Grey corduroy jacket worn under a tweed overcoat

 

This latest article in our Wardrobe Building series is on sports jackets, odd jackets, or just jackets. Whatever you want to call them. 

It’s an area with little understanding. I loved the exchange in The Times that a reader highlighted recently. Apparently someone wrote in, suggesting that with all the video meetings going on, brands should start selling just the top half of suits. Another reader pointed out that these already existed. They are called jackets. 

So, here is my suggestion of five essential jackets for a modern wardrobe. 

As ever, these capsule collections cannot suit every person and working environment. So I have based it on my lifestyle, which is a mix of formal and casual; and then throughout, I’ve suggested ways in which this can be tweaked to be more formal or less formal. more Summer or Winter. 

Some readers will be seeking jackets that can effectively replace suits to the office. Others will be wanting to dress up a T-shirt and jeans wardrobe. Hopefully this method will help both. 

Throughout, I have linked to other PS articles that contain examples of these jackets and details on them. It’s also worth looking through the whole ‘Jackets’ category of the site. 

I haven’t included specific cloth recommendations, just because the number and variety of them would mean that the list would be out of date within weeks. But hopefully there are enough visual examples to enable you to seek out your own. 

 

Casual, wool navy jacket, from Solito
Smart, cashmere navy jacket from Steven Hitchcock
Summer, hopsack navy jacket from Elia Caliendo

1 Navy 

Navy should also be the first choice for a smart jacket. And for a more casual one, I’d argue it should still be in the top five. 

A smart jacket could be in cashmere or a wool/cashmere mix. A more casual one could be in a plain wool, or a hairier wool like tweed. 

A smart summer version is easy: hopsack. Classic and simple. A more casual summer version is harder, but there are nice navy linen herringbones out there. Anglo-Italian has a nice one.

 

Dark-brown Harris Tweed jacket from Elia Caliendo
More formal dark-brown jacket, from Shibumi
Summer dark-brown jacket, from Solito

2 Dark brown

Dark brown should probably be the first choice for a casual jacket.

Brown and green are the more casual, rural equivalents of the city’s navy and grey, and brown is a little easier to wear than green – even with brown shoes.

A lovely casual option is brown tweed, such as my Harris Tweed above. A smarter version would usually be a colder shade of brown, with finer material, like this Rubinacci cashmere jacket. Or perhaps have other smarter colours mixed in, like grey. An example being my Zegna wool jacket above, made by Shibumi. 

In the summer, dark brown is lovely in wool/silk/linen materials, like the Solito jacket pictured. 

Casual summer options are tricker. They are in general for summer jackets – it’s one reason people wear a lot of overshirts and safari jackets, or something like this Mandarin

But there are nice browns out there – if you want something that’s very casual, to wear with jeans and so on, then look at the lighter linens (9oz or below, not 11oz) and things like washed linen. 

 

Smart, checked grey jacket, from Saman Amel
Grey herringbone tweed jacket, from The Anthology
Brown/grey summer jacket, from Biagio Granata

3 Mid-grey

Although grey is a classic colour for formal tailoring, it’s normally used more for suits and trousers. This is partly because grey goes with so many things, and that’s more useful in a trouser than a jacket. 

That said, it can make a useful smart jacket. And having some pattern helps – at the least a herringbone, and perhaps ideally a check, as with the Saman Amel jacket above. Plain grey is trickier – I’ve found my Steven Hitchcock jacket less versatile than I hoped. 

With more casual jackets a mid-grey herringbone is fantastic, and rivals the dark brown for versatility. See my Harris Tweed above, from The Anthology

It’s also easier in winter cloths, but I find warmer, browner shades of grey can be good in the summer. See Biagio Granata jacket pictured. 

 

Dark-green tweed jacket, from Ciro Zizolfi
Summer wool/silk/linen green jacket, from Prologue
Drake’s jacket in an olive Escorial cloth with overcheck

4 Dark green

The other casual, rural staple after brown is green. Wonderful in a dark tweed, as above from Zizolfi. Goes with everything save other greens. 

It’s just as useful as the dark brown in summer too, often with a little check over the top, perhaps pale blue to pick up a shirt colour. Example above from Prologue

Green can also work as a smart jacket, just as navy can work in a casual one: it just needs more careful consideration. You want a colder shade, just like the brown – perhaps like the Drake’s windowpane check pictured. 

