Italian tailoring has strongly influenced in the development of the today’s sport jacket: Italian tailors have chosen softer and lighter fabrics compared to English ones, using more striking colours and designs that have given the Italian sport jacket a strong international reputation.
In order to recognize a high quality sport jacket it is important to pay attention to some specific details:
The shoulder: In a good tailored shoulder the junction with the sleeve is completely smooth. Only Neapolitan tailors have developed a unique technique in which they stitch the sleeve generating a curly effect (mo’ di “ruche”).
Design: A good tailored jacket has its designs that match perfectly in the stitching. Especially in the breast pocket as well as in the union between chest and shoulders.
Buttonholes: It is always possible to open the buttons from a high quality jacket.
Buttons: Buttons are most of the times made out of natural materials such as mother of pearl, real horn or vegetable ivory and are hand stitched.
Padding: Traditional Tailoring uses horse hair for the padding which allows the jacket to keep its original shape, especially in the lapel. Sport jackets have small amount of padding to make the garment lighter and more versatile.
At the beginning of the twenties, the term “sport jacket” or “odd jacket” was still not in popular usage. The bulk of the male population wore for leisure the jackets, and often the vests, of their business suits with flannel trousers and white shoes. Whereas the well-dressed man might have secretly hankered for something sartorially more exciting than a suit jacket, most men had simply not progressed to the point where they can expect comfort from their clothes. In fact, it was not until 1923 that the style-conscious Ivy League undergraduate, finally accepted the idea of a designated separate jacket for spectator sports, and based on the last version of the Norfolk jacket (1918), they introduced a revolutionary garment for men’s clothing.
From the seventies onward, designer-driven exploits subjected to the sport jacket to more experiments and manipulations than any other piece of tailored men’s clothing. The recent interest in alternative business attire has reinvigorated the tailored sport jacket, investing it with a new fashion importance.
Given the importance thus far acquired by the sport jacket, it becomes necessary to know exactly how to wear it when going to the office.
Here below our suggestions:
Monday/Tuesday: Those are the days in which you have to show your manager you have started the week with your batteries fully charged. Probabilities of going out for drinks or for dinner are very low so wearing a tie is almost mandatory. Go for a navy blue sport jacket, grey trousers and white or light blue shirt, adding the touch of a striped tie to complete the outfit.
Wednesday: We are already half way and we have to be prepared for upcoming invitations put for dinner or a couple of beers after work. Try a grey sport jacket with blue or beige trousers finishing with a striped shirt (With or without tie).
Thursday: We are ready to finish our week and I bet you have something organized for the evening. Try wearing a turtleneck under a double-breasted sport jacket to avoid extra clothing that you might forget in your way back home.
Friday: Finally the day for wearing a stylish jacket (dare wearing a striking one) and a pair of blue jeans has come. You can add a cardigan under the jacket and you’ll be ready for your night out.
These are just a few tips for wearing properly your sport jacket. Nevertheless, as every modern gentleman knows, real elegance comes from knowing how to mix style theory with your own creativity.
And for you, what is the day that inspires you the most?