Today is a lovely day in London (the day I write this, that is, July 3, not the day it’s published). Sunny, a light breeze, a few clouds drifting across the sky. 

It’s twenty-three degrees celcius. The kind of temperature where you can wear a T-shirt and shorts if you want, but also happily a linen jacket and tie. 

It’s weather you get on a good spring or summer’s day in London. Much hotter days, 30 degrees or above, are rare. 

 

 

Clothes for that kind of weather are a whole category of their own. Clothes whose driving purpose is coolness, while trying to retain as much elegance as possible. 

If I didn’t go to Florence for Pitti every June, or often travel to Naples in the summer, I don’t think I’d own many of these clothes. Sagan loafers – for example – would be a style choice more than a functional one.

But I’m glad I do. That week in Florence, driven by pure survival, plus Naples and perhaps the family summer holiday, are enough to justify a separate batch of clothes for that very hot weather. 

And less selfishly, it means I have more personal, practical advice to offer readers living in Italy right now. Or in the tropical humidity of Hong Kong. Or the baking streets of New York.

 

 

The earthy, tonal summer outfit pictured here on a 35-degree day in Florence is a good example. 

I find I can cope with anything up to 40 degrees as long as the fabrics and light and breathable and – most importantly – there is free flow of air around the neck and ankles. 

There’s a lot of blood running close to the surface of the skin there. Wrists too of course – but I’m not about to push my sleeves back Miami Vice-style. 

There are some more details on these points in this piece from Naples

 

 

The jacket is my Caccioppoli wool/silk/linen from Biagio Granata. As mentioned in my original review, it is too short and a little big on the front, but otherwise a good fit. 

Unfortunately – as a brief update – I still haven’t received the trousers for it.

The tweed jacket has arrived, but while it fits well around the shoulders, it is too tight and the vents gape. It’s not really wearable. Hard really to recommend Biagio on that basis. 

In better news, I was entirely wrong about the cloth of this jacket: it does work well as an odd jacket rather than part of a suit. 

It feels quite sleek up close, and more like a suiting. But at any distance, that is far outweighed by the white slubbiness running through it.

I’ve found that before – that sometimes it’s hard to get perspective on your own clothes until you wear them a few times, perhaps see them reflected, or get the odd comment.  

 

 

The shirt is a one-piece collar style from Marol. I’ll do a fuller review on it and Marol more generally at a later point. 

For now, I’d only comment that I think the one-piece collar works best in an outfit like this – when everything is fairly subtle, when the collar is something you’d only notice when close up, and it feels summery and relaxed. 

A one-piece collar feels like a holiday shirt to me, essentially, and I think is therefore most at home in a suitably relaxed outfit. 

 

 

The trousers are an old pair of cream linen, made as part of a suit by Kent Haste & Lachter. The jacket isn’t wearable anymore unfortunately, but the trousers are – and the colour of the linen is lovely. Just enough contrast with the white shirt. 

Overall, as readers will know by now, I find colour combinations like this the most satisfying: not bright, not loud, with a natural feel. 

It feels like the word ‘refined’ is appropriate: you’ve refined and distilled everything you like down to simple, subtle combinations. 

Perhaps the word ‘sophisticated’ as well. That’s far more of a value term, of course, but it is harder to get tonal combinations just right.

 

 

The brown folio is the Russian calf version of the folio I developed with Charlie at Equus Leather. Details here. They are available from him, made to order. 

The shoes are the string Sagans from Baudoin & Lange, in dark-brown suede. I think the string bow sits better, personally, on a thin shoe like this than tassels. 

The tortoiseshell sunglasses are from EB Meyrowitz – full article on those, and why you should pay for good advice, here

And the handkerchief is from Tom Ford. I think it came from Century 21 in New York, a long time ago. I find patterns like this – large and blotchy – rather useful as they never clash with the patterns of a tie, shirt or jacket. 

 

 

Photography: Jamie Ferguson @jkf_man

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Ali

Just a curiosity Simon, how come the Kent Haste jacket is not wearable anymore? Still preference has changed since perhaps?

robert kubek

Hey Simon-
Agree regarding the Kent Haste patch pockets. They are almost cargo pant sized. I don’t believe you feel the same regarding your Caliendo jacket breast patch pockets, correct ? I like those very much.

robert

Thanks for quick response. Appreciate the archived articles so very much. Great resource for us out here in Bespoke cyberspace.

Chris

Lovely look. Our of interest why do you find the KHL suit jacket unwearable now? (I’ve always enjoyed those articles of yours – catching up with pieces a couple of years down the line.)

Anon

Such a change from what I’m seeing at the moment ….men in shorts , wearing grubby t shirts, dirty trainers and socks !!

Incidentally , I find odd that people wear double breasted jackets in the summer heat .
I’ve noticed this on yourself as well as Italian gentlemen , particularly Luca Rubinacci.

In addition, from my own experience , a good waist fit is essential on summer trousers as wearing a belt makes the waist area feel heavy and ‘hot’.