 

Eduardo de Simone jacket in mid-brown cashmere
An oatmeal-coloured jacket – in Escorial Tweed cloth
Pale-tan corduroy jacket from Orazio Luciano, at The Armoury

5 Tan and light brown

Those first four colours are the most obvious, the easiest to pick. Number five is a harder. (And of course there’s no reason you’d want five, rather than four or six – it’s just a ‘round’ number.)

Personally, I think the fifth area to look at is lighter browns and tans. For example, my mid-brown cashmere from Eduardo de Simone shown above, on the more casual side. Or my oatmeal Escorial Tweed for something smarter. 

There are also redder browns, like my Richard James. There are paler browns like my linen Caliendo – which is both summer-y and more casual. And there are tan corduroy jackets, like the Armoury one pictured.  

Most readers will find that one jacket in this colour range will make a useful fifth jacket. 

 

Gun-club check from Ciardi

 

A more casual collection

To be honest, I think the jackets above, in their most casual versions, would make a perfect capsule collection, even if you only wore them with jeans and chinos. 

But you could replace the navy with something more obviously casual if you wished, like a gun-club check (see Ciardi jacket above). 

A more formal collection

If you wanted a more formal selection – to wear really just for work, with smart trousers and shoes – then you might want to replace the brown or green with another navy (perhaps a different style, weight or pattern). 

Another option worth considering for a smart wardrobe is a dark grey, a charcoal. It needs some texture to it, perhaps like a donegal, but the darkness of the colour might make it better than a mid-grey.

A bigger collection

Once you had most of these basics, I would expand the wardrobe with colours and patterns, primarily. 

So a pink corduroy jacket is wonderful, for example, but you can’t wear it all the time. Equally a gun-club check: very enjoyable but also highly recognisable. Not to be worn every week. 

A bigger collection would also enable you to have a green corduroy as well as a green tweed. Or a grey cord as well as a grey tweed. 

 

Grey corduroy DB jacket, from Ciardi

Start simple in design, too

As to the designs of these jackets, I would start pretty simple. There’s no point selecting very classic, versatile materials, and then using unusual designs. 

So I would go for all single-breasted jackets – or one double-breasted at the most. 

It seems boring, but an SB will always be more useful – and if you have one style in a DB, there’s a chance you’ll want an SB version of it later. It’s what happened with my navy hopsack jacket from Caliendo, for instance. 

With these first five jackets, my design decisions would be driven just by how formal or casual I want them to be, such as patch pockets on more casual jackets, and flap pockets for smarter ones. 

Questions on all this happily received below. Including specific sets of five jackets for your very specific circumstances.

 

Single-breasted hopsack jacket from Ettore de Cesare
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Nicholas Kyriacou

Hi Simon, nice article. In the last photo are you wearing the navy hopsack with grey flannels? Isn’t that something to avoid? I.e. a “Summer” jacket with “Winter” trousers (and vice versa obviously).

John

Hi Simon,
As to this first question, obviously in the reader’s mind, hopsack as a fabric is merely thought of as being exclusively a Summer stuff. Actually, as you well know hopsack is made in various weights.
When it comes to cashmere, you might be surprised if I said that I’m not at all enamored with the fabric as such. But I nonetheless recommend it to female friends for their blazers.
Finally, gun club jacket can be really muted. I have a RTW one whose fabric was offered by Dormeuil decades ago. I still wear it – mostly at night for pubs! I just can’t give it away. Bruce Boyer would certainly understand such an attachment!
John

Robin

Brilliant summary !
I think you’ve got it perfect in terms of the colours .
And that Dark-brown Harris Tweed jacket from Elia Caliendo ….. I refer to it as the PS tweed from when I saw it first .

Anybody thinking of rushing out to buy the five will quickly realise they need five more for different seasons in slightly different shades.

Possibly a odd (maybe stupid question) ….why don’t we have jackets that open up at the arms to make sitting at desks and working on computers easier ?
(i.e. the kind worn for shooting which open to allow for shooting a shot gun )
What happens now is you take your jacket off to work at a computer or allow the arms to ride up your wrists.

Carl

Great article. Would you consider your brown escorial “urban tweed” as a good example of a dark brown jacket? Or is it to light?

Anonymous

Having the Escorial brown be a little darker would be more useful for what Simon? A more casual or formal wardrobe?

Anonymous

Would a darker brown steer it further from casual use (jeans, chinos)

Anonymous

Do you think you would make any of the future runs darker, specifically brown or green?

Chris K

Hi Simon, hope all’s well sir.

Right on time with this one I have to say. Despite working in tech, and working from home exclusively now since Covid reared it’s head, I have been slowly (very slowly) building.

