Shetland & a Long Sleeve T-Shirt

The world keeps getting more casual while us trad’s try to remain the same. I’ve always struggled with casual outfits. When I say casual I don’t mean business casual. I am talking about Saturday type casual. I’ve had some success with switching out my chinos for green fatigue styled pants, wearing flannel shirts, and by leaving my shirts untucked. Lately I decided to branch out even further.

The trad’s instinct is to always wear an OCBD under a sweater. This is a great instinct because the shirt keeps wool off your skin and the OCBD collar gently protruding from under the sweater just looks fantastic. The problem is that this is my go to office look so it doesn’t look all that casual when I do it. Even if I swap my penny loafers for blucher mocs it doesn’t quite get there. Sneakers help, but this has been my casual Friday look. My current solution has been wearing a long sleeve t-shirt under my sweaters.

As I was writing this post I realized that this is a look that I have done done in the past. However back then I typically used a turtleneck. This is a nice way to dress this look up a touch and it still looks more casual than wearing an OCBD underneath. I am currently a big fan of the long sleeve-t though. It’s even more casual looking especially when paired with jeans, fatigues, or even our beloved chinos.

I can’t leave without mentioning how this look really helps with one specific type of sweater. The tennis sweaters or cricket sweater (depending on which side of the pond you live on) can have some 80’s movie spoiled/evil rich kid baggage. The t-shirt underneath seems to help kill a lot of that vibe. I hope this helps any of you that are struggling with those weekend casual looks. Before you ask, I just wear Hanes or Fruit of Loom long sleeve t’s!

People Watching: Charlie Don’t Surf

This week I am back with another installment of people watching. Although he longer posts this UK based all-around cool guy who goes by Charlie don’t surf on IG (see here) continues to give me inspiration. Specifically he gives me fall/winter inspo with his casual-leaning-heavy-duty-rugged-ivy style mixing trad, ivy, and old school/new school gorp with fantastic results. It reminds me of an updated version of the 70s trad looks that HTJ used to post and it is really good.

Here’s how he does it. He goes for a boxier straight but not super baggy silhouette. The pants are almost always denim, but there is the occasional corduroy 5-pockets in brown. The shirts are OCBDs in blue or white. His shetlands are typically earth tones. The outerwear is rugged 70s gorp (down jackets, down vests, 60/40 jackets, etc.) and always offer a nice contrast with his sweater. The shoes are casual, often chunky and suede (Padmore 204s, camp mocs, Paraboots, desert boots, grey New Balance). His accessories are a cap (bucket or baseball) and a ribbon belt in green/red. David’s style is a study in silhouette, color, and texture. Couple that with his knowledge of self and you have some very very good fits.

A few takeaways. David’s reinforces my belief that a simple uniform style approach to getting dressed is the way to go. He keeps it simple, does variations on what works for him/what he likes, and it pays off. I have never really been into low top wallabee style shoes or ribbon belts, but now I am considering both. If you like his old school outdoor outerwear look for older REI, L.L. Bean, and brown label North Face on Ebay. You know I love my old green down vest. David is more proof that you can look cool wearing trad/ivy and that it doesn’t have to be all heyday, repp ties, and navy blazers even though that’s cool too.

After checking out this post you might also enjoy, The Late 70s Prep Checklist that I did back in 2015. It can provide some more inspiration for this style. I’ve included more pics of David below. Be warned, when imitating these looks that he is a very cool guy and your results may vary. Have a great weekend!

Let’s Take it Back to the Old School

This week I thought I’d throw it back to old school days of trad online. I am talking about the peak of the online menswear community. I am taking it back to the forums (shoutout to Ask Andy Trad!), the blogs (big ups to HeavyTweedJacket!), all the tumblrs, and the early days of IG with this post. With that being said here is some good ole’ collar, cuff, and unadulterated sweater porn. Enjoy!

Light Green Shetland
Shetland Sweater in Salmon

Sports Coat Capsule

J.Press Summer Tweed

I like to think that I have a relatively minimalistic approach to clothing at least for someone that is in to clothing. For example, it’s a blue OCBD and khaki chinos almost every day. I like my uniform approach. It’s easy, comforting, I like the way it looks, and I like the effect that it has on others. I want to do the same with sport coats that I do with my shirts and pants. So I came up with my ideal sport coat capsule.

