Without a doubt, I am a jeans guy. I went through a phase roughly four or five years ago where I fell out with them — around the time when skinny distressed denim tainted the legs of ever man under the age of twenty five. Moving into my own style at the time, among many others that I know, I intentionally verged away from anything denim.
This lasted for a year until I swerved back into the game, and swerved hard. As it currently stands, my rotation consists of two pairs of Kapital jeans (one a faded blue wash, and the other being a pair of ‘Monkey CISCO Distressed Denim Jeans’ with stitching around the knee, seen below), two pairs of the same reconstructed Vetements Jeans in two colourways, a pair of 90s Helmut Lang Painter Jeans, a pair of Saint Laurent Slim Straight Black Jeans, and two Levi’s Jeans from LVC (unfortunately being 28 waist, finding the right vintage Levi’s is incredibly difficult, and thus I don’t own any currently).
The point of me mentioning my current collection and my affinity to denim is that summer requires trousers (fuck). Although people often say you should never buy jeans online and that you should always try them on, I believe the same goes for trousers — and in my opinion, even more so. This is because when you know what denim you like, you can safely guarantee that the ones you’re looking to buy online will have a similar fit to your current pairs, and you can therefore be sure of what you will receive in the mail. However, whether it be down to my lack of experience buying trousers or not, finding the right fit, thickness, and colour of trousers, leaves me in the same position as people scared of buying jeans online.
Therefore, when writing this first post I wanted to talk about the process of buying trousers for summer and finding a pair that fits into my wardrobe, which is currently very jeans-oriented and therefore includes tees, jumpers and jackets that too are suited to denim and my denim specifically. However, at this point in time I don’t think I have the right judgement to be promoting my process of buying trousers to you — so it shall not happen.
Instead — my initial idea being to break down the tiers of trousers that I was thinking of buying for summer with the hope of giving you some helpful suggestions — I will apply this three tier method when exploring the summer-appropriate jackets I am looking at, with the hope that you might find some inspiration from my picks.
PREFACE: My everyday/ideal outfits goes something like this (bottom-up — TF style only iykyk). Basis shoe on the dogs, nothing outlandish: either a vintage-looking Reebok Club C, a worn pair of high-top Nike Blazers, or black Chuck 70s. Moving up, jeans as mentioned, normally straight fitting and not too long, hitting the shoe just right — most commonly without puddling. Above, a tee of some kind, often graphic but nothing too loud. Then on top of that will be a vintage flannel/shirt that verges on an overshirt, worn open nine times out of ten. Finally, if required, a jacket also worn open — if it is cold however, this whole method changes and an Atom LT, a vintage TNF Baltoro, or a BETA AR will cover the top-half.
——— I realise that describing my average outfit might be pointless as the photo will best display what I usually wear, however I thought reinforcing my personal uniform (though I wouldn’t call it a uniform) would helpfully illustrates the look I usually go for —> and subsequently, the kind of items I will explore now!
(Outfit: Rick Owens Ramones — that I’m selling currently, Helmut Lang 90s Painters, standard black vintage tee, vintage flannel with a quilted lining, but not too thick, and finally a Raf Simons ‘Petrol’ Bomber)
Tier 1 — Uniqlo
For the first tier of light outerwear I’ve chosen this basic Uniqlo Overshirt in their Olive colourway. What I’m hoping for if I purchase this item is subtly; I don’t want it to be too rigid, nor do I want the colour or the details to make it look to menswear-y (for lack of a better phrase). However, with trust in Uniqlo, I think this would make a good light-jacket for evenings, and at currently £19.90, it’s probably worth the money even if its not perfect.
Tier 2 — Story Mfg.
In the second tier I have chosen two Story Mfg. Jackets/Overshirts. I feel as though I am quite late to the Story Mfg. hype, although I have already purchased from the brand with the Reebok Beatnik that were recently released.
The first, following a similar colour pallet as the Uniqlo jacket, is their ‘Brown On Time Embroidered Organic Cotton-Twill Jacket.' Currently at half price for £182 pounds on Mr. Porter, it is priced quite fairly for a known, independent designer. However, although I love the cut and I think the shape would complement me well, I’m not entirely sold on the trees on the front. Part of me feels that it is a little too costume-y, or perhaps too out-there for my own style; yet for such a good price it’s hard to decline.
The other Story Mfg. item is their ‘Embroidered Printed Organic Cotton Overshirt’ in Off-white and priced at the same as the previous item. One thing to mention is that this is definitely an Overshirt, whilst brown jacket, from the material, is heavier and quite clearly a jacket. Nevertheless, I love the details on this piece. It matches the current ‘nature/natural trend’ that I’ve been seeing in independent designers recently — a sort of Online Ceramics but with a greater focus on design and sartorial garments as opposed to pure graphics.
However, the issues with these two items comes when determining what is worth the price! The former is a jacket and therefore, buying it for the same price as the over-shirt seems like you’re getting more for your money, although as it stands I prefer the off-white overshirt.
Due to their returns policy, this might be a double-cop situation with the hope that seeing the items in hand might make the decision for me.
Whatever my decision though, Story Mfg. seems to be all about the vibrations and that’s something everyone needs to fw. For example, their laissez faire item descriptions for the overshirt reads: Most items are more 'easy' anti fit & oversized than other brands, some are more cropped and nothing is designed to be tailored or fitted. I don’t know why I feel so proud of that disclaimer under their items, but it certainly has me hooked. Something about it goes along with their whole environmental vision they have going on (and let me tell you, this ain't no virtue signalling bs, they’re the real deal!)
Tier 3 — BODE
Finally, the top of the mountain, the zenith of chore coats/jackets, we have BODE. Am I ever going to cop this? Absolutely not. But can I dream about being in a high-enough tax bracket that I could cop this without having to worry whether I could feed myself for the week? Yes. This jacket is nothing too outlandish and it’s far from worth the money for what is is. But it’s hand made and a beautiful piece that I’d love to have in my wardrobe.