I picked up my first bespoke odd trousers yesterday from the tailor (charcoal cav twill). And have my first few shirts from Luca arriving next month.

Now, following on from your very helpful ‘Navy Jacket and Jeans’ post from last month, I’m settled on navy for my first jacket (being my favourite colour also helps). To be precise, it’s Moon PL375 2013-33, Dark navy mix. Just wanted to check, do you think this would serve me well as a first jacket? (on the slightly more casual side). For reference, mid to dark indigo jeans, Charcoal trousers and olive/stone chinos are my defaults.

Thanks and much appreciated as always,
Ck

Ps. The Nubuck tote is a thing of beauty, had I the finances to spare I would have pounced on it.

Matt

Thanks for the article. Are there any jackets you would recommend for working from home that won’t feel “weird” in the way that wearing a business suit around your house would feel strange?

Rob

Superb article, thanks Simon. These capsule pieces are great, as they demonstrate that a great wardrobe is not a large wardrobe, but a well thought-out combination of pieces that pair together. They have certainly helped me to build my wardrobe, where every item is made to count. A capsule wardrobe also inherently lends itself to buying less, but buying quality, which i think appeals to most men. Thank you.

Can i ask if you think this cloth from Anglo-Italian would be a good candidate for a casual, versatile dark brown jacket? https://angloitalian.com/collections/tessuti/products/ait-016

I’m sure it’s hard to say without seeing the cloth, but my concern with going for a darker fabric (such as https://angloitalian.com/collections/tessuti/products/ait-018) is that it appears so dark that it becomes much more formal. Your Harris Tweed jacket from Caliendo above is beautiful as the fabric has so much character, which might be lost if it were too dark. It seems this a fine line to tread.

Thank you again, Simon.

Anonymous

Many thanks Simon, that’s helpful.

Just one additional question, regarding style. I am currently considering either Anglo-Italian (inspired by your review!) or Prologue to make a dark brown blazer for me. Noting the differences in the cut, my assessment is that both are reasonably casual in their style, though AI is perhaps even more casual. Even so, i still thought the Prologue style of wider shoulders, low buttoning point, curved and open quarters below the button lends itself to a casual style. Would you agree?

More generally, i assume that most Italian-style jackets are suitable for casual ware, compared to the more formal English ones?

Many thanks.

Max

Very helpful, thank you Simon.

Unfortunately I have found it hard to find decent cloth books for wool/linen/cashmere in London. I have ended up going for an Irish linen in a blue/grey as my summer jacket, not your recommendation on colour or cloth weight but will find out next summer!

Adam

I just took delivery of a navy herringbone tweed jacket and my hope is that I’ll be able to wear it both casually and more formally and have it as my only separate jacket. It will definitely work with flannels and more formal trousers with or without a tie but I’m still undecided as to how well it works with jeans – it is similar in style to the Solito jacket above but a shade lighter and slightly more structure to the shoulders with just a hint of roll to them.

I would just love to have a jacket made with that Harris tweed, but I probably wouldn’t get much use from a second jacket, and I look better in navy anyways. If anything I’d probably use a summer jacket in navy more than another tweed.

Raymond

Simon,
may I suggest another great color to add to your jacket collection: dark burgundy/wine. I have a wool one with faint gold and blue/green glen plaid and it looks great with grey wool trousers and brown suede brogues. Give it a try.

Carl

I think burgundy/wine works very well as part of a tweed mix, but not as a dominant color. But I also like the Drakes sport coat in tussah silk that is a brown with a touch of wine in it. https://www.drakes.com/clothing/blazers/brown-tussah-silk-jacket

Anonymous

Isn’t the navy herringbone 460 oz Anglo IT fabric you recommend for casual summers a bit too heavy Simon?

Do you have more recommendations navy cloths that are good for lightweight overshirts and shirt jackets for summer? Much appreciated

Anonymous

The website says the Anglo IT navy herringbone is larger in size — do you recommend a smaller herringbone for much shorter people based on the images?

Anonymous

Approximately 5’3?

Anonymous

What’s your recommendation for someone who lives in a relatively sunny, casual climate in Cali that averages usually 22 degrees (and varies b/w 21-29 degrees)? Should one just invest in summer jackets for year-round?

Noel

Great article Simon, I think it sort summarises the philosophy of odd jackets espoused throughout the site.

Just a quick question, will there be a review of the Hitchcock navy jacket ?

