Do you have some tweed hiding away in your wardrobe because you’re unsure how to style it properly? This simple style guide will show you how to pull off and what to style with this staple item of menswear fashion.
Tweed jackets are a great item to own. Whether you’re trying to smarten your look or whether you simply want to mix up your office outfit, there is a way to style them as they’re extremely versatile. If you don’t have one already, it’s time to join the tweed revolution. A piece of clothing that people originally saw as stereotypically old or ‘nerdy’ is now one of the most stylish items a man can own.
You can wear tweed jackets in both formal and smart casual looks. Unlike a proper suit blazer, the material of tweed stops this piece from becoming too tied down to one style. Instead, it’s an extremely versatile and stylish item of clothing that you can wear in many different situations.
Wearing this staple item of men’s fashion can be deceptively tricky, and a lot of men become stuck on how to wear their tweed, resulting in it sitting unused in the wardrobe. So, to show you exactly how it’s done, here’s a list of the best ways to wear a tweed jacket.
To start us off, let’s look at the jacket itself. As tweed is more of an informal fabric, you probably won’t wear it in a business context very often. It’s a relatively thick and sturdy material, great for colder weather. You’ll find it available in a variety of colours and patterns. You might automatically think of a tweed jacket to come in a traditional green colour, however, brown and grey tweed is just as traditional and provides a more versatile pallet to work with.
For an excellent smart casual style, try combining a khaki, brown or grey coloured jacket with a crisp button-down shirt. Add a pair of denim jeans to stop the outfit from becoming too formal, and finish it off with some leather boots. To dress up, some Chelsea boots will complement the look; to dress down, opt for some Dr Martens.
If you’re wearing your jacket as part of a formal outfit, say to a wedding or christening, then we’d suggest switching up the colours you match it with. It’s not like your usual blazer, where you have to match it with the accompanying trousers, so you can afford to be a little more adventurous. Some blue tonal colours will work well for this look.
Smart Tweed Jacket Outfit
Get yourself a smart, pale blue shirt to go underneath the jacket. You can pair this with a printed tie to make the outfit a little more interesting and unique if it’s all feeling a little neutral. If you don’t own a pale blue shirt then you really should look at investing in one – every guy needs (at least) a white, blue and black shirt in their collection. You don’t need a flashy expensive one to do the job, either.
Grey suit trousers are a safe bet when looking to match a pair with your tweed jacket. No matter what colour the jacket is, grey will complement the outfit and make sure that it isn’t too dark. Grey is also a good choice as it makes it a lot easier to match a pair of shoes. If you’re unsure about what shirt to wear, play safe and go for a white one. If suit trousers really aren’t for you, a pair of chinos will also suffice. If you go down this route, make sure they are tailored chinos as opposed to baggy or wide-leg ones.
Both black and brown leather shoes will suit this look with a tweed jacket. For a classic look, a pair of brogues is a strong choice. You could also wear some loafers as they come in different styles, such as tassel and penny, so you can customise them how you like. When wearing loafers, you can either go for the socks or no socks look. A quality pair of wool socks will take you far with this look – as well as keeping you warm for the winter – however, the sockless look is easier to achieve than you may think. If you’re feeling a bit adventurous, then why not try out the less mainstream, but equally as stylish – and our personal favourite – monk shoe.
If you’re heading on date night, or even to your local, a tweed jacket is a great option to help you stand out from the crowd. A smart casual look gives you a few more options on how to mix your outfit up, so it all depends on how relaxed you want to go. It’s still a good idea to keep the look quite smart, and it’s really the trousers that change the look here.
Smart Casual Tweed Jacket Outfit
Here’s where you’ve got options. If you want a much more casual look then opt for a plain white crew neck T-shirt. It’s the staple item that can be worn in a million different looks, so make sure you’ve got three or four good ones that fit you perfectly.
If you still want to keep it relatively smart, then just throw on a light blue Oxford or dress shirt. Matching it with more casual legwear will ensure you don’t look overly smart, so don’t be afraid to wear a button up, even for a less formal look. If the temperatures are a lot lower and you want something more on trend, try a roll neck. The high neck will complement the deep V of the tweed blazer.
When it comes to trousers, it’s all about jeans and chinos. Black is a great colour to wear when you want to produce a sleek look that combines nicely with the texture of tweed. A pair of slim-fit black jeans will serve you the best – skinny jeans are a bit too 2015 now.
