Our fat cat Robber Baron forefathers would visit their tailors just before each season to commission their seasonal wardrobes. We at Leviner Wood can only surmise that laundering was particularly brutal back in the day or that the whims of the fashionable held even more sway than they do today. As much as we’d love to see the custom return, replacing your clothing two to four times a year does seem a bit extreme in today’s climate-controlled, dry-cleanable world.
That said, we do recommend that a gentleman have several seasonal pieces in rotation. If nothing else, they relieve the predictability of our dress clothing options.
For those of you who are really putting on the dog, try a little goat. Leviner Wood carries the very popular and luxurious cashmeres by Loro Piana — nothing will feel better to the woman on your arm than a sport coat or suit made of nature’s finest and softest. For holiday parties, a black blazer with a pair of houndstooth, glen check or oxford gray trousers can’t be beat — casual, stylish and exclusive. Just like you.
The traditional season for tweed here in the U.S., Fall and Winter weekends are kept stylish with a Harris Tweed, Donegal or Shetland sport coat thrown over a cashmere turtleneck, pair of jeans and suede ankle boots. A tweed suit gives your wardrobe a lot of bang for the buck as you can wear the jacket alone with odd trousers or jeans, the trousers with a jean or leather jacket. Three pieces gives you the vest to work with too.
Speaking of suits, now is the time to try the ultimate in comfort and classic style: the woolen flannel suit. Think beyond the classic solids that you already have in worsted and venture into a woolen Prince of Wales or Glen Check plaid, chalk and beaded stripes. For real inspiration ask to see the Holland and Sherry Vintage Flannel book.
Let’s have a word about suede shoes. While you can wear suede year ’round, it looks best with the heavier nap of flannel and tweed. Consider a pair of Allen Edmonds suede shoes with a rubber sole to beat the weather. A little silicone spray and your shoes will be practically invulnerable. Shell cordovan with a double leather sole will also carry you through just about anything short of a foot of snow. Wingtips or loafers are both suitable for casual days.
Finally, your coat… what shape is your coat in? You do have a winter coat, don’t you? Today’s styles are above the knee or just below and will be stylish for decades to come. Your most versatile look is a single-breasted overcoat in camel hair, cashmere or vicuña. Any of them will cost pennies a day over its lifetime of use.