Anonymous

Simon would you not recommend costly bespoke shirts because the collar/neck area inevitably gets soiled? Collars can be replaced but what about areas also below the collar which can also get dirty?

Why does that particular area get soiled as opposed to other parts of the body?

Anonymous

I do have 3 MTM shirts now but don’t quite like the fit/look.

I’m a young person starting out my wardrobe and like Wil Whiting’s shirt fits, though they’re expensive… I’ll sturdy cloths with the hope they’ll last 10+ years? I’m thinking of getting around 5 shirts, ditching the old MTM ones… what do you think since I know you recommend cheaper shirts.

Chris

Hi simon – where is that white shirt from that you’re wearing with the blue Stephen Hitchcock jacket? Is it a one piece collar? It’s absolutely spectacular.

CJ

The tweed overcoat in the first image – where is it from?

Thanks!

Jun

Found this a very good read and probably something I would keep coming back to as a reference point, similar to the capsule wardrobe for business suits.

I don’t think I have seen the Steven Hitchcock navy cashmere jacket featured before, may I know if more pictures would be made available in future articles?

M.F

Hi Simon! I have a quedtion related to cloth!
I’m trying to purchase cloth from overseas, I’m particularly interested in a herringbone, tweed cloth from Moon, however, i notice that they only deliver to the UK
This is not the first time that i have encountered this problem
What can be done when there’s no retailers in a given country?
I just find another merchant with similar product?

DE

Hi MF, I would recommend you contact Moon and ask for a UK tailor who deals in their cloth. I’m sure you will be able to find a UK provincial tailor who will be happy to buy the length of tweed you require at their discounted rate and then sell it to you at full price. Shipping will be extra and possibly expensive (depending on how much cloth you need and where you live), but it may help you to get the cloth you want.

Kamikar German

Dear Mr. Crompton, a little bit off-topic but I was wondering whether you intend to do an introduction and/or a review about Sciamat, Milano (bespoke or MTM)? Thank you.
I am reading your articles for a while now, and I am delighted to say that I like what you write & the way you do it.
I appreciate your work very much and wish you all the best.

Jasper

I like articles like this. Thanks very much.
You made your recommendations very specific wich is great. Personally I think it often looks better on paper than in real life though.. . What I mean is for example my brown cotton jacket…I bought it because I thought it would be great to wear as a casual summer jacket for the same reasons you mentioned.. It turned out to be very hard to match with trousers. It came down do trying everything that I already had in my closet to see if there was a match. I only wear it with white trousers now. Looks great but not versitale at all. Thank again!

Johannes P

Great article, and really perfect for me since the most formal clothes I get to wear on a day-to-day basis is a sports jacket. As for the cloth of a navy jacket, where would you put a basket weave in the formality range, is it smarter or more casual than hopsack?

DE

Thanks Simon, lots of great ideas for new jackets here and some really nice styling too. Only you could feature photos of 18 different jackets (I think the Ciardi corduroy is repeated?) in an article titled ‘IF YOU ONLY HAD FIVE JACKETS’!

SK

Hi Simon,

This is a very useful post and very timely as I’m planning to order some sports coats soon!

I’ve been wanting to get something in linen for quite some time. Ideally in a colour that would primarily be worn as a summer sports coat (I am planning to order trousers as well so that I have the added advantage of wearing it as a suit, however the suit would only be worn occasionally). Of the sports coat colours that you’ve mentioned, what would you recommend in linen (even if the resulting suit is more bold / less useful / less versatile)?

As this jacket is likely to be a solid colour, would I be better served simply getting the same colour in a linen-wool-silk, given that the use of the suit is likely to be fairly limited? In other words, would you prefer a linen sports coat coat or a linen-wool-silk sports coat in the same solid colour?

Jan

Great article again, thanks Simon. For a more casual navy summer number, I would also add cotton in a relaxt, unstructured cut and make. Great with jeans and chinos and doable with grey fresco etc as well

Anonymous

Very insightful article, thanks, Simon! Quick question with regard to the grey herringbone tweed: Would you say such an odd jacket would work well with charcoal or perhaps black flannel trousers? Thanks for your advice!

Charles

Simon, I presume you may have heard already, but the SC Holdall is going to be used in the coming Bond movie. Congrats!

Scott

Simon, didn’t you design the SC Holdall? The Bond Experience just did an excellent review of this piece. FYI, the Holdall is featured in the recent Bond trailer.

Anonymous

Charles, what “Coming” Bond movie? The latest one was due to air in April, but was postponed to November because of Covid. The next film in the franchise hasn’t been commissioned yet. So how can you say the Hold-all is going to be used?