We’d suggest finishing this outfit how you did the first one – with a decent pair of shoes. The right footwear is the best way to complete an outfit9 and can really help cement the look you’re going for. If you’re feeling super casual then try a pair of plain white canvas shoes – just remember to keep those shoes pearly white. For a more formal finish, like the first outfit, go for a good pair of loafers or brogues – they won’t let you down.
Finally, if you don’t have an event to go to, and just want to know how to wear a tweed jacket casually, you’ll be happy to know that there are many ways to do this. Choosing a jacket in a more versatile and textured colour like blue will help make your tweed more suited to a casual look.
With a casual outfit, as there’s less pressure to dress up, you’re in a better position to experiment with layering and colours. It’s easy to try out different pieces and see what compliments each one. A grey knitwear jumper is great if you’re looking to create an interesting textured look. The blue and grey combo produces a nice colour palette for your outfit.
For a casual look, you will want to stick with jeans again. Overly relaxed pieces like shorts and joggers won’t match the look of your jacket in the slightest. However, this doesn’t mean you’re trouser choice has to restrict you. Try matching your tops with some tapered jeans or lightweight straight leg chinos. Cuff them to add a more relaxed twist. These will be extremely comfortable, as well as going with the casual tone of the look perfectly.
When it comes to footwear, it’s all about comfortable and casual shoes. Trainers and plimsolls are an obvious go-to option in this situation, but because you’re wearing a blazer, you don’t want to be wearing overly casual trainers. Leave your flashy Air Jordan’s in the cupboard and stick with subtle sneakers like this pair from Converse. White trainers are a perfect way to keep your outfit looking casual, as well as being subtly stylish.
Caring for Tweed
Back in the day, tweed was 100% wool, pretty scratchy, very warm and made for hiking through fields and rivers. The likelihood of it being washed if it got a few stains were fairly low. Nowadays, it’s expected for people to have clean clothes. Unfortunately, dealing with 100% wool is a little more difficult when it comes to washing. If you’ve got a little extra cash, then dry cleaning is the answer. But, under no circumstances, should you throw it in the washing machine. It will shrink and you’ll be left with something unwearable. Here are a few tips if you want to freshen up your tweed jacket.
- If you’ve had it stored for a while and it’s smelling a little musty, a good deodoriser, like the wash spray from Mr Black will freshen it up without affecting the material.
- If you’ve got stains down the front of your jacket, dab it lightly with a damp sponge, or use small circling motions on tougher stains.
- You can actually vacuum your tweed jacket, as long as you use an applicator and are careful not to pull at any of the stitching. This will keep it free from dust and debris.
- Lastly, a good clean with a stiff brush from time to time will help keep your jacket looking smart and neat.
The origin of tweed goes back for centuries, to the Scottish Outer Hebrides, where the people living there knew a thing or two about bad weather. It was hand woven from wool, creating a sturdy material to protect the wearer from the harsh elements. It became so popular that, by the 1830s, the rich decided they wanted in on the style and began sporting elegant Estate Tweeds.
By introducing new colours such as red, these estate blazers were different from the original colourings of traditional tweed jackets. Over the years, the design and uses for tweed have seen a lot of changes. Tweed jackets have become more centred on style and look, as opposed to practicality.
Fast forward to the modern day and tweed is available in a variety of ways. If you can find it, it’s still possible to buy tweed jackets made from 100% wool. However, it’s now more common to find a tweed jacket in a blend of different fabrics or materials. This makes them cheaper, and easier to wash. However, it does take away from the authenticity of the piece slightly.
Versatile ways to Wear your Tweed Jacket
- Get the fit right. When wondering what to wear with a tweed jacket, the main thing is to know your body and find a tweed blazer that’s snug, but not too tight.
- It’s versatile. You can dress the outfit down with pieces such as jeans and casual shoes like a pair of clean white trainers.
- For a formal look wear your jacket with suit trousers and formal shoes like brogues. Other smart shoe options include Oxfords, monk shoes and loafers with or without socks.
- Maintain your jacket properly. Don’t machine wash it and hang it up properly. Looking after your tweed is essential to make sure you get the most wear out of it.
On That Note
The tweed jacket is probably one of the most versatile traditional pieces of outerwear fashion that you can add to your wardrobe, for both formal and smart casual outfits. Thanks to its minimal look, it’s easy to incorporate into your outfits, and if you take care of it, it’ll last you years. You can match it with a variety of colours and you don’t have to feel limited to wearing the same colour trousers as you would with a normal suit – not that tricky, is it? So, if you haven’t already, you best add one to the collection.