Introduction

Although we all strive for it, individuality is hard to come by – especially within menswear. Whilst women have the run of hundreds of high street stores and independent retailers, vast seasonal collections and a much more developed blogosphere, we men are stuck with a small number of quality brands and not much else.

So when it comes to injecting that little something extra that will set our style apart from the crowd, we should make the most of every opportunity offered to us (as long as it suits our purposes, of course).

A Fluffy Collar

The (faux) fur/borg collar jacket is just one of the items on the current market that could help elevate your look. We should all be familiar with traditional autumn outerwear: bombers, denim jackets, Harringtons, cropped pea coats, macs and the like, but most of these are ten a penny and really don’t make for an obvious statement.

Whilst you might not think that adding a fluffy collar is particularly daring, you’ll be surprised at just how much of difference it can make – mostly because it’s unexpected. Bombers and denim jackets have become modern wardrobe staples, but the fur collar is a subtle piece of detailing which we aren’t too familiar with, and that will make a big impression.

These type of jackets also suit the more rugged, masculine styles that are currently being pushed by designers for AW13; a kind of heritage/workerwear hybrid that blends classic, hard wearing fabrics with contemporary cuts.

Try integrating one into an Americana, outdoors or military-inspired ensemble, or even a more casual and edgy rockabilly look. Whether you opt for a shearling lined or faux fur collar, they will add a luxe touch and tactile element that helps elevate the whole outfit instantly.

How To Wear: The Borg Collar Jacket
Lookbook Inspiration

Men's Faux Fur/Borg Collar Jacket Lookbook

massimo dutti aw13next aw13zara man august/september 2013ami aw11river island xmas 2013reiss aw13drykorn aw13drykorn aw13allsaints aw13el burgues aw13ben sherman aw12primark aw13
Look 1: Smart-Casual

If your style swings towards the more formal end of the spectrum, look for a dark jacket in a timeless hue, keep detailing to a minimum and avoid anything with big hardware (zips, buttons etc.) – these will only detract from the sharp lines and more refined notions of tailored dress.

The wool bomber jacket from Reiss, below, is a great choice because of its classic navy colouring and minimal design. The cuffed sleeves and waist help to ensure a more streamlined fit and the dark fur collar keeps everything just a touch more formal.

This is the kind of jacket that would make the perfect fashion forward outer layer for your work attire. It’s smarter than a Harrington or denim jacket and yet versatile enough to be worn outside of work with chinos or jeans.

Heavyweight transitional trousers are going to be huge this season, so grab a pair in dark grey and combine with a slim-cut Oxford shirt and dress boots for a refined outfit that would work both in and out of the office:

  • Maison Kitsuné Slim-fit Button-down Collar Oxford ShirtMaison Kitsuné Slim-fit Button-down Collar Oxford Shirt
  • Reiss River Jacket With Faux Fur Collar NavyReiss River Jacket With Faux Fur Collar Navy
  • Allsaints Bermen TrouserAllsaints Bermen Trouser
  • Reiss Marx Brogue Boots Ox BloodReiss Marx Brogue Boots Ox Blood
Look 2: Casual Prep

In a casual context, the borg collar bomber can be just the thing to bring your look up a notch. Bombers and varsity jackets are on trend at the moment, which has cemented their popularity for the foreseeable future – to make yours stand out, you need to find something a little bit different.

The varsity bomber is a key component of the preppy aesthetic, but whether you choose to go classic with a collegiate-inspired style or more contemporary with a tighter, sharper cut is entirely up to you. The modern examples are perhaps more versatile and can transition between looks effectively, but it really comes down to personal taste.

Keeping the preppy theme going, a raglan sweater works as a great base layer; comfortable, easy to wear and very on trend. You could stick to neutrals but I believe autumn/winter is the season for experimenting with your colour palette, so why not go for something a little bolder in orange, burgundy, purple or green?

