Spring 2012 Trend: Palazzo Pants

palazzo pants spring 2012

Photos: Imaxtree

Palazzo pants from Rachel Zoe, Yigal Azrouël, and Ralph Lauren

Move over skinny jeans. There's a new pair of pants in town, and these are way more comfortable. Welcome the palazzo. It’s about as far as one can get away from the slim silhouette that has been ubiquitous for years.

If, for you, palazzos evoke either dancewear or elastic-waisted comfort clothes, take a second look. For Spring 2012, designers used these super-voluminous pants as a substitute for maxi skirts.

Both Ralph Lauren’s and Tibi’s versions came in an array of pastel colors (those sorbet shades in themselves are a trend of the season), with the former in slinky satins that are perfect for evening.

Elie Tahari was a little saucier—fully sheer and made more floaty with micro-pleats, while Badgley Mischka had a similarly sexy pair in sheer-gold lace.

Christian Siriano’s paper-bag-waisted pants had a hint of Katharine Hepburn, and Yigal Azrouel did a white interpretation that was more streamlined and spare.

At Rachel Zoe, you might have missed the trend altogether were it not for her show notes: What looked to be a long white dress with a sash at the waist was, in fact, a white mousseline de soie tie-collar blouse and high-waisted palazzo pant.

Pants for a black-tie affair? Looks like the le smoking’s not your only option anymore.