Please explain.

James

He (fairly obviously) means the one due to air in April and postponed to November…

Well done Simon. I know you’re rightly of the view, contrary to some menswear writers, that being featured in a Bond film does not make something stylish or cool in and of itself (it is after all effectively product placement much of the time). But it must nonetheless be very exciting to have the World’s Most Famous Spy having his dinner suit (no less) carried in the bag you designed. A piece of history that! More info here

https://www.jamesbondlifestyle.com/product/bennett-winch-sc-holdall

Jonny

Not the original poster, but I believe it can be see in ‘Trailer 2’ for No Time To Die. Bond is handed his Tuxedo in the SC Holdall.

M.F

Thanks Simon! One final question: Do you think a navy flannel is a good option for a unstructured casual jacket (soft shoulder, no lining, minimum canvassing)? Does it need to be in a particular weight to work? Or do you think another type of woollen would be more up to the task?

Per S

This touches a long-lasting puzzle of mine: Flannel used to be the go-to material of casual (tailored) trousers. Yet it is allegedly too formal for odd jackets. Why are trousers and jackets different in this respect?

Per S

Great explanation. Thank you.

Alexander

Absolutely wonderful article, as always. Enjoy this style of doing the capsule collection – it’s informative, not overwhelming, and allows a bit more room for imagination given the use of 3 pictures per item as a reference.

Got a nice laugh out of the last sentence.

I only wish you put this out a little earlier in the year as I was starting to buy some casual pieces (though it seems like I ended up in a similar place – perhaps because I’ve read enough of your other work). I will say that it is difficult to find good RTW options (well, at least when one is trying to be careful about one’s funds) for the following very specific use case:

business casual outfits during hot humid summers in Northern California. I’ve resorted to linen blends, hopsack, linen DB (all 3 in shades of navy/blue) because good greys are hard to find for summer RTW. I’ll say this, I feel more comfortable with my selections as a starting point after this article, and will use it as a reference.

Chip

Very useful guide, Simon.

What’s your view on the most versatile DB colour ? Navy would be obvious to me but keen to get your thoughts anyway.

JH

For maximum versatility (which is a key objective for a capsule collection), do you have any advice on fabric choices for jackets that work across seasons? Say, for all but the height of summer (and assuming a bit of appropriate layering with knitwear and/or outerwear to see you through winter) here in the UK. This week’s UK weather is a good example: it was warm and sunny at the beginning of the week and will be cool and wet by the end.

I noticed that Anglo-Italian have a “Transitional” category where, from what I can tell, the cloths are similar weights to their AW equivalents but add in a bit of cotton to the mix. Does that make it a little cooler? I’d be interested in any other principles to achieve this versatility across seasons.

Ollie

This is fantastic, Simon. On the topic of ‘number of jackets’, it got me thinking about the number of jackets you have from trying out different tailors. I’m sure you try to keep at a consistent weight, but what do you do when/if you need to get them altered? It must be inconvenient 1. due to the number of different tailors & 2. if they don’t travel to the UK (Liverano etc.).

Ollie

Thanks Simon, that would be great to see!

Jon Bromfield

I had thought there were structural and other tailoring details that made suit coats not quite right for using as sport coats, but Brian Lishak of Richard Anderson Ltd. informs me the differences between their sports coats and suit coats are minor:

“A tad longer is all and a four button cuff rather than two or three. Our style is based on the classic riding coat (from which the sports coat derived) except for our using a single button front.”

Have you discerned any significant differences between the two?

Anonymous

You have to take in consideration the region you live in and the change in seasons. Certain fabrics are more comfortable than others. I would like more information on proper fabrics because to me this makes the whole garment. The fabric, cut, design, and craftsmanship.

Rik

Simon – Would you tend to always have your jackets buttoned up when standing? I’m just wondering about prioritising the fit across shoulders, chest, waist etc with RTW

Anonymous

In London, in which months do you wear a navy wool/cashmere jacket and when a navy hopsack jacket? I ask because I need a jacket for spring, summer and autumn. I am usually in air-conditioned offices and I would like to have a navy jacket that I can wear not only in summer but for as long as possible throughout the rest of the year.

Would a fully lined navy hopsack jacket (9oz) be a solution?

Could you recommend something (fabric/weave type and weight)?

Linden

A very useful edition. The capsule series is super useful.

