Versatile Suiting - With Hockerty Men
When purchasing a suit versatility and re-usability should be on the forefront of your thought process. This is especially true when you’re just beginning to build your wardrobe and don’t have an assortment of basic suits to build off from. For me, when I think about the overall versatility of a suit my mind immediately goes to seasonal use and whether or not I would be able to continue to wear the suit after the season is over and the temperature begins to change. If you’re looking at lighter/breathable fabrics like linen or cotton then better keep in mind that once it starts to cool down the suit will be a bit too open for that cooler air. Vise-versa, if you went with a heavier fabric like tweed or flannel then expect to put the suit up once it starts getting hotter again otherwise the heavy fabric will bake you like an oven.
So when considering fabric and what would be optimal for a “all-season” suit, I would advise to lean a bit more towards wool rather any other fabric. Granted tweed and flannel are both variations of wool and would not be considered optimal for all types of weather; here I am referring to classic, tried and true worsted wool (arguably the most popular fabric for men’s suiting in the world). Which just so happens to be the fabric I decided to go with when designing this suit I’m wearing here. The suit is in collaboration with Hockerty, an online based custom suiting service which I have worked with a few times already in the past for some dress shirts. However this was my first time taking one of their suits for a spin. The plan was to use the suit in a multi-seasonal post, showing how I styled the suit differently as the weather shifted from winter to summer and some thoughts on how you could do the same.
#1 - Winter
For those colder months, I wanted to show the suit more formally layered. Especially given that it’s a double-breasted suit, which I have always found to be bolder and makes more of a statement than a single-breasted suit would. Perhaps this is merely due to the infrequency you see gentlemen incorporating the style into their wardrobe, let alone pulling it off correctly. Or perhaps it is because we are still making our way out of the “slim-cut” era, where small/slim lapels and skinny suits dominated the scene for a time. If done right however I find the double-breasted jacket always results in a more lasting impression. Paired with chocolate brown monk straps, sand colored socks with a matching scarf, a blue denim shirt, and cream overcoat to finish it off. The end result is a look that would not be out of place on the streets of New York, or even the cobblestone roads of Italy. But definitely succeeds in shielding you from the cold elements (for snow, swap monks out for boots to keep from damaging your dress shoes).
#2 - Spring
The next set of images comes from my trip to New York City back in February, where I styled the suit slightly more layered down while still being geared more towards that cooler late winter/early spring weather. This time the only pieces besides the suit itself are the pair of white sneakers contrasting perfectly against the brown trousers (Cream overcoat before, now white sneakers. Noticing a trend?) , the navy blue turtleneck, and slightly matching blue pattern pocket square. The suit this time, is free to take the spotlight without the restraints of a coat hiding some of its finer details. Layer with a turtleneck as I have done here for a look that translates well between day and evening. In either a more professional atmosphere, or just stylishly casual. White sneakers optional and can easily be swapped out for boots or dress shoes (like the monks from the first look for example).
#3 - Summer
Finally, enter the warmer months. Where wearing wool is technically very much still an option, your choices of accessories and styling is limited by the heat (or unbearable humidity as it can be out in Virginia sometimes). And this summer I’m going to be taking more inspiration from the 70’s era, so that’s what I look towards when styling this suit here. For the footwear this time, I went all summer vibes with a pair of light brown suede penny loafers, and go no-show socks to show some of that ankle (or just no socks in my case, I got lazy and it was hot). Then roll up your sleeves and style over a bold patterned (and slightly loser fitting) abstract spread collar shirt for that real vintage-ish vibe. Accessorize as desired.
Thanks for reading!