For me, one of the most interesting aspects of colder days is the variety of outfit combinations they allow. Layering is not only a necessary technique to fend off cold, but also one of the most creative ways to explore your wardrobe and come up with unique styles. Although there are some rules to be kept in mind, both for aesthetic and functional purposes, I find myself constantly trying to bend them and invert traditional layering elements.
In this particular case, which of course is not suitable for harsh climate, I aimed to explore different uses for essential garments such as the v-neck cashmere sweater, popover shirt and tweed vest, all while maintaining a mix of casual and polished elements. More often than not, the v-neck would find its place as an outer layer with the tweed vest being worn under a blazer or topcoat; here I went for a different approach wearing the sweater over a tee, the popover shirt as an outer layer and the vest as outerwear. The polished nature of the vest, sweater and wool slacks are broken down by the chambray shirt and camo sneakers. Accessories such as the pocket square and paisley scarf complete the look.
Details: cotton tee by Levi’s, v-neck cashmere/silk sweater by Massimo Dutti, chambray popover shirt by Zara, houndstooth vest by Purificacion Garcia, tailored wool slacks by Gentleman, camo sneakers by Asos, paisley scarf by Zara and pocket square by The Tie Rack.
Model and Styling: Miguel Amaral Vieira
Olive and Brown
Judging by the gloomy last couple of weeks, it seems Spring is postponing its arrival. Apart from rain, I must say I’m not as fed up with the weather as most of my fellow countrymen who by now, can only picture themselves lying in the sun. I see it as a few more opportunities to play around with garments, layering and mixing them to create unique looks; let’s face it: cold weather attires allow for much more intricate and appealing combinations, in a way, than summery ones.
Although I like to bend the rules of “what to wear when”, especially when it comes to the color palette, sometimes it’s nice to go with the flow and address seasonal shades. These twill CAMO trousers in a beautiful olive shade were one of the most surprising items of the season: high waisted, long crotch, slim fitting and featuring and array of details such as inner buttons for suspenders and button patch pockets, they provide an extremely flattering silhouette. The waxed denim trucker was one of those unexpected finds at Zara, a unique piece that fits perfectly as a layering element under a blazer. A classic white oxford button down to brighten the mood, houndstooth tie picking up on the brown and olive shades and waxed suede derby shoes embodying that usual Buttero roughness.
Details: herringbone wool blazer by Gentleman, waxed denim trucker jacket by Zara, oxford button down by Our Legacy, twill pants by CAMO, waxed wool lined suede shoes by Buttero, cashmere houndstooth tie by Massimo Dutti, houndstooth pocket square by Tie Rack, vintage braided leather belt and wool socks by H&M.
Model and Styling: Miguel Amaral Vieira
Brand Feature: Agva
A couple of days ago I was contacted by my friend Álvaro, founder of portuguese bespoke menswear brand Agva, to check a few of his recent pieces before he delivered them to clients. Bet on creating unique items according to the client’s specifications, nothing is overlooked during the manufacturing process which takes place entirely in Portugal. Having nothing short of perfection in mind, their offerings range from shirts to full suits and even shoes. The final pieces I had access to included several shirt models and a 2 button blazer with an outstanding attention to detail. Here’s one of my favourites, more to come…
Houndstooth widespread collar shirt with french cuffs and mother of pearl buttons
This is one of my all time outerwear favourites: the Pea Vest. Reminiscent of the iconic peacoat with the double breasted closure and wide lapel, and throwing in the mix a puffed vest model it’s been one of the most heavily rotated pieces on my wardrobe as of lately. A perfect match for the houndstooth elbow patches on the cardigan.
Wool pea vest by Tonello, cashmere houndstooth elbow patched cardigan by Annapurna 5+1, striped dress shirt by Paul Smith, selvedge denim by Our Legacy, tasseled loafers by Lottusse and watch by Rolex.
Styling and model: Miguel Vieira
Photography: Rita Lino
As I’ve stressed several times before, one of the most interesting aspects of a look resides in the small details. Carefully mixing and blending them is a recipe for a perfect outfit, one that easily stands out in a crowd.
A great way to tweak an already great piece is adding elbow patches. Coming in a variety of colors, patterns and materials, they’re an easy and affordable way to add sophistication and visual interest to your attire. Although the blazer is probably the most common garment when it comes to this add on, you should broaden your horizons as to the full potential of these patches: sweaters, long sleeves, topcoats or cardigans all account for great alternatives.
Also, don’t be afraid to lively things up a bit by adding bold colors and textures, that’s what will add the extra flare you’re looking for. Going for different fabrics such as tweed or leather instead of being limited to the usual suede patches, is something to consider. Just bear in mind that if you opt for leather patches your items will only be washable through dry cleaning. The though part about the process is finding the right patches, applying them will be an easy and inexpensive task for your tailor or seamstress. If you want to take the easy route, just look for items which originally come with them. With their recent burst in popularity, you should have no problem finding a few suitable options.
One of the pieces I purchased a while ago is this heather grey v-neck wool/cashmere sweater by Annapurna 5+1. Besides the outstanding blended fabric, with a soft touch and slim fit, what really drew me to it were the houndstooth elbow patches. This look combines several interesting aspects: besides the layering, I love the contrast of the lighter tones of the shirt, sweater and plimsoles with the black jeans, and how the shades of green in the houndstooth perfectly complement the ones in the vest.
Charcoal heavy wool blazer by Rice, Green Eskdale vest by Barbour, heather grey v-neck cashmere/wool sweater by Annapurna 5+1, white dress shirt by Paul Smith, black slim fit jeans by H&M, white plimsoles (Musa trainer) by Paul Smith, glasses by Prada, camel scarf by Burberry and watch by Rolex.