As I was reading this one on jackets I recalled that I don’t think I’ve seen an article from you on the “shacket”. In the continuing casualisation trend I expect we will be seeing more of this article. I searched your site, and found one article talking about wearing a t-shirt, in which you wore a light fabric blouson, but that is cut differently – shorter for a start – than a shacket.

It strikes me that in a really informal setting, where no one is wearing a jacket, and you want to be a bit smarter, but not quite the odd one out, a shacket can work well. In one way they remind me a bit of the trend in my youth in the late ’80s, into the ’90s of wearing an unbuttoned shirt over a t-shirt. But the shacket, being cut to work more like a jacket, looks so much smarter than that.

I appreciate that as the UK heads into autumn this topic may have missed the seasonal boat for relevance, but I would be very interested if you chose to write on this subject at some future point.

I look at my own small collection of jackets-proper (I live in a tropical climate), and most of them are halfway there already – linen/mix, soft tailoring, unlined. That, here, is already pretty formal. I see more shackets on the horizon.

VincentL

Hi Simon,
I want to buy a brown jacket but I don’t know if the grammage is important with flannel, some people said that you need at least 320 gr.

Tailors know I’m a beginner, so it’s really hard to find the best cloth with my budget, which is not really high for a jacket (850€).

VincentL

I have a lot of blue/beige trousers, so I thought it would be nice to buy a brown jacket.

Like this one from Pini Parma : https://www.piniparma.com/collections/suits/products/brown-wool-jacket-made-in-italy

Anonymous

if your dress shirts keep getting dirty due to sweat especially around the neckline/collar, would wearing a t-shirt underneath help? I’m a bit skeptical that it would unless you have a t shirt with a high collar

Anonymous

Is that a one piece collar with your S. Hitchcock jacket?

Assuming yes, is it possible for a bespoke shirtmaker to make a one piece collar, but not so pronounced like that?

Stanley

Hi Simon

i like the weight and texture from drapers 4ply, but seem most of the cloth from this collection are dedicated for suit

Regarding on jacket pattern, do you think the blue windowpane from this 4ply collection (https://drapersitaly.it/au-en/collection/4238/) will be a right colour and pattern for an odd jacket?

Thank You

Max

Simon,
Starter question for 10. If someone has a brown Donegal tweed and a greyish blue linen jacket what should the third jacket be? I’m leaning towards a grey glen check but I don’t think that two out of three jackets should be on the grey side of things given your post above.

Keep well

Henry

Good Evening Simon,
Not sure if you have already managed the buttoning types, in case, I do apologise…

I am planning my next navy blazer which I would mostly wear with jeans or tailored odd trousers, so informal…spalla camicia, patch pockets, maybe peak lapel(but not defined yet as peak lapel is too bold sometimes) …but I am thinking on the buttoning type…

I am thinking if a single button could be the right choice…3 on 2 is the standard on Neapolitan jackets but at the end only one button is used (if used)….single (dark horn) button might help to keep the line cleaner (and also it would not be “the average Neapolitan blazer”)

What’s your position on single button blazers?

Thanks and best wishes for the festivities.

Regards

Henry

Thanks Simon,
the link is an interesting read, glad you shared it.

Yeah, you are right a 3-roll-2 is more versatile and overall will better fit the business environment I work, which is informal (several VPs and some C-class but definitely not a tie and suit workplace).

I hope that the spalla a camicia (not too extreme, I want something “subtle”) will help in smoothing the “dramaticity” of the peak lapels…also considering I would almost never wear the blazer buttoned (reason why I’ll make half lining as I like the jacket seems cleaner inside when it’s open…)

Thanks as always for the great support.
Cheers

Henry

Thanks.
I agree. I would use high end tailors for suits only.
To me an informal jacket can be (slightly) less perfect than a suit (usually used to be buttoned).
Cheers

Henry

Great, thanks !
Would then be a smarter option to spend on a good MTO blazer like JMM (~1500gbp) and go full bespoke on a complete suit?
I might drift to this option…

Anonymous

Hi Simon,
Do you see any major difference in versatility between a 2 button SB vs a 3-roll-2 dark brown neapolitan style jacket, especially for a first jacket in this color?
Thanks.

Anonymous

If the lapel shape and roll allows, would it be feasible for a tailor to add a button and buttonhole and convert a 2 button jacket into a 3-roll-2 with reasonable results?

