Moleskin - No Moles Were Harmed


05/10/2017 09:00


here has recently been a resurgence amongst some of my circle in workwear; the hardwearing utility garments sported by generations of French roadsweepers and Ealing comedy warehousemen.

While utility wear is not exactly my style, there is a good reason that these garments endure and stand the test of time.


No, not the hides of short-sighted garden pests, but the densely woven, cotton fabric, shorn to a fine nap.

Moleskin Fabric Material

Moleskin is a ‘fustian’; a group of fabrics with a nap, like velvet and corduroy, who have their origins in medieval Europe. The dense weave of the cloth, combined with the brushed surface, made moleskin a favourite for hunting breeches, being pretty windproof and thornproof and less scratchy than wool.

French Moleskin Workwear

In France, moleskin jackets and trousers were dyed different colours to denote trades: the indigo ‘bleu de travail’ to denote manual labourers, black to denote carpenters, brown for metalworkers, while in Germany moleskin was dyed olive for army use.

Moleskin Workwear

By Victorian times, with great quantities of the cloth woven in Yorkshire, most English workmen would have sported moleskin in some form - jackets, waistcoats or trousers. Indeed Brunel and his cronies can be seen Empire-building, wearing moleskin stovepipe trousers and coats, a durable and practical choice while maintaining the dignity of their station with top hat, watch chain and cigar.

I’m pleased to say, no moles are harmed in the making of our trousers

- Lord Trousers

A few years ago, we stocked Moleskin Trousers only in loden green or stone, stalwart trews of the countryman or gamekeeper.

However, in the intervening years a huge resurgence in the popularity of fustians has seen us expand our range from trousers, to narrower-legged jeans, waistcoats and jackets and, this season, a practical moleskin overshirt. Not only have we developed a variety of garments but the colours of our trousers reflect our new found confidence in the brighter shades, mulberry red and purple. Flat-fronted and flattering, Peter Christian moleskins are a long way from their origins as navvy’s strides and, I’m pleased to say, no moles are harmed in the making of our trousers.


Lord Trousers sign off

Moleskin Pants
Moleskin Jeans
100% Cotton Moleskin Overshirt
Merlin Moleskin Vest