What will be the go-to style statement for corporate wear in 2018?
In 2018, we see the corporate wear culture moving from the traditional suit and tie to more individualistic attire – such as blazers paired with chinos or jeans. This means that a good selection of blazers is a must-have for 2018, so make sure you have a versatile selection in your wardrobe.
It is a little-known and often overlooked fact that the early 20th century custom blazer was a hybrid born of three different dissecting garments: the reefer coat, the colourful sports jackets that were considered appropriate active wear during the 19th century, and the collegiate boating blazer.
Precisely how the three came to be moulded into one is unknown, but it is clear that the blazer’s origin is of the elite, associated with uniformity, prestige and social exclusivity.
Today, the blazer has morphed into something more fluid. What has allowed it to evolve is simply a matter of taste. It is something that is easier to sense than to define and hence cannot be confined to the rule of the law. All we can agree on is the fact that it is a tailored coat.
What kind of tailored coat it may be is completely dependent on the taste of the wearer.
The most important aspect of the blazer is its cut and construction, which is not as structured or pronounced. It is effortless with soft padding on shoulders, light-weight canvas and a more smart-casual or semi-formal silhouette.
With this in mind, perhaps the key to the blazer’s success in the corporate world is its softness of aesthetic. It is this relaxation in terms of the cut and construction of a tailored coat that underpins the blazer’s evolution.
However, the texture of a blazer is now as important as its cut. You can dress up or dress down a tailored garment with texture, and the blazer is no different.
Classic fine worsted wool is timeless and quite formal, but if you can find a cloth with a bit of natural sheen then you are looking at more of an evening blazer or cocktail coat.
Get your bespoke tailor to cut your blazer in a soft new boucle weave or wool-silk hopsack for a chic, contemporary look to bring out your personality in your office environment. Colours such as forest green or tobacco brown suit a modern blazer as much as the traditional navy.
This sums up the inherent hybrid nature of the blazer and the reason it is gaining popularity in corporate office wear, presenting it as the ultimate sartorial chameleon, alluding to its versatility and capacity to move between different environments with ease while showcasing your individualism and your personality.
Pawan and Ashish Ishwar are tailors at Knights & Lords, a bespoke tailoring house in Dubai.