Double-breasted is a daring look. Here’s how to pull it off…
Single-breasted is the easy way out. It’s time to double down and experiment with a more exciting look
There are few styles that have dipped in and out of favour as readily as the double-breasted blazer. One minute, it’s the height of fashion. The next, it calls to mind pleasure cruise captains, or Alan Partridge. But, thankfully, double-breasted is currently enjoying some well-deserved time in the limelight.
Admittedly, it’s a slimmer double-breasted fit than those seen throughout the 20th Century — where we saw everything from loose-fitting post-war examples to the boxy, brash power dressing duds of the 80s. But double-breasted is back. And, while we’d usually recommend negotiating this tricky style with the help of a tailor, there are certain styles and tricks that will help you pull it off. So on the double! It’s time you embraced this daring style…
Stick to the classic navy option
Image: Gary Houlder
It’s a classic for a reason. If you fit the navy blazer like you would a single-breasted jacket — matching the shoulders with your natural shape and resting the collar neatly against your shirt — you won’t go far wrong. Just steer clear from any nautical-tinged gold buttons…
From Hackett, this double-breasted blazer is a surefire way to smarten up your look with a touch of effortless sophistication. New & Lingwood, similarly, have perfected the archetypal English blazer with this exquisite piece of tailoring that embodies the best of British. Or, from Gieves & Hawkes, this navy wool option is perfect for winter.
Hackett Double-Breasted Wool Blazer
New & Lingwood Yarmouth Double-Breasted Blazer
Gieves & Hawkes Navy Hopsack Blazer
Dress to impress with a power pattern
Images: Adam Fussell
That 80s power dressing we mentioned above? It wasn’t great. Most men just went for big, bold, badly-fitting suits which left them looking less like Gordon Gekko and more like a wallet. Today, try something with more understated lapels, but also opt for a striking pattern — double-breasted is one of the only sartorial canvases where such expressions stand up.
Ralph Lauren knows what he’s doing. This grey wool option is woven with tonal pinstripes to ensure that it makes an impression, but is easy to pair things with. From the Kingsman collection, this Prince of Wales checked wool jacket is woven by Huddersfield-based mill Arthur Harrison. Or, for some real Italian power dressing cool, go for Versace’s suit jacket, boasting fluid wool and a light structure.
Ralph Lauren Grey Double-Breasted Wool Jacket
Kingsman Prince of Wales Suit Jacket
Versace Grey Pinstriped Jacket
Opt for something unstructured to keep it casual
Images: Charlie Gray
Although modern-day double-breasted blazers tend to be more slim-fitted than the traditional examples, this doesn’t mean they have to be worn smartly. In fact, one of our favourite versions of the double-breasted blazer is the unstructured option. With looser shoulders and more texture, it’s as far from power dressing as you can get — and all the better for it.
No-one does casual like the Italians, and Rubinacci’s linen blazer is light, cool and very easy to pack. Lardini, too, have expertly tailored this blazer in Italy with touches of wool and cotton, creating a double-breasted garment in a fresh neutral shade that’s perfect for warm-weather soirees. Or, for a darker shade, Boglioli’s is tailored in a slim fit from hopsack — a fabric that’s breathable, crease-resistant and drapes nicely. Molto bene.
Rubinacci Navy Unstructured Blazer
Lardini Unstructured Woven Blazer
Boglioli Slim-Fit Unstructured Blazer
Embrace the double-breasted look with a full suit
Images: Adam Fussell
Of course, you might want to double-breast it for the classic brash look. And, if that’s the case, you shouldn’t be looking further than the options below. Bold and big, these are suits in which to make a statement. But watch out — some suits cut their double-breasted jackets a little too long. Though not the below, obviously…
Gieves & Hawkes have once again thrown their double-breasted offering into the ring, with a chic maroon suit that will prove to be your signature piece of the season. Chester Barrie have a suit ready for winter weather with their Fox Flannel Eaton example, and Brunello Cucinelli have you prepared for summer, with this puppytooth suit jacket, tailored at the brand’s Solomeo atelier from a lightweight blend of linen, wool and silk.
Gieves & Hawkes Maroon Double-Breasted Flannel Suit
Chester Barrie Fox Flannel Eaton Suit
Brunello Cucinelli Grey Double-Breasted Suit
Need something to pair with your new jacket? Pleated trousers are back in — and these are the pairs to buy…
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