Sartorial Cool Weather Cloth
The Right Fabrics for Autumn & Winter
By: Kim Keller, Tom James Clothier in Dallas, TX
August 7, 2023
Have you ever been at a function only to find your outfit was too hot or too cold? Fabric choice can play a big role in your overall comfort and appearance if you live in a region that experiences significant temperature changes between the seasons. That’s why it is important to add seasonal garments to your wardrobe that help you navigate the warm or cold weather.
Today we are going to focus on some fabric choices we offer at Tom James that perform well, look sharp and keep you comfortable during cold, winter weather.
Flannel wool is distinguished from plain worsted wool in a few ways but the most significant way is that flannel has a soft, napped surface or a milled finish, whereas plain wool has a smooth or hard finish. The soft nap of flannel wool will keep you warm and looks really sharp & crisp as you wear it during the winter season. At Tom James, we offer lightweight flannels for regions with moderately cool temperatures and heavyweight flannels for regions with bitterly cold weather.
From classic blue and gray solid flannel to soft plaids to rich and sophisticated windowpanes, a flannel suit is an excellent addition to your seasonal wardrobe. Over the years, some of the world’s most stylish men--both real and fictional--have made a flannel suit a signature part of their look. Do an internet search for names like Fred Astaire, Cary Grant, or even James Bond, and you’ll quickly find them wearing a simply styled gray flannel suit. Pair it with a classic ice blue shirt and navy grenadine tie for some timeless styling. Or wear the jacket or pants as seasonal separate staples.
Tweed is a warm, hardy fabric that is known for its somewhat rough and distinctive texture and is a popular wardrobe staple for suits and sport coats during cold weather. Wool tweed is often woven using different colored threads to achieve dynamic patterns and colors. A timeless favorite is the herringbone tweed which is a broken twill weave that produces a pattern of V’s on the surface of the fabric.
Donegal tweed is one of the most popular types of tweed in the world, and it is distinguished by its rainbow-colored specks of yarn throughout the knobby surface. At Tom James, we are proud to offer an exquisite collection of Holland And Sherry tweed fabrics to compliment your winter wardrobe.
Cashmere is collected from cashmere goats, which produce a double coat: one under-fleece that yields soft fibers and another, more robust, topcoat. After the goat is shorn, then there is a painstaking combing process of separating the fine from the coarse hairs, before it is spun into yarn. This laborious process along with low yield per goat justifies cashmere’s elevated price tag.
At Tom James, we offer a fabulous selection of 100% cashmere blazers, sweaters, and outerwear along with beautiful cashmere/wool blend fabrics for suits and sport coats. These cashmere fabrics are available in a wonderful variety of colors that are ideal for your winter calendar of events. Cashmere is exceptionally soft to the touch so it is bound to fetch you compliments every time you wear it.
Finally, for more casual looks, consider corduroy. Corduroy fabric has a rich, lush look so when you need to look smart, but not overly dressed up, try a corduroy suit or blazer. Corduroy comes in classic colors like black and navy but also rich colors like brown, burgundy, plum, gold & deep green. These rich tones go well with dark-wash denim, so don't hesitate to wear a corduroy blazer with your favorite jeans. Corduroy offers fantastic versatility-you can dress it up with a chambray shirt and simple tie, dress it down with a denim shirt or polo and loafer, or split up the coat & pant to wear them separately– the options are endless!
The fabric you choose is important but there are other advantages to investing in seasonal fabrics beyond staying comfortable year-round. Not only do you get to experience the feeling of excitement that comes with unveiling a ‘new’ wardrobe every six months, but you also get added comfort and longevity out of everything you purchase. Your clothes will last twice as long, allowing for crucial periods of rest and maintenance. Seasonal pieces often work better as separates and are much more versatile than the standard year-round suit fabrics. Your wardrobe will look more appropriate for the season/weather & have much more variety (colors, textures, patterns, etc).
You’d be surprised at the compliments you’ll receive when you wear seasonal garments, it’s a subtle differential that instantly marks you out as a stylish, well-informed gent.