Evatt

Hello Simon,

I have a question and I couldn’t think of where better to pose it than here. I was reading Ethan Wong’s blog and he talks about ” button harmony”, essentially the bottom button of a jacket being in line with the top of the waist pockets. Most well-dressed men seem to have jackets that conform to this and it does seem to look balanced and, well, harmonious. However, a quick look on eBay or similar will show that the vast majority of 2nd hand jackets, certainly in my size, do not have “button harmony”. Is it really as important as Ethan Wong suggests it is? If so, why do so many older jackets in existence not have it?

Dash Riprock.

I’ve only got one .A marlboro classics. 18 years in old .Cost me £25.

Anonymous

If you only wear a jacket in spring, summer and possibly early autumn, are summer fabrics sufficient? A hopsack or wool-silk-linen jacket is comfortable on hot days and can be layered with knitwear for colder days.

Anonymous

When do you switch from winter to summer jackets and vice versa (temperatures/month)?

Anonymous

If one commissions a bespoke jacket, would choosing a two button jacket necessarily have a longer lapel than say a three-roll-two? In other words, does one sacrifice lapel length when choosing 3-roll-2?

Andras

Hello Simon, do you think Dugdale Bros Cascade dark navy silk-linen fabric would be appropriate as a summer casual, 9oz isn’t to light ? Also if you have any experience with mixing only silk- linen without wool, if there is any big difference. Thanks

Andras

Thanks Simon, can you please advise, which one will be better for summer, this one, or that heavy linen you wrote about in article?

VincentL

Hi Simon,
I went to Lafayette Saltiel Drapiers (3 times), Virgil and Pierre helped me a lot to find the right tailor and the right fabric for the Navy jacket.

Now I hesitate a lot for the color of my 3rd jacket ( 1/brown 2/navy). Maybe Gun-club check but you write “very enjoyable but also highly recognisable. Not to be worn every week”.
Is this fabric versatile ? More than your Ciardi Jacket ? https://ibb.co/Bwfp5zk
The darker the better for the versatility, even with gun-club check ?

VincentL

Yeah, i’m not a huge fan of grey jacket, but it can be nice by wearing colorful clothes like Mark Cho for example. (https://www.instagram.com/p/B5Fi3lMhrDl/)

I thought it was for older people, but with a yellow or burgundy cardigan I think it can be really versatile.

Thanks.

Ben R

Do you find pockets have a great effect on the smartness of an odd jacket? I am looking for more smart odd jackets, so I am leaning towards flapped pockets – probably hacking pockets. And I was thinking a ticket pocket to distinguish it from my typical suits. These would be more structured English tailored jackets.

Usually I do patch pockets on my odd jackets, but they tend to be in more casual cloths, patterns, and colors. And they tend to be Florentine and Neapolitan jackets. (Although I do have some patch and bellowed pockets on some more hunting-inspired English jackets.)

And do you think a natural colored camelhair jackets could fit in the light brown/tan category?

Ben R

Do you have any recommendations on jacket cloth weights for three season wear – autumn, winter (working in modern office with heating and cooling and use of an overcoat), and spring? I know climate will make a difference, but say similar to the UK. Are there other factors besides weight I should keep in mind, i.e. fibre mix, weave, etc?

Ben R

Thanks. I was thinking 9-11oz, so I’ll be looking to lean towards the lower end of that range then. But I might have to be a little more season specific with my jackets after all.

Checked, casual, summer jackets are easy. It seems harder to find something smarter and three-seasons with out repurposing suiting. The exception being navy jacketing. Any recommendation on bunches would be appreciated.

As an aside, do you think it is possible to have one “transitional” wardrobe covering autumn and spring? Or are the color palettes too different? My guy says the palettes are different – considering the relative light, or strength of sun, during those seasons.

Ben R

Thanks for the tips. And “my guy” was meant to be my GUT. Hah. So no worries about anyone pushing sales…. Other than my own love of shopping and clothes.

Anonymous

Revisiting this article and it really is one of your best. Navy and brown are obvious ones but cream and dark green are under appreciated. Grey works but it just can’t be too dark and benefits from a pattern or texture that makes it clear it’s not a suit jacket.

This should go into a “Best of Permanent Style” master list.

MBB355

Simon, can I ask what you think about this jacket:

https://nomanwalksalone.com/clothing/sport-coats/sport-coat-in-maroon-lightweight-wool-with-blue-check-8-oz.html

I like it but I worry that maybe the unusual maroon color coupled with the blue check/windowpane might be a bit much. Thanks for any guidance here.

MBB355

Thank you!

