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Covering all Seasons? Weights of Sport Coats and Trousers

Spring Tide

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Hi all,

After roughly two years now into my menswear journey I still feel like I'm not that far off the start line. Thankfully, I am now a lot more confident in what I'm trying to achieve with my wardrobe and my personal style (after a lot of trial and error).

For now, I feel like I have my casual/workwear area under control (1000 mile boots, camp mocs, raw denim with good fading now, canvas jackets and a vintage M-65), and have just replaced my poorly fitted navy suit with a really nice mid-grey one made to measure. So happy with both ends of the formality scale.

The area I've been struggling to plan out recently is the Sport Coat category, which I'd like to wear more often.

I like a practical approach so my question is... HOW MANY SEASONS / WEIGHTS ARE THERE? (in sport coat and odd trousers)

To cover all weather (32 - 95 degrees), should I be thinking about just two seasons, summer and winter? Or is there a third season (spring/fall)

So far it seems to me that:

Summer = Linen/Hopsack Jacket and Fresco Trousers (I just ordered a jacket in 55% Linen, 25% Silk, & 20% Cotton)

Spring/Fall = I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT GOES HERE

Winter = Tweed Jacket and Flannel Trousers.

I'd really appreciate your advice on what fabrics to go for in that transitional temperature range.

My other thought was maybe not to bother, and just do Tweed + Flannel in spring/fall and just add a coat on top for winter.

I'd love to hear how experienced members who dress in sport coats and trousers throughout the year manage temperatures.

Thanks!
 

dieworkwear

Mahatma Jawndi
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Too much to cover here.

Generally, you want to go with slightly heavier fabrics, as those will hang better. Above 90 degrees, I just don't wear tailoring. I wear casualwear on those days.

For spring/ summer, I often wear wool-silk-lien jackets, chunky hopsacks, and tropical wool. These are often around 12oz

For fall/ winter, I wear tweed, flannel, and hopsack. A heavy serge for the coldest days. Then cav twill and whipcord for trousers. Trousers for me are always around 12-14 oz. Jackets can be as high as 18oz.

For transitional seasons, worsted tweeds (what are sometimes called faux tweeds) are useful for sport coats. Gabardine is good for suits. Surprisingly, I find cotton suits and sport coats are better for shoulder seasons, not summer.

If you're buying RTW, these choices will be made for you. You don't have to worry about things such as weight. If you're buying custom, you should ask your tailor for direction. Have an idea of what you intend to do with the garment -- where you want to wear it, how do you plan to wear it, etc. A tailor will then suggest the appropriate cloth and weights.
 

mak1277

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I think it’s helpful to consider your personal environment. Both seasonal temps and where/how you’ll be wearing your clothes.

I live in a place that is regularly in the mid 90s in the summer. No tailoring unless I am forced to because of work meetings. And honestly, a light linen suit isn’t going to be meaningfully more cool than a 3 season material at those temps.

I also run hot. So I would only wear an 18oz fabric as outerwear...I couldn’t wear it all day indoors without sweating. I could, however, make use of a spring/summer hop sack sport coat in the winter just by throwing an overcoat on, which you’re probably going to be wearing anyway.

I guess my personal POV is to focus on spring/fall temperature ranges and then branch out from there.
 

breakaway01

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Echoing @mak1277 , really depends on your own climate and how much time you'll be spending outdoors. "spring" may mean 60 F to me but 75 F to you. These will dictate what your primary fabrics and fabric weights will be. In Michigan I can wear F/W weight flannel and tweed for almost 7 months out of the year, so not surprisingly my wardrobe is biased towards heavier fabrics.

I would start out with fabrics for your dominant climate. This will be your 3-season wardrobe (for me, biased towards colder temps Sept-April, but for you it could be warmer temps Mar-Nov). Then add fabrics for the 'other' season. I wouldn't worry about 'transitional' temperatures until later.

If in doubt, can't go wrong with a medium-weight (10-12 oz) navy wool hopsack to start.
 
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Spring Tide

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Thank you so much for the well written responses, that's very helpful.

My location is Christchurch, New Zealand. It never gets to extreme temperatures. However when the world is normal I do visit Kansas and Colorado in both summer and winter where temps do become extreme at both ends, but I do think most places over-heat and over-cool there houses anyway (IMO) from what I'm used to here. So a heavy overcoat might be more useful than a heavy tweed sport jacket.