Anonymous

Nice outfit.Cool…my highest accolade!
Looks like you elected for the rubber sole option on your Sagans….might just be shadow though in the photo.

Anonymous

How does the rubber soles version of the classic compare to the normal version?

Anonymous

Far too shiny for me I am afraid.

Anonymous

I like the overall look but not the length of the coat or the buttoning point; too short and too high.

Trousers look smashing though.

Anonymous

Didn’t spot any comment about the buttoning point.

Ben

I’ve two jackets in a similar fabric and love how they reflect light. Certainly distinct from the polyester and some recent runway stuff while suggesting a coolness that’s welcomed in the summer.

Quite enjoy this outfit generally. I’m a big fan of one-piece collars, especially in white: really clean. I don’t think you’re ever getting those trousers delivered.

Anonymous

What amount of lining do you recommend/use for summer suits?
Full lining? Half? Quarter? Unlined?

Adam

Looks cracking Simon. Superb work.

Jason

Simon,
More than anything, these photos illustrate the absolute importance of cut. The jacket is way too short and consequently it’s difficult to get beyond that.
That said, the colour combo is good but stylistically I find these clutch bags very fey. Charlie at Equus is a genius, he made me a fabulous wallet but when it comes to bags, I think only brief cases, attaches or totes work. Unless of course we are climbing Everest or going for a picnic then a backpack is acceptable.
Regards,
Jason

David

Hi Simon, just curious – which of Drake’s current suits would work better for NYC’s summer heat? – They have a tan cotton twill suit and a tan cotton/linen solaro currently. The latter is 57% cotton / 43% linen. I presume the twill would be more comfortable in England or Ireland when the temperature’s in the low 20s?

Anonymous

Solaro is not cotton/linen Simon, it is wool.

Anonymous

I thought perhaps you might have pointed this out to your poster.

Nigel C

Great article. I read the Casual Suits post on Wednesday with much enjoyment. I commented, and believe, that casual suits do work in a range of settings provided you get the accessories right – Luca Rubinacci does this so well. Looking at the wonderfully simple elegance of this ensemble I realise, however, that a casual suit is much more difficult to pull off with this level of aplomb. A reminder to remain as open minded as possible I guess! Best wishes N

Triskel

Hi Simon, I’m sorry if this comment comes over, on this site, as near-heresy but I am a bit concerned about your wearing this jacket notwithstanding your comment about length and fit. That is for two reasons – first, at the price you presumably paid I think one can reasonably expect a very high standard not only of make and materials but also fit (after all, work and materials, though not the personal choice in bespoke, are available in ready to wear – without taking the risk of how things will turn our). Second, and perhaps of greater concern, because of how you feel; I know that when I have worn things which aren’t quite right I can’t help thinking about that and it spoils other aspects of my day – but we’re all different on this.

David

Simon, in what cases do you think it’s acceptable or fair to ask for your money back? Always a tricky one, I assume…

Phil

Really interesting post as always – love the colour of that jacket. What are your views on seersucker as a cooling jacket fabric to wear in the summer heat? My biggest issue when it comes to taking jackets on holiday is how to deal with creases on the plane etc. My understanding is that this is less of an issue with seersucker given that it’s effectively creased anyway.

(Oh, and I stumbled upon that street in the photographs (Borgo Degli Albizi) when I was in Florence last month. Beautiful).

REUVEN L LAX

I have a navy seersucker suit that has served me quite well – I can definitely recommend! The navy makes it much smarter, but the fabric nicely subverts the formality. Loro Piana makes a beautiful light grey-blue seersucker as well, but it’s not cheap….

Andy Poupart

I really like this look, Simon. The trousers, especially, are excellent. I would not have realized that they are linen from the photos. I’m guessing you hadn’t sat down in them yet!

I have several of the one-piece collar shirts from Marol and I love them. I had mine made without a collar button so they are inherently casual. I find they work very well under a wide variety of jackets or suit jackets. Apparently, I’m the only person who orders his one-piece collar shirts with french cuffs and a chest pocket. But that’s why bespoke is so satisfying. Anyway, I’ll be interested to read your review, when you publish it.

Peter Zottolo

I see what you mean about cream trousers now; they look fantastic and are wonderfully subtle. Now I know what to commission for next summer…

Daniel

Actually, I do not find the jacket too short as it looks to be more for casual wear. It looks good. At this stage, who do you still recommend for bespoke from the italian side? Still recommend solito?

Patrick Bateman

Hi Simon,

Another great article and definitely my favourite outfit that you’ve put together for sometime. I’ll definitely try and recreate the look!

Anonymous

Simon –

Particularly elegant summer presentation, and thanks for the advice on staying cool in warmer temperatures.

To focus on a couple of details:

1) the one-piece collar makes a major difference to my eye — critical to softening up the entire perception even in a photograph and is probably even more effective in person.

