Friday, 17 June 2011
Reader question: What do you wear at the weekend?
You spend a lot of time talking about suits and bespoke shoes, but what do you wear at the weekend? I have trouble picturing what you put on to pop out to the newsagent.
Here are a few of my favourite things. Two types of chinos: those from Albam, which come in fantastic colours and are well made but too rough to wear with a jacket, so are usually paired with boots and knitwear; and those from Incotex, which are smarter despite their softening treatment and can be worn with unlined, unstructured jackets. (Favourites there: Barena, Montedoro, Loro Piana, hopefully Rubinacci.)
Continuing with trousers, I wear jeans (Albam, again – this post should have been a clue) but hate their predominance in menswear and so wear grey flannels, tan cords and brown moleskins more often.
Digression: One reason I hate the predominance of jeans is that it has removed the ability of British men to wear any other form of casual trouser, such as those mentioned above. I was in Sweden last week and more men were wearing slim, sharp chinos than jeans – often paired with a jacket and pocket handkerchief. It’s hard to get men started on smarter dressing when they only know one type of trouser.
I wear mostly shirts at the weekend, but occasionally have a T-shirt underneath a polo-collar sweater and particularly like long-sleeved polo shirts (see post here).
Knitwear, however, is the key to the weekend. Wearing good knitwear always makes you feel dressed up when you don’t feel like wearing a jacket. From the almost too-light cotton sweaters at Avon Celli, to the four-ply cashmere shawl-collar numbers at Drake’s (above), there’s a sweater for every occasion and temperature. All those mentioned also have collars, making them more suitable to knitted or woollen neckties. I also highly recommend Loro Piana’s Roadster model (though size down, they are boxy) and the Trunk own-brand cashmere sweaters, which are anything but boxy.
Foot wear is similar to the working week (these are flexibilities of brown calf) but with more suede, more boots and a much-loved pair of Tod’s gomminos. These driving shoes deserve particular mention, for they have been what I put on when I get home in the evening every day for almost three years, and they’re still going strong. Two or three applications of cream in that time have stopped then drying out.
So what do I wear to pop to the newsagents? On a good day probably Albam dusty pink chinos, a blue Oxford button-down from T&A, a grey shawl-collar sweater and brown suede lace-ups. And my three-year old, in a Mickey Mouse T-shirt.