In the first article of the blog we’ve talked about the Prince of Wales Fabric. In this new piece we’ll familiarize with the blazer, an item of clothing that can never be missing in a man's wardrobe.
- What is a blazer?
- A brief history: three theories about the birth of the blazer
- The difference between the blazer and the jacket
- How to style it?
- Three common mistakes to avoid when wearing a blazer
What is a blazer?
Historically, a blazer has been a garment able to express belonging to a certain community, be it academic or sports related. Apart from the conceptual definitions, today at least one thing is certain: the blazer is navy blue. It can be formal or casual, depending on the style – double or single breasted – and on the details such as buttons and pockets. But let’s discover the three main theories about its origins.
A brief history: three theories about the birth of the blazer
There are several theories about the birth of the blazer.
- According to the first, the blazer was born in 1837, when the Captain of the British ship HMS Blazer, on the occasion of the visit of Queen Victoria, decided to dress his crew with a new uniform: a blue navy outerwear of heavy fabric, double-breasted with gold buttons.
- The second theory, however, situates the birth of the blazer in the world of Oxford and Cambridge Colleges. In particular, the word blazer would derive from the English noun "ablaze" which means "on fire" and indicated the bright red outerwear worn by the students of the clubs.
- And last but not least, the third theory comes from the world of cricket, where jackets would be emblazoned with the signs of one’s club or university. The small pocket is adorned with victory and membership medals.
We can therefore say that the blazer, regardless of its date of birth, has always been an item of clothing that represents a feeling of belonging. It is synonymous with elegance but also practicality.
The difference between blazer and jacket
Many may mistakenly think that the jacket and the blazer are the same thing. In fact, if you look at them closely, there are some key elements to recognize them.
Let’s say that the species is the jacket, which can be divided into three groups:
- The Suit Jacket: better to refrain from wearing it as a separate (with very few exceptions);
- The Sports jacket: it’s the queen of the “separate” and it’s every jacket that is neither part of a suit nor a navy blue jacket with metal buttons;
- The Blazer: always navy blue, single or double breasted, with metal buttons;
How to style a blazer?
Now that we understand the difference between a jacket and a blazer, we have to ask ourselves: how to style it? The formality of the garment changes according to the style we choose:
- Formal when double-breasted with black buttons
- Casual if single-breasted with silver buttons
- Sporty if double-breasted with gold buttons.
Three common mistakes men make when they wear a blazer
Very often when wearing the blazer it is easy to fall into error. Here are three mistakes to avoid:
- The last button on a single-breasted. The "sometimes-always-never rule" also applies to blazers: starting from the top, the first button sometimes, the second always and the third never;
- The blue trousers: we recommend to refrain from matching a navy blazer with blue trousers. If you like blue, well…get a blue suit instead!
- The Neckline: this one is a general rule too. The neck of the jacket should always stick to the shirt collar. Period.