Style Notes: What to look for when buying men’s designer jackets online
Your guide to finding and styling the perfect men’s jacket
As Charles Bokowski once said, “style is the answer to everything”, and we couldn’t agree more. Your jacket encapsulates your personal style and is one of the first things people notice about you.
Our guide to finding your perfect men’s jacket online and how to style it will make sure you make the perfect fashionable first impression.
What are the key styles of men’s jackets to look for in 2012?
Blazer Always of the moment, a beautifully cut blazer is an essential for nailing that minefield of the ‘smart-casual’ dresscode. Once you’ve found the perfect blazer, building an outfit around it is easy with a crisp white shirt, jeans or chinos and loafers.
Bomber Men’s bomber jackets were originally created as a protective item of clothing for pilots in unenclosed cockpits in the First World War. They have since been adopted into contemporary mainstream fashion. The bomber is a sturdy and durable men’s jacket and great for the colder months.
Sports Sports jackets for men are often confused with blazers thanks to their similarities. A sports jacket is often considered less formal than its counterpart and it is textured and usually patterned (as opposed to a blazer which is one solid colour). This is a great option for casual attire.
Leather Traditionally associated with bikers, men’s leather jackets have become classics thanks to leather-clad icons like John Travolta and Sid Vicious, who asked to be buried in his. Very durable and versatile, these are great for adding a focal point or a bit of edge to an outfit. Look for good quality leather for a real investment buy.
Quilted Made popular by classic British design house Barbour, the quilted jacket has been revived in recent years. The perfect men’s jacket for keeping warm and making a statement.
Fleece Great for outdoor pursuits, men’s fleece jackets keep you warm like a thick, wool coat but are much lighter in weight thanks to the strong but light fabric. A great alternative to wool if you’re on a budget and looking for warm but cheap men’s jackets
Varsity Men’s varsity jackets are a great, contemporary look. Traditionally worn by American college sports teams, the jacket, normally made of wool and featuring banded wrists, has now become iconic.
Military Men’s military style jackets usually feature epaulettes, button details and collar. They usually come in khaki or dark colours and are a nod to traditional men’s military jackets.
Padded/puffa The ideal men’s outdoor jacket for keeping those wintery winds at bay. You needn’t forego style for the sake of practicality, either; with such an array of styles the padded jacket and men’s puffa jackets can be surprisingly easy to wear. An excellent choice for outdoor pursuits or for those of you lucky ones indulging in a little après-ski.
Harrington Created by UK heritage brand Baracuta in the 1930s, the Ivy League Harrington jacket was popularised by Elvis Presley in the US and mods and skinheads in the UK. The Harrington remains a classic, on-trend men’s jacket to this day. It is lightweight, multitasking and often features tartan lining as a nod to its predecessors.
What style of men’s jackets will suit my shape?
Wearing an ill-fitting jacket can completely ruin your look, so dressing for your shape is key. Wanting to hide those extra few pounds or make the most of your height? Read on…
Men’s jackets if you are short Never wear a jacket that’s too big as this will swamp your frame and make you look even shorter. Avoid contrasting colours too – sticking with one colour will elongate your body, particularly if they’re dark colours like black or grey. Oh, and remember the golden rule: no slouching!
Men’s jackets if you are tall Men who are blessed with height are often inclined to reach straight for bigger sizes, which can make them look overly lean and instantly makes an outfit look sloppy no matter how put-together it may be. Light colours and a belt will break up your frame and make the most of your stature.
Men’s jackets if you are heavy set Use your new men’s designer jacket to flatter your shape with details such as V-necks or horizontal stripes which instantly give the illusion of height rather than width. Tuck your shirt into your trousers as any excess fabric will simply appear bulky on your frame. Also bear in mind that darker colours have a slimming effect.
Comparing sizes of men's jackets
Now you know what style of jacket to buy to suit your shape, take a look at our size comparisons below for a general guide to clothing sizes. Be sure to check the latest independent size guides on retailers’ sites before you buy your new men’s jacket.
Styling your jacket
So you’ve scoured Cafe La Moda’s shopping pages, found your perfect new men’s jacket and you’re now just waiting for the postman to knock. In the meantime, have a look over our top tips for styling your new purchase:
Men’s leather jackets Wear fitted close to the body – this ensures your new jacket keeps you warm and it creates a much more flattering silhouette. Make sure the shoulder seams end at your shoulders and the bottom of the jacket hits your waistline. And remember that a classic front-zip, black men’s leather jacket will never date.
Men’s denim jacket Double denim is a big no-no unless you’re channeling Justin Timberlake circa 2001 so avoid coupling your denim jacket with jeans or, even worse, a denim shirt. If you think you can rock the double denim look better than JT did, always go for a dark denim on the bottom and a light denim on top and break it up with a light coloured, cotton t-shirt. If you’re worried about your new denim jacket fading, invest in some special detergent to lock the colour in and only wash when totally necessary.
Men’s blazers Men’s blazers are a fail-safe option and can be teamed with several styles of trousers and shirt depending on the look you’re opting for. A blazer is perfect for layering: fitted t-shirts, v-necks, shirts (both formal or casual) and cashmere or wool jumpers all look great worn with a blazer. Patterns or solid colours can both look fantastic worn underneath a blazer, just be wary of mixing prints or several colours. Jeans and chinos are the best option for your lower half.
Men’s Harrington jacket Your Harrington jacket waistband should sit on your belt (you are wearing a belt, aren’t you?). If it’s sitting above it’s too small, below and it’s too big. Sleeves should end at your wrist – there’s nothing worse than sleeves that are too short. If you’re looking for a classic style stick to timeless neutrals, black, blue and grey. A brightly-coloured Harrington is a great way for the trend-conscious to inject some pizzazz into their wardrobe, just steer clear of loud patterns or garish colours – way too nineties!
I need some more inspiration!
Your wish is our command – have a look at our comparison tables below and our shopping pages for a look at the designers and cheap high-street alternatives to suit your budget.