This season, two is better than one as double-breasted makes a return. With power dressing – reminiscent of the seventies and eighties – hitting the big time, a single-breasted blazer just doesn’t cut it.
The natural broadness that a double-breasted blazer brings has earned it somewhat of an unfavourable reputation. This year’s take however has seen the piece slimmed down and shortened for a more modern appeal. Despite this updated approach ‘DB’ is a still an unforgiving customer and will pounce on any shortfalls in a flash.
On The Runway – Autumn/Winter 2011
The double-breasted blazer was ubiquitous in many autumn winter collections. Fashion houses such as Salvatore Ferragamo, Roberto Cavalli and Versace, all gave a nod to the double-breast in a variety of cuts, lengths, colours and patterns.
To ensure you aren’t caught out by the many pitfalls that come with this revitalised classic, follow these essential tips:
- Firstly, the cut needs to be spot on. Ideally the shoulders should be soft not sharp and the jacket should frame your body not hug it.
- Accessories are also a vital component to successfully pulling off a double-breasted blazer. Your pocket shouldn’t be left empty as the dash of colour (or white) breaks up the top heaviness and the full sartorial effort creates an air of authenticity.
- Even with the streamlined modern variants, it is vary rare an ultra-slim frame can carry of a double breast. Double by no means outdoes the singular (unless ordering from the bar); dress for your body and size, not to appease a trend.
The Double Breasted Look Book
Look One: All Business
Show everyone you mean business by making a successful ploy in a double-breasted suit. Opt for a grey coloured version, paired with a pale blue shirt and pulled together with a patterned burgundy pocket square and tie for a coordinated and above all stylish office look.
A simple puff fold in the pocket square shows some subtle individuality as opposed to the easy – and rather boring newsreader – square fold. Go for braces opposed to a belt for authentic power dressing and finish off with a silver tie bar for a truly polished look.
Speaking of polished, a pair of clean black pointed shoes is a great choice of footwear to anchor the entire ensemble. Please remember to look after and polish your shoes.
Look Two: Office Alternative
With the emergence of the polo neck as a major knitwear player this season, make use of the two trends by pairing them together for a chic alternative office look.
Camel has made its steady rise to autumn/winter wardrobe essential in past seasons. A camel polo neck is a great investment piece and, when paired with a navy double-breasted blazer, it simply oozes sophistication.
A pair of grey check trousers and black brogues on the bottom allows the combination up top to shine. Accessorise with a matching black belt and unleash your inner dandy with a bright pocket square in a flamboyant fold.
Look Three: Separates
Britain’s best-dressed real man Dan Wood evidently doesn’t get it wrong. A double-breasted blazer used as separates is very, very right.
White trousers and a navy blazer is a great nautical look for home and abroad, although be vigilant in the current climate; rain plus white legwear is a disaster in the making.
A contrast collar shirt is bang on trend at the moment. Wear a sky blue and white (collar) number underneath your navy blazer to show off your impeccable attention to detail – the matching whites and blues are subtle yet incredibly effective. A crisp white cotton handkerchief ties it all together and finish it all off with some brown brogue boots.
A brown leather briefcase style bag is ideal to carry around your effects and the absence of any straps means your attire is kept crease-free.
Look Four: Smart Casual
Utilise a double-breasted blazer to decode that pesky smart-casual ask. Pair a grey wool DB blazer with some indigo denim, white shirt and a green knitted tie. A pocket square becomes a little more optional here although I would personally slip one in simply to fill the void.
Finish off with a few (even) trouser turn-ups to flash some of the tan brogue boots that are hiding underneath – brogue boots are notoriously prevalent in the outdoor looks of AW11 so invest in a good pair. Once again, braces over a belt so even if the jacket comes off you still stand out from the rest of the crowd.
Double Breasted for Spring/Summer 2012
It’s not been long since the spring/summer 2012 collections were shown across the various fashion weeks of our calendar. What quickly became apparent during the major events was that double breasted wasn’t going to be a one season fixture.
Now the double-breasted blazer is looking like [at least] a two-season piece, can you afford not to buy one?
As menswear as a whole is becoming much more sartorially inclined, traditional pieces such as the double-breasted blazer have become much more prominent. Designers have sunk their claws into the classics and redesigned them to appeal to the younger generation by slimming them down and making subtle changes.
With all that said, does twice the breast mean twice the fun? As usual we love hearing your opinions and sparking up a good old debate so leave your comments and styling ideas below.