A pair of slim-leg jeans will keep this look on the casual side of prep, so roll the hems a couple of times, pick out some striking socks and slip into some suede Derbies – perfect:

  • Uniqlo Men Sweat Long Sleeve Shirt DUniqlo Men Sweat Long Sleeve Shirt D
  • Allsaints Biwa Bomber JacketAllsaints Biwa Bomber Jacket
  • Reiss Freeport Raw Selvedge Denim IndigoReiss Freeport Raw Selvedge Denim Indigo
  • J.crew Kenton Suede BrogueJ.crew Kenton Suede Brogue
Look 3: Workerwear

Corduroy jackets are perfect for pulling off the workerwear trend that is slowly infiltrating menswear. They offer a rugged, masculine appeal, versatile earthy colour ways and the protective layer you need for the transition into the colder autumn months.

Pair with slim/straight denim, a flannel/brushed cotton check shirt and some durable boots and you’re the embodiment of a lumberjack, woodsman or any other particularly manly profession.

But that doesn’t take much thought, really, despite how good it looks. When it comes to making a statement with your outfit, you need to be thinking outside the box.

Henley t-shirts are an autumn/winter essential as they’re warmer than your standard tee and just that little bit different. An off white example paired with the brown cord jacket below is a great start; tonally similar colours work well together and if you leave a couple of buttons undone on the tee you can add a somewhat rakish, devil-may-care air to your look.

Again, tailored wool trousers are an excellent investment for AW13 and they offer a welcome alternative to jeans and chinos.

A pair of trainers finishes everything off nicely and gives the whole outfit an up-to-date edge. I would stick to minimal leather versions, rather than bold statement/printed styles, as this is a look that requires a mature approach:

  • Lee Long Sleeve Top Henley Slub JerseyLee Long Sleeve Top Henley Slub Jersey
  • Asos Cord Jacket With BorgAsos Cord Jacket With Borg
  • Hentsch Man Slim-fit Check Wool-blend TrousersHentsch Man Slim-fit Check Wool-blend Trousers
  • New Balance 996 – Size? Uk ExclusiveNew Balance 996 - Size? Uk Exclusive
Men’s Borg Collar Jackets
  • Asos Bomber Jacket With Borg CollarAsos Bomber Jacket With Borg Collar
  • Rvca Wool Jacket With Borg CollarRvca Wool Jacket With Borg Collar
  • Altamont Jacket Cowl Check Sherpa LinedAltamont Jacket Cowl Check Sherpa Lined
  • Carhartt Sheffield Deck Jacket In BlackCarhartt Sheffield Deck Jacket In Black
  • Universal Works Crofter JacketUniversal Works Crofter Jacket
  • 55dsl Cord Jacket With Borg Collar55dsl Cord Jacket With Borg Collar
  • Topman Denim Jacket With Detachable Borg CollarTopman Denim Jacket With Detachable Borg Collar
  • Burton Dark Denim Borg Collar Denim JacketBurton Dark Denim Borg Collar Denim Jacket
  • Allsaints Kobushi Bomber JacketAllsaints Kobushi Bomber Jacket
  • French Connection Atomic Nylon Car JacketFrench Connection Atomic Nylon Car Jacket
  • Farrell Cotton Bomber JacketFarrell Cotton Bomber Jacket
  • Allsaints Frame Leather Bomber JacketAllsaints Frame Leather Bomber Jacket
  • Topman Off White Fur Collar Long CoatTopman Off White Fur Collar Long Coat
  • Hartford Quilted Wool-blend Bomber JacketHartford Quilted Wool-blend Bomber Jacket
  • A.p.c. Shearling-collar Cotton-blend Bomber JacketA.p.c. Shearling-collar Cotton-blend Bomber Jacket
Final Word

When it comes to outerwear, standing out can be extremely difficult. We tend to stick to the things we are most comfortable with and that means we end up wearing very similar pieces.

If this is the case, it’s the smallest details that can help separate your look from the crowd. A fur/borg collar may seem like an insignificant addition but it can make a huge difference to the overall feel of a jacket, so it’s definitely worth considering.

Will you be investing this year? And if so, which style will you go for? Let me know your thoughts in the comments section below…

Will