Who thought this disaster up and why? If you are chilly, why wouldn't you...I don't know...put the suit jacket/blazer/sportcoat on?
google doesn't have a good picture of this, but i assure you, its truly awful:
Its basically this+ tie:
I like the thin quilted mid-layer under the jacket thing which seems to have become more common recently, but this is dreadful. I have a Patagonia fleece vest but I only ever wear it with casual shirts, jeans etc. I would never even have thought about wearing it with a tie. It does makes sense to keep your core warm above all else, however I have wool vests, and various waistcoats which are cut for this purpose and which are designed to be worn with a coat and tie.
It's a prep/frat thing. Wearing sweaters/vests/sweatshirts with shorts is a common thing in college for spring classes where it's 40 in the morning and 70 in the afternoon. Throw on the vest for the morning and jettison it later in the day. That being said, if you're wearing a dress shirt and tie with this getup you're going to look dumb. Ideally it's an OCBD.
in my opinion there's a huge difference between fleece and down vests. I have this light ultra down vest from Bogner and I wear it in autumn over a sweater/cardigan and in spring over a shirt. it serves the purpose of keeping me warm without making me look like the michelin man since it's rather thin:
(ignore the first pics, it was a debate on with which shirt to go, ocbd or poplin.
shorts and tie would never cross my mind though... fleece vests remind me too much of hiking or mountain climbing trips.