sample was to be cut, things went a little haywire internally. Bill ended up at Duck Head, after the previous team, shall we say, fowled out. He didn’t forget the market interest in this particular style of khaki, and has produced something pretty close in the Gold Glory chino. It may not be the highest rise you can find, but at 11 inches, and in the spirit of the season, you could say it’s in excelsis.

Now nothing is for everyone. For starters, the Gold Glory’s made-in-the-USA price tag is $189. That may sound crazy, but as an Ivy devotee pointed out, Bills’ Khakis were $145 when introduced over a decade ago. As for the stats, on me the rise comes in at a tad over 11 inches and features an opening of 7 3/4 at the cuff. The pant tapers gradually from the thigh all the way down.

Here are the bullet points, according to Duck Head:

  • Made in USA
  • 100% 8.5 oz. American Made Cotton Twill
  • Pre-Washed
  • Classic Fit (Not full. Not slim)
  • Genuine Drill Cloth Pockets
  • Corozo Buttons
  • Button Loop Closure at Back Left Pocket
  • Reverse Fold Belt Loops
  • Industrial Grade YKK No. 5 Zipper
  • Antique Riveted Coin Pocket
  • Signature “Z” Stitch Inside Fly
  • Luggage Stitched Leather Patch
  • Fully Constructed Alterable Waist Band
  • Machine wash cold & tumble dry low

The Duck Head brand was founded in 1865, and became an icon for ’80s preps, especially in the South. We hope to tell that story soon. In the meantime, head over to Duck Head’s site to check out the Gold Glory chino, as well as its other offerings (which include a classic yellow label on the back). — CC


35 Comments on "Gloria In Excelsis: Duck Head’s Gold Glory Chino"

  1. The third photo clearly illustrates everything that is wrong with the cut of these trousers.

  2. Duck Head says these pants are
    “not full, not slim”.
    Not slim?????

  3. Well I’m slim…

  4. Jonathan Wertheim | December 17, 2018 at 3:14 pm |

    You’d have to be, to fit in those.

  5. Vern Trotter | December 17, 2018 at 4:31 pm |

    New meaning to the phrase, “Fits on like a glove.”

  6. Horray for Duck Head! They finally have all their ducks in a row.

  7. Wish you were sweaterless to appreciate the rise.

  8. Trevor Jones | December 17, 2018 at 6:32 pm |

    Just to aggravate even more, I see you’ve worn your bit loafers 😉

  9. That photo reminds me of the photos the Japanese
    were so fond of taking of American men’s posteriors in “Take Ivy”.

  10. “Bills’ Khakis were $145 when introduced over a decade ago” — ? The “Ivy devotee” is wrong.

    Firstly: Bills Khakis were introduced to the market way, way back in the early 90s. Bill was hands-on back in those days and built great relationships with (owners of) stores, including a few down South. Back in those days it was the M1 twill. Shortly thereafter a poplin.

    Secondly: When they were introduced (in the early 90s), they were not retailing for $145. Much less.

    I’m all for made-the-U.S.A. and I don’t mind paying $ for something that’s unique and well made. I’d give ’em a try.

  11. You must have skinny legs to fit into those khakis that are rather expensive. I pay around $100-120 (less in the sales or promotions) for khakis that are made in England from cloth woven in Yorkshire. They have a more generous leg and a higher rise.

  12. Old School Tie | December 18, 2018 at 5:51 am |

    Not tapered enough, I have had many roomier thighed models which fitted great on the rump but these skinny trousers always fit poorly. And no pleats, which for me is the final nail in the coffin – I know most of you will consider that heresy, but there you go.

  13. Interestingly, according to their Fit Guide there isn’t a pair measuring just over 11″ in rise and under 16″ at the hem. Did you alter the pair in the photos?

  14. Trace Bearden | December 18, 2018 at 8:50 am |

    I have so many old khaki trousers that I’ll probably never buy a new pair. They’re rumpled and worn and stained to varying degrees. And they’re baggy; I’m just a baggy guy. Cheever called his old chinos his “wash pants” — one of those inscrutable but somehow perfect Cheeverisms.

  15. I have an old, Heyday-era pair of pants (Berle) that feature a long(ish) rise. The taper is much more pronounced than this (Duck Head) pant. While the knee is around 20″ and the bottom is 17″, the thigh is, relative to modern-day skinny/hipster styling, larger. I’m sure the retailers had athletes in mind. How many football and lacrosse players could fit their thighs into the pants CC is wearing? The skinny/hipster take on Ivy has resulted in more confusion than clarity.

