Category Archives: Outerwear

Hipsters for Non-Hipsters

I am not a hipster. At least I am not a hipster in the sociologically contemporary sense of the word. I have met a hipster, and have even had a conversation with one or two, but I myself am not a hipster (though I do like wearing gingham shirts.)

For those who aren’t quite up to speed, a hipster, in modern parlance, is generally a young adult/teen who connects more with alternative rather than mainstream values, fashion, music, and the like. If you prefer to wear western shirts, T-shirts with ironic sayings, over-sized eye frames, skinny jeans, or carry a courier bag, then you just might be a hipster. Evidently, trying to be ironic is fundamental to the hipster culture.

It may come as a relief to know that you don’t have to be an actual hipster to wear a hipster. If, in fact, you are someone who your friends consider to be hip, all-the-better, but even that is not a prerequisite. As recently as 1986, Huey Lewis and his band declared that it can even be “Hip to be Square.” So who’s to say exactly what is and is not “hip?” A hipster, however, is a jacket that bottoms out at right about… you guessed it… the hips.

Designed to be worn instead of a tailored sport jacket, a hipster is the perfect jacket for a fall weekend getaway, Thanksgiving at the In-laws, or a casual day at the office. If I were building a wardrobe of five essential coats for fall and winter, a hipster would be one of them.

Feeling hip…. in my hipster,


All Out – as in “Full Coverage”

Full coverage costs more on the front end, but can often save your back end….if you know what I mean. After paying all of those premiums for dental insurance, you don’t want to be hit with a big bill because an un-popped popcorn kernel chipped your tooth and you didn’t have “full coverage.”

Since the 19th century glory days of outerwear, coats have been getting shorter and lighter, but there are still times when only a “full coverage” Overcoat or Topcoat (technically lighter than an overcoat) meets the required, or at least preferred, look and function.

In the realm of classic Overcoats, one can choose either single breasted or double breasted, made from heavier wool, camel hair, or cashmere cloth, or a blend of said fibers. For daytime dressy and formal evening wear, I suggest that you choose a solid (or herringbone) cloth in navy, black or charcoal. A double breasted model would also be a great choice, but single is more versatile. For extra dressiness, a Chesterfield, with its customary black velvet collar and fly front will stand above the crowd. First worn by George Stanhope, the 6th Earl of Chesterfield, it is considered to be the original overcoat. Thanks to Gentlemans Gazette for the photo and further elaboration on the style.

Tan Camel hair or Cashmere is best for wearing over earth-tone clothing, sport coats and daytime dressy/business casual. For the true classic, what noted author G. Bruce Boyer called “the best looking topcoat a man can wear,” a “Polo coat” – half belted, w/ cuffs, patch pockets, stitched edges, and a little longer than standard – epitomizes the masculine costume. It was standard issue for none other than Vince Lombardi. The photo above is from Lombardi, a new American play, as performed on Broadway.

A man’s wardrobe is not complete without the right outerwear. When did you last update your overcoat?

Going All Out,


Over and Done – Why Do I Need an Overcoat?

Have you seen that guy? You know the one. The guy wearing his new suit…the new suit that’s getting wet because he couldn’t be bothered with an umbrella or overcoat. Or what about Mr. “I’ll-just-wear-my-ski-parka-over-my-suit” during this year’s perfect storm? Then there is this friend of mine who must have twenty five top-shelf custom suits, but when it’s cold and wet, out comes that black, double-breasted trench coat circa 1992. Lazy, sad, and pathetic!

Over means your coat, and done means finished.

When the weather turns cold or wet or both, your look isn’t complete and finished unless your outerwear is money. It should look so good that you’re compelled to keep it on for a few extra moments, even after you’ve stepped inside, out of the elements.

Do you have that coat? Or wardrobe of coats should I say?

As another friend of mine often reminds me, “It wasn’t raining when Noah built the ark.” I think you know what I’m saying and you know what to do.

Over and “finished,”


Warm and Dry

I was standing on the commuter train platform this morning with 8 minutes until the next train. A blanket of fog draped the landscape. Only the very top of a nearby mountain range was visible. I saw a man standing there without a coat of any kind. He looked uncomfortable. I noticed that at least a couple of people were wearing gloves. I was certainly glad to be wearing my Loro Piana storm system coat. I’m ordering a new set of gloves today. I left my umbrella in the car, but I always have one in the car and another at my office this time of year, just in case.
Are you prepared to stay warm and dry during the next few months?
Maybe not as ready as you would like?
Here are a few outerwear options that will help you stay warm and dry this winter…..

Charcoal Gray – Hipster 3-in-1 Car Coat available in Olive or Black

The 3-in-1 Coat is the most versatile coat we have ever offered, fitting into the strongest trend in outerwear this season – that of maximum versatility and functionality. The second layer is actually a ‘removable’ windbreaker that can be worn separately.

Loro Piana Storm System available in Charcoal (or navy) Micro-blend, Raglan sleeve Raincoat available in Taupe or Black
Cashmere-Lined Suede or Calfskin Gloves Patterned Scarves

In addition to these items, there is still time to have a top coat, tweed jacket, and new flannels made for most of the true winter season. There are still plenty of cashmere and wool sweaters on the shelves. Be well. Warm and dry.
Enjoy the Season!