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Double Breasted Blazers

Written by Mr. WellCultured, Saturday, October 16th, 2010 in Q&As

I’ve heard that young guys shouldn’t wear double breasted suits or blazers. What do you think?

I agree and disagree.

The thing about double breasted blazers, suits, and even coats is that they, at least traditionally, are fairly bulky and wide. This can look pretty good in a vintage sense or on older men, but on younger guys sometimes the blazers can absolutely dominate their frame. In my mind, double breasted suits are made for people with smaller waists and wider shoulders — and rarely is that cut maintained in modern fits. Attempts to try to tailor double breasted coats to a skinny/lanky frame sometimes result in really awkward, disproportionate looking fits. This doesn’t even get into the whole discussion of how wise adding another layer of fabric to an outfit is in an era where slim, carefully draped cuts are in vogue.

The thing is, though, double breasted coats are not out, they just have to be done carefully. In my mind, they can best be done in one of two main ways:

The Vintage/Prep Look. The preppy vintage look is possibly the easier look to pull off and possibly the more timeless. Throw together a very classically proportioned double breasted blazer (preferably in navy, I’m thinking something like this Brooks Brothers Country Club blazer) with gray, tan, navy, or even red dress pants and a loud pocket square/tie. This is a look worn predominantly by slightly older men, but with the right tailoring young guys can look just as good — just keep the coat well tailored.

The Modern Look. This is more along the lines of modern styling. Some companies are beginning to sell double breasted blazers (see: Band of Outsiders, Theory) and even double breasted suits (Burberry) with varying colors and subtle twists that are classic with the cut of a modern suit. Outfits like this are a bit more risky, but the reward is to those who can pull them off well.

In any case, the answer to your question is unfortunately that it really depends on the cut and style of a coat in determining whether or not it fits the bill for the younger fashionista. Just be careful.

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