Sam

Hi Simon, I would like to get a couple of ‘proper’ jackets – probably a navy sc and perhaps a dark brown/ green tweed sc also. I could afford to go to go to Anglo Italian or Saman, however it would be a stretch and I really want to understand if getting a good jacket from trunk perhaps a bogliioli would be meaningfully different to paying 2x for Anglo etc? I have bought bespoke in the past, but conscious when you surround yourself with content involving people spending thousands on clothes you can normalise it and I want to be objective. Do I need to spend £1500 on a navy jacket I guess is the question… (realise not on you to answer this for me but as ever keen to know your thoughts!). Sam

Chris K

Hi Simon, hope you’re well.

If I could kindly get your thoughts on something. I asked previously you’re thoughts regards my choice of cloth for my first bespoke jacket (Moons, dark navy mix herringbone, planning an appointment with Mr Solito in the near future hopefully), appreciate the help with that.

However, naturally, I’ve already got jacket number two on my mind. I have a thing for herringbone, it’s a subtle pattern that from a distance really just looks like texture (to me, at least) and would happily go for the same collection again but specifically in a brown/black mix (PL375 2013-16). I just wanted to get your thoughts on this as a choice for a jacket collection in it’s early stages.

Brown is great, but the darker, colder side of brown is more my thing, hence when it’s mixed with black, grey, or a navy check etc. , I love it. I just wonder, would a jacket made in this fabric work well in a more casual context (bare in mind, it will be in a Neapolitan make, patch pockets etc. anyway). Mid to dark jeans, mid grey flannels etc. I just feel it would work well with mid grey trousers, and denim/chambray shirts (my favourite) for example. Brown, but a colder, perhaps more urban version.

Would love to know your thoughts,

Thanks and much appreciated as ever,
Chris

Ps. Loved today’s article on dressing yourself and how it’s evolved over the years. Really spoke to me.

Tommy

Hi,
if I had the choice to take five jackets on a lonely island, it would be the following fabrics:
– a dark blue flannel jacket (winter)
– a Green tweed jacket (winter)
– a dark blue linen jacket (summer)
– a seersucker jacket (summer)
– a Prince of Wales Hopsack jacket (summer)
Concerning the last bullet point I have a question: in general I would prefer a grey Prince of Wales jacket. But what do you think of a green checked jacket as an alternative? The colour green is warmer and it is easier to combine then a grey jacket. But I am not sure, please see the following link, do you like the blue pattern in the green jacket? If yes, which trouser colour you would combine?
https://www.kuhn-masskonfektion.com/Sakko-mit-Retro-Karo-aus-JEBRIC/03-200165-3009-SAKKO-HERREN
It is a fabric from Lanificio T.G. di Fabio (in a wool, linen, Elasthan mix)

Tommy

Thank you Simon, that was very helpful for me!

Tommy

Ok. May I ask you again what you think about the following fabrics? The supplier is well known for its quality in Italy. Here are two other checked designs, this time not in green 😉
https://drapersitaly.it/bs-en/collection/4835/

https://drapersitaly.it/bs-en/collection/50111/

Tommy

Ok thanks. Do you know a good choice for a (Hopsack) Glencheck / Prince of Wales fabric? The pattern should be larger then smaller because a fine pattern would be more for a suit I guess. The fabric should have structure. A checked pattern is perfect for a sport coat but in my opinion a nice fabric is hard to find ;(

Tommy

Ok no worries. In you article I read that a mix of wool/silk/linen is also very good for summer, especially when it is a Hopsack weave. What you think about a light blue sport jacket in this style? I mean it could be even better than a Glencheck jacket because it is easier to combine. Can you please tell me as a last supporting act how you think about the following fabric:
https://shop.hfwltd.com/collection/74 – Product 320792
Thank you again so much!

Mike

Hi Simon,

I’m in need of a good sports coat, preferably in brown, and I saw a berg and berg option:

https://bergbergstore.com/products/dan-high-twist-wool-blazer-taupe

Do you think this could be worn as a blazer with different colored trousers (navy, grey), or do you think this jacket is too formal and therefore only works as a suit option?

I would appreciate you input.

Thomas

I have a green donegal tweed from Maggy1866. My combination are corduroy trousers from Loro Piana in Burgund and in Brown. Does it work?

Divesh

Hi Simon. Do you think leather elbow patches on a wool blazer are still in, in 2021?

Marcus Shaffer

Hi Simon, great articles. I am looking at having a Navy bespoke sport coat made – I am thinking Cifonelli or deLuca in Paris. Ideally, this jacket should pair with dark denim jeans and be a cashmere or cashmere / wool blend. Do you have any general suggestions?