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What are you wearing this winter?

Jackets – both formal and casual – are making a comeback. Choose a shirt and tie that belong to the same colour family as your jacket or suit. Ensure the jacket is not too long and ends just above the hip level.

india Updated: Oct 31, 2009 17:17 IST
Yatan Ahluwalia and Jojo

JacketsCasual jackets

The racing and biker jacket: Dress the part if you are a serious biker or racing enthusiast. Choose a short leather jacket in black, white or red, and wear it with a pair of skin-tight and body-hugging jeans. Ideally, your jacket should come fitted with a zip to fasten and be embellished with racing or brand logos. Complete your look with ankle-length leather shoes or high boots.

Sports jackets: Pick a trendy sports jacket for yourself (or in support of your favourite team) with reflective strips (ideally on the sleeve). The brighter the colour you choose the better: red, yellow, blue, green and white are your options. Wear fitted half or full sleeve T-shirts and jeans or tracks underneath and accessorise with cloth or leather shoes, a belt with a prominent buckle or a chunky wristwatch.

Night
Formal jackets
Styles: Short lengths with deep and flat lapels are strong. Formal jackets look best as suits – wherein the trouser fabric and colour coordinates the jacket. Based on your body type, you can choose between a single and two button jacket – but never wear a double breasted cut to either a cocktail or black tie dinner.

Colours: After sunset, always wear deep and dark tones – black, purple, burgundy and royal blue are safe and acceptable options.

Fabrics: Your jacket (and trouser) should be made with fabrics that are gloss or sheen-based – either textured or plain. Always opt for rich luxurious fabrics over lightweight cottons and cheap synthetic blends.

Match with: Contrasting dressy or plain formal shirts, slim coloured ties, glossy belts, shoes and other leather accessories.
That little extra: Piping gives dimension, embroidery looks graphic and prints add character on formal jackets.

Day
Semi-casual jackets
Styles: A casual jacket is a ‘stand alone’ garment and therefore the ‘hero’ of your overall look and should contrast (both in terms of fabric and colour) with the lowers you are wearing with it. Pick shorter lengths – preferably with a double slit (for better movement and a sexier fit) and experiment with prints – especially small and subtle checks and surface textures.

Colours: You can stick to a light or deep palette of all shades (and tones) of grey, blue, brown, olive and beige.

Fabrics: Based on the season, your semi-casual jacket could be made with lightweight cotton, corduroy or other slightly thick or coarse fabrics. Whenever possible, choose crease-free fabrics over others.

Match with: Jeans – snug or comfort fit, casual and semi formal trousers or straight cut – pinstriped, check or textured pants.

That little extra: For a dandier feel, add leather patches on the elbow and collar. Better still – try contrasting coloured lapels and lining on the pockets.

Accessories
What you can wear with your favourite jacket

Moon phase watch
Wear this multi-dial ‘moon watch’ with formal suits to enhance your nocturnal nature and to keep track of time when you are out at night or on the prowl.

Multicoloured belts
Fasten a dual or multicoloured leather or cloth belt with your semi casual jacket and casual trouser. Pick slim styles with simple buckles and colour combinations that match what you are wearing.

Frames
Add a more serious look to your business and work profile. Always choose spectacles that frame the eye area completely – rectangular over round and oval frames. In terms of colour – black, white and red over the mundane (and now somewhat dated) grey and brown.

Branded footwear
If labels matter and if you are looking for more than colour to make a statement, you should invest in a pair of branded or designer shoes. Try custom-made for the perfect fit or pick a pair off the counter from a fancy designer store – if not for durability, most definitely for the label and if you don’t mind burning a hole in your pocket.

Coloured and treated shoes
Casual day and (in some cases) formal footwear for the night can be in shades and colours that go beyond the standard brown and black. We recommend: Yellow, green, red and blue – either plain or intentionally weathered and treated to look textured or old.

Comfort footwear
While you have the option of wearing laceless, slip-in styles with casual jackets, you should always wear smart laced shoes with formal jackets and suits. While choosing the finish, opt for a matt texture for the day and glossy or reflective leather for the night.

For men in their 20s
When you are younger, subtleties work better than contrasts – go tone on tone: choose a shirt and tie that belong to the same colour family as your jacket or suit. Ensure the jacket is not too long and ends just above the hip level – this will do wonders in making you look both taller and sharper.

For men in their 30s
In your prime, prints and colours work well – not just to brighten up your overall look, but also to make you stand out in the crowd. Wear dark coloured jackets (and suits) to hide and conceal the problem areas (love handles and the beer belly) and keep the length of your jacket slightly longer to keep you looking slimmer and leaner.

For men in their 40s
As maturity sets in, the emphasis should be on a more sober yet smart look for both business travel and day-to-day office wear. Pastel shirts and contrasting plain coloured ties are highly recommended, so are single and two button jackets. Pick shirts with short button-down or cutaway collars.