While in New Zealand when I dress up it tends to be for attending weddings outside in summer - the last one was in the North Island and I was roasting.

So I've just ordered this https://www.spierandmackay.com/product/vbc-sage-247-40131-22452 for the summer weddings we have coming up. My plan is to take this to my local tailor for any alterations, and at the same time have him order me some made-to-measure high rise trousers. @dieworkwear do you think fresco is too light to drape well? What would be your preference in matching trousers for this? I'm thinking a light grey colour to keep things subdued.

To cover most of the rest of the year (my "3 season" weight) I love the look of tweed, but I'm starting to think it might be too warm for my needs most of the time. I've attached some data around my location if that helps give you a feel for my climate. I will also speak to my local tailor for advice.

Thanks for any additional input you may have!

Screen Shot 2021-06-04 at 10.58.50 AM.png

Screen Shot 2021-06-04 at 10.59.20 AM.png
 

dieworkwear

Mahatma Jawndi
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Thank you so much for the well written responses, that's very helpful.

My location is Christchurch, New Zealand. It never gets to extreme temperatures. However when the world is normal I do visit Kansas and Colorado in both summer and winter where temps do become extreme at both ends, but I do think most places over-heat and over-cool there houses anyway (IMO) from what I'm used to here. So a heavy overcoat might be more useful than a heavy tweed sport jacket.

While in New Zealand when I dress up it tends to be for attending weddings outside in summer - the last one was in the North Island and I was roasting.

So I've just ordered this https://www.spierandmackay.com/product/vbc-sage-247-40131-22452 for the summer weddings we have coming up. My plan is to take this to my local tailor for any alterations, and at the same time have him order me some made-to-measure high rise trousers. @dieworkwear do you think fresco is too light to drape well? What would be your preference in matching trousers for this? I'm thinking a light grey colour to keep things subdued.

To cover most of the rest of the year (my "3 season" weight) I love the look of tweed, but I'm starting to think it might be too warm for my needs most of the time. I've attached some data around my location if that helps give you a feel for my climate. I will also speak to my local tailor for advice.

Thanks for any additional input you may have!

View attachment 1619856
View attachment 1619857
I think that jacket can work well with pants in cream/ ivory, khaki/ tan, and mid to light grey. Would do tropical wool or cotton.

Fresco comes in many weights. I think it goes down as far as 8/9oz. Can be as high as 13/14oz. I believe the consensus on the Unfunded Liabilities thread, where people discuss cloth, is that most people go for Fresco above 10oz. But some people in NYC wear 9oz Fresco in the summer because it gets very hot there.

I live in the Bay Area, and my climate is similar to yours. All my tropical wool is above 10oz. Most are 12/13oz.

If you get pants, consider Smith’s Finmeresco, Holland & Sherry’s Crispaire, or Draper's 4-ply. All of them are smoother than Fresco, and will feel more comfortable against bare skin (useful for trousers).

IME, the weave is also more important than the weight when it comes to how "warm" a fabric feels. A tightly woven gab in 10oz will feel warmer than a very open weave tropical wool in 12oz. You can see how much light pours in through the fabric in the photos below (first photo is of Dugdale's "Travel Flannel," which is like a tropical wool version of flannel. The second photo is of Fresco). Even in heavier weights, I think these fabrics can be quite cool because of how they're woven.


tumblr_plv11wuDl81s3k0aio1_1280.jpeg
tumblr_oapd15ckh41qa2j8co1_1280.jpeg
 

Spring Tide

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I think that jacket can work well with pants in cream/ ivory, khaki/ tan, and mid to light grey. Would do tropical wool or cotton.

Fresco comes in many weights. I think it goes down as far as 8/9oz. Can be as high as 13/14oz. I believe the consensus on the Unfunded Liabilities thread, where people discuss cloth, is that most people go for Fresco above 10oz. But some people in NYC wear 9oz Fresco in the summer because it gets very hot there.

I live in the Bay Area, and my climate is similar to yours. All my tropical wool is above 10oz. Most are 12/13oz.