You can see my capsule below. I think with these jackets I will have a just enough variety that I won’t look exactly the same every day, but at the same time getting dressed won’t be overwhelming. My list is a little cold weather heavy, but that’s when I wear sport coats the most. I do have a lighter tweed for warmer weather. I am also happy to simply wear a blue blazer in the warmer months. I have even considered keeping my capsule to only navy blazers. That might be too minimalistic even for me.

Where am I at now? I currently have six sport coats in the rotation. I have made a notation for what category they fall into and added a picture below. I have a year round and summer blazer. I can check them off the list. Although the summer blazer is fading fast. My grey herringbone and brown herringbone that I currently have are place holders. My grey herringbone has stripes of olive and navy which I’d like to replace with solid grey. It along with my brown herringbone sport coat also both have lower welted pockets. The goal moving forward is to get everything in my preferred style which is a 3/2 sack cut with swelled edges, center vent, welted chest pocket, and lower patch with flap pockets.

After putting together my list I am not as far off as I had originally thought. All I need to do is stay focused. My biggest hurdle has always been my size. I am basically between a 36R and a 38S. This unfortunately this puts me into beggars can’t be choosers territory. If I see something in my size on the second hand market I used to jump at it. This approach has also led me to have jackets that I don’t necessarily care for in the past. Luckily this time around I am in no hurry at all. This isn’t a this year or even next year acquisition list, but a long term plan. Below is my list. Let me know what you think.

Sport Coat Capsule

  • Grey Herringbone – 1
  • Brown Herringbone – 1
  • Olive Herringbone – 0
  • Gun Club/ Houndstooth/ Check / Etc. – 2
  • Camel Hair – 0
  • Tan Corduroy – 0
  • Olive Corduroy – 0
  • Year Round Blazer- 1
  • Summer Blazer – 1
  • Winter Blazer – 0

Basket weave Tweed Sport Coat

Wash n Wear Blazer

The J.Press Catalog & A Corduroy Sport Coat

3/2 Tan Corduroy Sport Coat J.Press Pennant

The new J.Press catalog showed up in my mailbox last week. There’s always some good stuff in there to drool over like the new soft make Lovat sport coats, the all cotton wide wale corduroy pants that which are becoming increasingly hard to find, and the re-emergence of moleskin pants There is a whole lot more, but this post is about one image that really stood out to me.

Check out the picture above. It is so good. The tan corduroy sport coat. The checked shirt. The silk knit tie. Even the notebook adds something. It’s a classic look with Dustin Hoffman Graduate vibes, but it also looks contemporary. The corduroy sport coat straddles the line between dressed up and dressed down nicely reflecting our current sartorial climate. It might be the perfect fence sitter. Same with the knit tie. The natural pose helps make him look comfortable in these clothes. This is what makes for good looks books and for good fits in real life. One thing that surprises me about this fit is that I would have never picked a shirt with a pattern in these colors, but it sure does work here. Yes, I know there is no collar roll. The youngsters will get there. This is Pennant Label J.Press not mainline which still has that good collar roll. I am not sold on the 5-pocket cords with the different color corduroy jacket, but since they are obscured in the pic I I am going to let it ride. Hats off to whomever styled this one.

Dustin Hoffman & His Killer Cord Jacket in The Graduate

This seems like as good of a time as any to use my bully pulpit for personal gain. I have been and still am on the lookout for a similar jacket. My size is sold out at J.Press or I’d bite. It’s probably the reason why I liked the pic so much. My ideal set up is a 3/2 roll sack cut with swelled edges, a welted chest pocket, patch and flap lower pockets, and center vent in this color. This gold tan color is the best cord color imho with olive trailing just behind. It works with chinos and it works with jeans. I’d love a good deal on a vintage 3/2 roll corduroy sport coat, but if you know where a new one is send it my way as well. Here’s the rub. I am about a 37s (17-17.25″ shoulders, 20-ish” ptp, and 28-29 length from boc). Thanks for keeping me in mind!