As we endeavour to expand your sartorial vernacular we turned to the pages of GQ’s The Handbook of Style for some inspiration where we found these nine key patterns every man should know. These patterns are an essential building block to any wardrobe and understanding their unique attributes will help keep you one step ahead of the pack. Mixing and matching some of these patterns in your suits, shirts and pants is a great way to add depth and character to your overall style. But before we talk about how to wear-it, lets learn more about each pattern.
Windowpane as the name suggests is a pattern that resembles the panes on a window. Good for: Business suits that moonlight as party wear -GQ [The Handbook of Style]
Houndstooth is a large checked pattern with notched corners suggestive of a canine tooth, typically used in cloth for jackets and suits. Good for: Bold jackets and suits for special occasions – GQ [The Handbook of Style]
Chalk-stripe flannel is a pattern of thin white stripes on a dark background. Good for: Hearty cold-weather suits that mean business – GQ [The Handbook of Style]
Pin-stripe refers to a very narrow stripe in cloth, similar to chalk-strip but the main difference is the thickness of strip. Pin-stripe in comparison is thiner. Good for: Business of any kind – GQ [The Handbook of Style]
Bird’s eye is a micro pattern of circular/diamonds that make up the full garment and is a great way to add depth and texture to any shirt or suit. Good for: Cocktail suits that women always seem to notice – GQ [The Handbook of Style]
Herringbone is an arrangement or design consisting of columns of short parallel lines, with all the lines in one column sloping one way and all the lines in the next column sloping the other way so as to resemble the bones in a fish. Good for: Casual blazers and cold-weather trousers – GQ [The Handbook of Style]
Glen Plaid (short for Glen Urquhart plaid) or Glenurquhart check is a woollen fabric with a woven twill design of small and large checks. It is usually made of black/grey and white, or with more muted colours, particularly with two dark and two light stripes alternate with four dark and four light stripes which creates a crossing pattern of irregular checks. Good for: Classic suits for the office – GQ [The Handbook of Style]
Madras Plaid/check is a lightweight cotton fabric with typically patterned texture and plaid design. Unlike Glen Plaids, this pattern favours bolder colours and uneven checks. Good for: Warm weather blazers paired with jeans – GQ [The Handbook of Style]
Seersucker is a printed cotton or synthetic fabric that has a surface consisting of puckered and flat sections, typically in a striped pattern. Good For: Suits and pants that look sharp in torrid heat – GQ [The Handbook of Style]
Sport coats that call to mind old-school vocabulary (think natty, snazzy and neat) are key to making fall looks modern. The appeal is obvious, blazers add ten style points to almost all attire. They also work on a technical level to layer, outsmart sloped shoulders or streamline the too-much-beer mid section. Add these accomplished pieces to every day, office and event; sport coats should be considered closet essentials.
[Casual] Blue Industry Jersey Sport Coat
What it does: Store those parkas a little longer. This off-duty jacket is breathable and layers like a champ, working over light knits and long sleeved tees. The unstructured silhouette assures comfort and slims problem areas. The effortless fit works with a range of physiques- no alterations necessary.
What it says: The grab-and-go piece is an uncomplicated option for those new to the blazer. Styled over chinos, denim or even slick sweats, the jacket elevates simple separates to date night status.
[Social] Sand Plaid DB Sport Coat
What it does: DB is a bolder look, best attempted by the seasoned jacket man. A peaked lapel highlights shoulders, while the shorter cut offers a more modern appeal. Wear socially with denim to attract the right kind of attention.
What it says: The double-breasted blazer has surpassed trend; this is hardly your grandfather’s boxy jacket. When worn right, the look is high impact and informs everyone of complete sartorial confidence.
[Business] Haight & Ashbury Paddington Sport Coat
What it does: Give the closetful of suits a much-needed break. Haight & Ash’s blazer is office smart and the ideal mixing piece; just add narrow trousers, pressed shirting and polished Oxfords.
What it says: The on-duty look distinctly channels gentleman of old. Borrowed from the best, think updated Sinatra, Bogart and Grant, the slimming cut and contrast details make this jacket contemporary.
[Formal] Marco Nils Tweed Sport Coat
What it does: An easy fix for the vertically challenged, this event-ready sport coat hits the right spot to lengthen and delivers the sought-after angular shape- thanks to a sharp, peaked lapel.
What it says: The jacket lends formal attire an extra shot of confidence- the contrast collar and understated motif leave dull looks in the dust. This is new, new way to dress up; style with flawlessly cut separates for an evening look that outshines traditional suiting.
Inspired by ‘70s style active wear, Champion’s reimagined (with a little help from Todd Snyder) line is classic athleticism made modern. The brand’s slick pocket sweatshirt is a surefire hit. Supremely soft cotton, side gussets for comfort and raglan detail work the sporty trend- pair with rolled chinos and kicks for a completely current look.
At GS, our goal is to educate our very handsome clients on everything style. Instead of spending hours pondering the differences between blazers, sport coats and suits, click to watch our fearless leader, Melissa Austria (long a fan of the dapper jacket) explain the how, what and where of the must-have pieces.
Vent (n,): is a slit in the bottom rear (the “tail”) of the jacket. Vents go as far back as the days when people first starting sitting and wearing jackets at the same time. Have you ever tried to sit or ride a horse while wearing a jacket that had no vents? Precisely, vents were created as a functional necessity designed to provide comfort to the wearer by allowing the jacket’s tails to part and fall gracefully vs bunching and constricting the body while seated.
There are three types of jacket vents you should know: single vent, double vent and the proverbial no vent. We’d recommend your erase the latter from your vocabulary as it has no place in a modern mans wardrobe.
Let’s start by saying that the single and double vents are both equally appropriate and timeless. However, there are significant differences in the two styles and understanding the pros and cons is crucial in deciding which style is better suited to you and your body. If you are a huskier guy and have a big derriere you may want to consider a single vent jacket as it will offer better coverage and cleaner silhouette. On bigger guys double vent jackets, if not tailored properly, will kick out and hang off your butt bringing undue attention to it.
Conversely double vents tend to be the go-to style for guys in great shape that are looking to accentuate their assets. “The dual slits (or vents) along the side emphasize the outside lines of the body; in doing so, they establish an attractive, longer silhouette that complements and lengthens your frame.” – Askmen