***The following is a guest post from Arthur Lamber who has been a fashion enthusiast for most of his life. He spends most of his time researching edgy outfits and standout fabrics that have always managed to stand the test of time (and have done so elegantly). In this article he covers how to wear tweed with style during the fall season. Take it away Arthur!***
Tis the season to dress with style. And nothing says style and sophistication like tweed. This material has recently boomed in popularity. It may be that the younger generation is trying on a more serious look, or maybe it’s just a trend like all trends – who knows?
The fact is I’m here to give you important advice on how to tweed and how not to tweed. Specifically, which tweed items work this season, which tweed items you should avoid, and how to successfully muster the look you need to pull off such dapper clothing. After all, your appearance isn’t always made by the things you wear, but also by how you do your hair, how you tidy up your beard, and many other small but significant details.
The history of tweed is quite interesting. Originally, the Scots used to call the fabric twill. It was from that name that the English word tweel came about – which was the first widely used name for the fabric, although it soon faded for another, increasingly popular one. Today, tweel is such an obscure term that even Microsoft Word doesn’t recognize it. But tweed – ah, that’s a different story.
Legend has it (as it often does in these situations) that around the year 1830 a clothes merchant from London got a letter from a wealthy clothing firm from Hawick, Scotland. They were, naturally, asking for some of those increasingly popular English tweels. The letter was handwritten and unfortunately the merchant couldn’t quite make out the word tweel and decided that it spelled tweed instead (after a river bearing the same name). The name stuck and, as they say, the rest is history.
Now, the fabric itself was originally designed to be worn by hunters during the harsh winter season in England. The fabric proved so successful at protecting the hunters from moisture and keeping them warm that it became a hit. Soon, everybody was asking for it including wealthy American and British families; and because it was resilient, it passed on through the generations.
Tweed is the story of how something once considered casual has become a symbol of status. A class act that not only shows confidence, intelligence, and refinement, but also style.
However, just putting on a tweed outfit and going out into the world won’t automatically make you the king of sophistication. Here’s some advice on how to wear this old-fashioned fabric for the fall/winter season of this year:
Tweed isn’t just the fabric of uniforms, though they can be used to look sharper than a razor blade. And if you want the closest thing to a uniform you can get without being that formal, then tweed is clearly the way to go. Particularly if you fit into the number 8 category in the link above. Full tweed suits are definitely a rising trend in the fall/winter fashion season of 2015/2016.
A full tweed suit implies a tweed blazer, a tweed waistcoat, and a pair of tweed trousers. Imagine yourself walking down the street, looking like the three gentlemen below. People will think that you’re going to the university to teach some complicated course on 19th Century English literature. Well, maybe you actually are going to do that.
What’s the main advantage that tweed suits have over other suits? The three pieces are extremely versatile and can go really well on their own. While with a traditional suit only the pants can work well with other combinations (not necessarily recommended), with tweed, you can match anything with everything.
Feeling adventurous? Put on your denim jeans and boots and forget the oxfords. You don’t have to tell me, I know it works.And depending on the weather, you can either unbutton your blazer and leave the waistcoat on the hanger, or button up and keep the waist coat for some extra warmth.
Feel like leaving the seriousness that comes with the blazer behind? Sure thing! Keep the pants, dash the other two and put on a nice, stylish sweater. To match this look, I usually add a tweed cap with the same pattern as the trousers.
Alternatively, you can buy these tweed pieces separately. Also, a tweed overcoat can make an incredible first impression.
Imagine a world without tweed. You can’t, can you? It’s become such a popular fabric that it’s being used everywhere and for everything nowadays. Fashion designers like it because it adds that vintage look and manages to make it believable and authentic. Speaking of a vintage look, companies like Fender are now using tweed on their amps – the Fender Tweed is now one of their trademarks. Even Scottish bagpipes are famous for matching the tweed checkers with those of their kilts.
Now, I’m not saying you should buy a Fender amp. Even less so, a Scottish bagpipe. Unless you want to drive your neighbors mad.
Turning to actual fashion accessories, you could go for a tweed hat this autumn. I’ve got one. Do you know the best part about it? It keeps your head warm. And it’s particularly good if you’ve forgotten your umbrella – provided it’s not raining cats and dogs.
Also, you can get some tweed gloves, or tweed headphones (yes, there are tweed headphones), tweed ties, wallets, man purses, smartphone cases. In fact, if you can think of a clothing item, there’s probably a tweed version of it somewhere too.
So, have you decided? What tweed item will you be wearing for this season? Remember that everything must be approached with a bit of moderation– otherwise you’ll run amok of such a stylish fabric. One last piece of advice: remember to incorporate the colors of the season into your wardrobe, and never, ever wear sneakers with a suit. I guess that’s two pieces of advice. Hey, it had to be said!