2) great advice on the versatility of the “blotchy” pocket square — initially, I would purchase silk pocket squares whose patterns mirrored those of ties I might select. Over time, and with the help of a savvy sales associate, I realized that it really did not matter whether I liked the design of the pocket square or not when it was laid flat as long as the colors were complementary to the jacket, tie, shirt, or sweater in question. And larger patterns tended to add more interest when constrained to the pocket. Hermes was brilliant at this for a time, but seem to have returned to their geometric basics based on what I have seen online.

Anonymous

Excellent outfit! Very cool and absolutely suited to the summer cities of Italy (albeit on holiday or business).
In relation to your ensemble I spent some time last week going through my own wardrobe, distilling the elements that worked from those that don’t. Usually I hang trousers separately (to match independently with various jackets) but decided to match each trouser with a jacket (as a working ‘pair’). As a process it provided some new, interesting results – items, through cut, colour, or cloth – that I didn’t think would match paired well whilst I rejected some of the ‘pair’ assumptions which simply didn’t work. As with your linen trousers some extraneous suit items were placed, and worked, with separate items.
I understand how you feel about the jacket but it looks good – please don’t reject it as an option.
FYI GQ have just run an article re. Badouin’s loafers (a year after PS?).

Jim

This is great looking outfit Simon. The jacket is not too short. You have a tendency to wear jackets that are too long and baggy, which end up making you look heavier than you are. A particular recent example of this being in the photos of you with the cordwainers.

The outfit in this article emphasises your svelte physique, which is no bad thing.

I’m also glad that you have acknowledged your mistake in thinking that this jacket wouldn’t work as an odd jacket.

Kevin

Despite any shortcomings of the jacket, I absolutely love the chest pocket. Also like the dab of chartreuse green on the pocket square; that color green is one of those underrated colors that seems to go with everything.

Anonymous

Simon

Lovely outfit. I can see the benefit of the lightweight cloth. However, I assume it must crease like mad. Have you found this is the case?

Ian

Hi Simon,

A bit off-topic but can you please recommend an english tailor (house) for a a sport jacket? Looking at your site suggests that you prefer Italians for sport jackets but I prefer to stay local (London). I’m interested in commissioning two sport jackets (navy and pale grey) to use with odd trousers (and denim ideally) but not sure where to go. I’m in my 30’s, tall and fairly athletic in my upper body with relatively skinny legs. My workplace doesn’t require a full suit but a jacket is essential. I currently use RTW suits and jackets from Brooks Brothers and G&H but I think that its time for me to get some bespoke (or MTM?)

Ian

Sam

Anglo-Italian MTM?

Ian

Thanks Simon (and Sam). I think that I will check out Thom Sweeney and Anglo Italian.

I was at G&H the other day and they suggested their MTM service as an option (apparently they have some less structured blocks made in Italy) – any thoughts? I also went to A&S but not sure if it will be a good fit to be fair (worried about the drape).

Thank you Simon for this great website – very helpful!

Daniel C

There are weeks on end where it’s over 35 here in Adelaide, and they call it a Mediterranean climate. A really cold day, where people remark that “it’s freezing”, would be 14 or 15, so I love your articles on warm weather options. When it gets past 45 though, nothing works and a thawb starts to sound like a good idea .. our just draping any old white sheet over one’s head!

Caleb C

Simon,

Do you find yourself wearing the string Sagans or the plain ones more often?

-Caleb

Matt

I remember thinking (and saying) that this jacket definitely works very well on its own. I’m glad you’ve come around to this way of thinking as this is one of my favourites of the outfits that you have featured lately.

Fit seems good other than it appears to curve upwards at the rear.

Stephan

Dear Simon,
You mentioned that the jacket that matches the trousers you wear here is no longer wearable – why is that? Has your size changed or has the jacket deteriorated and if so how? Generally, what’s your advice on suits in which one part is no longer wearable?
Thanks,
Stephan

Stephan

Ha, missed that, sorry. I did read through the comments, just missed the one I was looking for apparently.

Gohan

Hi Simon,

Since it is my first comment, first of all i would like to thank you for all the contents and studies on your blog, i get tons of impressions and new ideas.

Currently, i am planning to have a bespoke jacket from holland sherry fabric for summer and autumn. I have plenty of navy jackets therefore i would like to try another color such as naturals as tans or browns.

I choose linen, wool, silk mixture Holland Sherry Crystal Spring collection cloth because of its weight and the range of collection, i am stuck between 478902 (tan/mid brown) and 478903 (dark brown). Since this will be my first jacket on natural browns, which one do you recommend ? and i also like to ask you if i should leave these plain hopsack cloths and go for more checked cloth perhaps? Many thanks in advance!

Christoph

Simon, apologies if only partially relevant for this article. I am looking to commission a similar jacket as this one; for all seasons, a kind of perfect travel jacket; casual but still more formal than just a shirt. Which tailor would be your first choice for it today?

Anonymous

Simon,
I’m not sure if I’ve posted this in the relevant article but I was wondering if you have any experience with or can give any advise on Sartoria Cuomo in terms of their service and quality?
Thank you.