6 Must Have Men's Spring JacketsWritten by Tigre Haller
Spring is in the air and after that long winter a change is needed. That means a change in temperature and clothes. Even though the weather is starting to warm up, it can still be rainy and a little chilly.
Before you head for the door, make sure to check your closet to make sure you have a good selection of spring jackets - and shoes, boots and sneakers, to choose from.
Not sure where to start? No worries. I’m here to help you out with that.
Read on to find out about the 6 men’s spring jackets you should try to have at hand and on your back. You don’t want to be caught unprepared for the ever-turning spring weather do you?
As is true with many things, this jacket was made famous by a pop star, the king of Rock actually - Elvis Presley - who wore the style in his 1958 movie King Creole. But, it got its name from another, perhaps unexpected source, a character on the all-the-rage soap opera Peyton Place portrayed by the then heartthrob Ryan O’Neal. It didn’t hurt that other suave gents like James Dean, Steve McQueen and Frank Sinatra appeared to favor the Harrington on screen and in life.
The hip-length Harrington jacket is lightweight and easy to dress up or dress down as it fits easily over most sweaters and suit jackets. Although not a one-size-fits-all cut, the style does suit men of all shapes and sizes, and is the perfect transeasonal outerwear.
For a quintessential look, pair your Harrington jacket with a polo top, a light sweater, chinos or jeans and a pair of penny loafers or Jodhpur boots.
Ahhhh, the denim jacket. Even though the first versions of denim jackets appeared around 1880 as part of the workwear worn by cowboys, railroad workers and miners, it wasn’t until the Rockers of the 1950s and 1960s began wearing them as part of their acts that they became ingrained in our collective culture. Who can ever forget Elvis Presley “dancing to a Jailhouse Rock” in his snug dark denim jacket? Iconic!
Youth culture was quick to respond and adopted the denim jacket as their own. Soon enough denim jackets were seen everywhere, and major denim brands were more than happy to supply the never-ceasing demand.
Since then, the denim jacket has become an important part of pretty much everyone’s wardrobe. Perfect for the spring, the denim provides protection but doesn’t smother the body. You can wear it with a simple white t-shirt or layer up with a sweater or hoodie. Throw on some jeans in a contrasting color, a solid belt and a pair of rugged boots, and you’ll be ready to rock out - or just look really cool.
Originally made from sealskin and lined in fur by the indigenous Inuit peoples of Northern Russia and Alaska, the Parka was specifically designed to keep the wearer dry and warm. The Parka has come a long way since its original design and materials, but what remains the same is this jacket’s main purpose. Nowadays, Parkas are typically made with an outer shell made from nylon, cotton, a polyester-cotton blend or wool which has been treated with a water-repellent coating.
Don’t be fooled by the somewhat bulky look of most Parkas. This style of jacket can be worn with your best trousers as well as jeans. You can also wear a suit covered by the Parka with no problem. Given that Parka’s are usually worn when the weather is cold and rainy, you’ll want to opt for boots and derbies with rubber soles, or a pair of sneakers.
The shacket has got to be one of my favorite things. Ever. As the name suggests, it walks the line between a jacket and a shirt. How clever is that? The shacket is a great transitional piece of clothing: warm enough to wear over a regular shirt, yet cool enough to use when you’re layering under any of the other jackets talked about in this article.
Available in a variety of fabrics including flannel, fleece, wool corduroy and suede-like polyester microfiber, be sure to choose solid colors like tan, beige, royal blue, light gray or olive green. This will get you the maximum versatility and use. Generally shackets pair really well with casual duds like jeans, corduroy and other relaxed pants. Slip on a pair of cool Chelsea boots or classic loafers and you’re good to go.
The trucker jacket was first created by a famous denim manufacturer in the 1960s almost as a companion piece to their extremely popular denim jacket. So closely associated are the two styles that the trucker is sometimes referred to as a “denim jacket.” Even when made from jean’s fabric, the trucker is usually distinguished by several factors, such as the cropped cut ending at the waist, a snug fit, pointed chest pockets, a point collar and v-shaped seams running from the chest pocket to the waist.
Today you can find trucker jackets made from the traditional denim, leather, waxed canvas, corduroy and other rugged materials. Throw it over a flannel shirt, rugby shirt, t-shirt or a layered look. Jeans and casual trousers work best with the trucker jacket, especially when paired with rugged boots.
The trench coat covers a lot of ground, or should I say a lot of your body? There are so many variations of the trench coat but one thing they all have in common is their purpose: to keep you and your clothes dry. First adapted by Army officers in the First World War to be worn in the trenches (hence the name), this coat is usually double-breasted, with wide lapels, a storm flap, has a removable lining, buckle straps around the wrists and a belt around the waist. Originally issued in khaki, today’s trench coat is available in a variety of fabrics and colors.
Since the trench coat serves to cover you from head to toe (or at least to the knee) in wet weather, be sure to wear boots or derbies with rubber soles. On drier days and when wearing a suit, take a risk and put on your Oxfords.
There you have it, your guide to the 6 must have spring jackets. Any one of them will help you be better prepared for the unpredictable spring weather. Please let me know which ones you’ll be wearing this season by dropping me a note in the comments section below.
(All photos are courtesy of Mr. Porter)