If you get pants, consider Smith’s Finmeresco, Holland & Sherry’s Crispaire, or Draper's 4-ply. All of them are smoother than Fresco, and will feel more comfortable against bare skin (useful for trousers).

IME, the weave is also more important than the weight when it comes to how "warm" a fabric feels. A tightly woven gab in 10oz will feel warmer than a very open weave tropical wool in 12oz. You can see how much light pours in through the fabric in the photos below (first photo is of Dugdale's "Travel Flannel," which is like a tropical wool version of flannel. The second photo is of Fresco). Even in heavier weights, I think these fabrics can be quite cool because of how they're woven.


View attachment 1619918View attachment 1619919
Thanks for the suggestions.

My MTM suit is from Holland & Sherry, so I know I can access this cloth easily through my tailor. I think I'll simply get the same trousers made as my suit has, but with the cloth below (or very similar).

Screen Shot 2021-06-04 at 1.47.02 PM.png
 

dieworkwear

Mahatma Jawndi
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Thanks for the suggestions.

My MTM suit is from Holland & Sherry, so I know I can access this cloth easily through my tailor. I think I'll simply get the same trousers made as my suit has, but with the cloth below (or very similar).

View attachment 1619924
I have Crispaire trousers and really like them. I don't remember the weight of mine, but they feel like 10oz.

If you're already looking at H&S, you might want to look at Dugdale's 4-ply. H&S prices are kind of expensive, so I assume Dugdale is either the same price or cheaper. I don't have anything in their 4-ply, but I handled some trousers in the fabric and thought it was really nice. For some reason, it felt like it draped better than it should for its weight. Mark at The Armoury once told me that it's one of his favorite summer fabrics for either suits or trousers.
 

Spring Tide

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I have Crispaire trousers and really like them. I don't remember the weight of mine, but they feel like 10oz.

If you're already looking at H&S, you might want to look at Dugdale's 4-ply. H&S prices are kind of expensive, so I assume Dugdale is either the same price or cheaper. I don't have anything in their 4-ply, but I handled some trousers in the fabric and thought it was really nice. For some reason, it felt like it draped better than it should for its weight. Mark at The Armoury once told me that it's one of his favorite summer fabrics for either suits or trousers.
Yes Dugdale is an option. I'm struggling to locate the 4-ply on their website, but I think my tailor has the bunch books, so I will ask about that too.
 

dieworkwear

Mahatma Jawndi
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Yes Dugdale is an option. I'm struggling to locate the 4-ply on their website, but I think my tailor has the bunch books, so I will ask about that too.
Sorry, mistyped. Meant to say Draper's 4-ply. It's woven by VBC, but made for Draper's.

 

Spring Tide

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I've only recently come across Spier & Mackay.

Assuming this first summer sport coat I've ordered from them can work for me in terms of fit, I'll then keep an eye out for a "3 season" weight sport coat.

It looks like their off the rack jackets come out seasonally, right? How many releases a year do they typically do? At the moment it looks like there is lot of lightweight summer options, and I see they have some donegals and herringbone jackets in low stock (I assume is their winter range).

I think those winter tweeds might be too warm for my 3 season climate...

Does anyone who's familiar with Spier Mackay know if they create stock of the "middle" weight range? And what cloth would be commonly used here? I'm thinking a wool hopsack or faux tweed as suggested above, but I'm not really sure what to look out for exactly.

Thanks once again. 🙏
 

dieworkwear

Mahatma Jawndi
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Hard for me to imagine someone finding it difficult to wear a 14oz tweed in 60-degree weather.
 

Spring Tide

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Hard for me to imagine someone finding it difficult to wear a 14oz tweed in 60-degree weather.
That's good news, I really do find the look of tweed appealing.

What temperature (roughly) do you personally find a 14oz tweed too warm? 70? 80?
 

dieworkwear

Mahatma Jawndi
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That's good news, I really do find the look of tweed appealing.

What temperature (roughly) do you personally find a 14oz tweed too warm? 70? 80?
I find I can wear 18oz tweed up until late spring, but at some point, I don't because it looks incongruent with the season and how I want to dress.

I think some people run warmer than others. I generally don't have a problem with wearing very heavy fabrics. But 14oz tweed seems very manageable to me in 60-degree temps. Perhaps others feel differently.
 

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