  16. * worthy of note that older Norman Hilton ads paired the Hampton blazer with a pair of “Oxford Bags”–not the exaggerated (enormous) version circa the 1920s. Probably a 23″ knee and 20-21″ bottom. If you’re aiming for old-school, Fogey-inspired, Merchant & Ivory trad, it’s a great look.

  17. ‘Merchant Ivory,’ rather.

  18. Is the cut the same for their other two less-expensive models? It’s ideal for a Texan who wears roper boots as well as loafers with his chinos.

  19. Yes is the answer to my own question. It helps to actually go to the site.

    The chart shows a 36 waist has a 11.25 rise and 16 opening.

  20. Pictures and the cost of these makes me appreciate my LLBean Double L chinos all the more. I don’t know if they pass the ivy snob test but they fit properly with my thinner frame in the Classic fit. The Natural fit may be better for beefier guys. Don’t let the “wrinkle-free” scare you. They come out of the dryer with a bit of rumple.

  21. I like these chinos a lot.

    The fit seems about right.

    I see way too many men wearing poorly fitting baggy “I don’t care how I look” chinos.

    So cool that Bill Thomas is still active in the industry – I thought for sure he would be retired living on an island somewhere. You can see Bill’s influence infused in these chinos.

  22. Preston Winthrop | December 18, 2018 at 11:46 pm |

    The negative comments renew my belief that there are gentlemen with good taste among the followers of this blog.

  23. Urban Chic Trad (UCT) inspires annoyance bordering on fury among the Fogey lot, eh ?

  24. A bunch of old out of shape guys complaining about not fitting into pants they haven’t tried on. Maybe they weren’t meant for your demographic to begin with.

  25. If the pictures tell the tale, they don’t fit the guy wearing them either. But your bitterness is duly noted, surf guy.

  26. @fred, the Fit Guide on the Gold Glory page says otherwise. I’m interested in trying these out either way.

  27. Sorry, I meant to address @whiskeydent, pardon.

  28. By 11 inch rise do you mean from the bottom of the waist band or from the top? If measuring from the top of the waist band I must have at least 12.5 inches to be comfortable. Cannot believe anyone coudl stand 11 inches down from the top

  29. An 8.5oz weight is not that great. “OK” perhaps, but nothing I’m going to spend $189 for. Should be at least 9 oz, like the LL Bean chinos I purchased around 10 years ago for about $50, which are only now starting to fray. Unfortunately, LL Bean doesn’t make them like that anymore. Also, they were probably made outside the US.

    Orvis has a 9.5 oz khaki which will probably be my next purchase. $109. Made in Malaysia, but at least it’s not China.

    Chatham Chinos used to make a 10.5 oz khaki for $90! That’s what I’m talking about! But for some reason, they’re only offering it in ACK red right now. Maybe because it’s off season. Not sure where they were made, either.

  30. Jonathan Wertheim | December 20, 2018 at 11:19 am |

    @Surf Ivy – I’m 26, and 155 pounds. Speak for yourself.

  31. Greg Parker Winston | December 20, 2018 at 3:07 pm |

    @Surf Ivy
    The gentleman in the photo is neither old nor out-of-shape, quite the contrary, and he looks absolutely horrible because of the bad cut of the trousers.

  32. I think it’s just an unflattering photo. I was at the Rowing Blazers/J. Press party that night and saw him in person.

  33. Huntington Crawford | December 20, 2018 at 10:42 pm |

    Did “Richard” (of WASP 101) ever wear any such unflattering, nay, unsightly trousers? CC, when you see that gentleman again, do give him such much needed sartorial advice.

  34. Anglophile Trad | December 21, 2018 at 12:51 am |

    When I saw those gigolo-cut chinos and those Goochies, I had to check my calendar to make sure it wasn’t April the 1st.

  35. Ugh, another brand from my youth tarnished by going skinny fit and way overpriced. When my mother was buying me Duckheads from Foley’s (a Houston department store chain bought out by Macy’s ~10 years ago) as a middle schooler in the late 80s, I guarantee she wasn’t paying the 1988 equivalent of $189 a pair, or anything close to that, and this was when Duckhead was still in its heyday of Southern prep popularity.

Comments are closed.