7 August 2014

My new boating jacket, made by Cad & The Dandy

A while ago, Huddersfield Cloth had a discount offer on a fabric I thought could make a very nice jacket. It was an offer I couldn't resist and I bought three metres for the bargain price of £20 a metre. If you find a good quality fabric you actually like, for such a bargain price, there's only one thing to do, get you wallet out and buy a few metres. If you see the cloth as a coming suit, I would recommend getting about five metres, that will be sufficient for a three piece with an extra pair of trousers. For just a jacket, 2.5 metres should be enough. Don't worry if you don't have the money to pay for a tailor to turn the fabric into something useful, the cloth won't go off and hopefully you won't go off the cloth, so just keep it in the closet until you have found the right tailor and you think you can afford to pay for it.

The fabric I found this time was a broad striped, 300gr, Worsted wool cloth which I instantly thought would make a great jacket. I do have a weakness for bold patterned fabrics. Such fabrics may not be ideal for blending in, unless you're at the Henley regatta or at Glorious Goodwood, but bold patterned jackets are a great way of expressing yourself and have some fun while at the same time looking immensely stylish. I have a couple of jackets of this kind and they have provided me with more compliments than most suits I own. Most of the people complimenting/commenting on these jackets are men, however, but a compliment is definitely something to appreciate from whoever it may come.   

After having kept the fabric in the closet for a good few months, I finally decided I had the required funds and took the cloth to Cad & the Dandy. After about six weeks the jacket was finished and it looks even better than I thought it would do. Designwise I didn't do things much differently than I've done before. It's a two buttoned, single breasted jacket, with side vents, pockets with flaps and a ticket pocket. What I did this time, that I haven't done before, is that I decided to go for peaked lapels. I've been wanting a jacket with peaked lapels for a while and I thought this would be the perfect jacket for it. With regard to the lining, I didn't go over board this time. The lining of a jacket can often be one of the things that makes it special, what sets it apart from the crowd. With a jacket like this, however, I think the fabric makes enough of a statement itself and I opted for a more descreet navy lining which coresponded with the navy stripes in the cloth.

So, how would you wear a jacket like this? Boating jackets are both formal and casual in that it basically is a suit jacket (formal) made from an extravagant fabric (casual). I think this duality should be reflected in what you wear with the jacket. I like the trousers to represent the casual, chinos work very well or some light cotton trousers, preferably in a contrasting colour. The shoes, on the other hand, should be more formal. I think proper leather shoes, oxfords or derbys, work best with such an outfit. One should definitely stay away the far too casual canvas shoes or, do I have to say it, sneakers. With regards to the shirt, stick with a plain coloured one, white is generally my prefered choice. The jacket speaks loudly enough, so the shirt might as well stay in the background. What about neckwear and pocket squares? Is it necessary? I do believe you could get away with dropping the tie, but I also think it would look better with it. I also think cravats work well with boating jackets, or why not a stylish bow tie? At last, don't forget to perfect the look by putting on the ultimate summer accessory, a Panama hat.

Below are several photos of the jacket in combination with a tie and shirt from Charles Tyrwhitt, chinos from Savile Row Company, and shoes from Barker.
Photo: AGL
Photo: AGL
Photo: AGL
Photo: AGL 
Photo: AGL

1 comment:

  1. There's just something about stripes... men don't wear them nearly enough, I think.

    Janessa, imprints-tshirt

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