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Business, Weddings, Formal & Casual Styles


Do You Know How to Layer Your Clothes?

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Section: Dressing for the Occasion - Blog

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It’s hard to dress sharp in a wide range of temperatures without freezing or layering up like Bibendum, aka the Michelin Man. But, if you know the rules of layering and own a few essential garments, you’ll set yourself up for sartorial success. Stay warm and fashionable while putting your unique spin on your style with these tips.

Smart men know how to layer their clothing so they can dress sharp and make a good impression in any weather or climate. The key is layering garments is to combine:

  • Colours
  • Patterns
  • Fabric textures

Layering is simple and fun when you own an interchangeable wardrobe full of essential garments that play well together. Here's our take on what you need and how to wear it.


Jackets are the ultimate outer layers. They can be dressy or casual depending on the fabric and build. For starters, wear a classic sports jacket, which gives you an equivalent look of a tailor made men's suit (tucked at the waist, broad at the shoulders) without the suit's formality. To refine the look without adding bulk or excessive warmth, wear unstructured, unlined jackets.


Proper fit and timeless style are the basic traits of a good jacket; earth tones or dark colours increase your layering options.

With a versatile jacket, you can dress up or down at a moment's notice. Just add a tie, give your shoes a quick swipe, and you're ready for thateleventh hour meeting.

Need a more informal look in a hurry? Drape your jacket over a chair and roll your sleeves up. Lastly, you don't have to wear your jacket with a collared business shirt. They look just as stylish worn over a sweater or a dark-coloured T-shirt.


See how easy it is? Let's take it to the next level: keep a neat, conservatively-styled jacket hanging in your closet at work, and you are ready for any contingency.


Carefully selected sweaters are valuable layering assets for any man's wardrobe. You can increase your sweater collection's versatility by investing in a varied mix of materials, thicknesses and styles.


For example, wear a thin cashmere crew-neck in a plain dark colour as a standalone layer or beneath a jacket. A thicker sweater with a corded pattern provides a comfortable layer of warmth in the coldest climes. A V-neck made of thin wool can be worn in spring or fall.

Wear sweaters over business shirts with or without a tie. They can also be worn over:

  • Sports shirts
  • Polos or other casual shirts
  • Under jackets
  • Over top of comfortable, long sleeved shirts

Style tip: When you wear sweaters with collared business shirts, opt for V-neck cuts to keep from forcing the collar beneath your chin.


When it is too hot to wear a jacket, but you want a dressier look than just wearing a shirt and trousers, add a vest. Lightweight vests are comfortable, can be taken off or put back on as needed, and create a streamlined silhouette.


Vests disguise the contrast point at the buckle (between say a light shirt and a dark trouser). They also allow greater freedom of movement. Finally, they are a great way to add a colour pop, as well as an extra layer of warmth, to any outfit.

Layering is more of an art than a science; it really boils down to mixing and matching your clothing to create attractive combinations that do double duty to keep you warm. While you could probably master the art on your own, why not make it easy?

The style specialists of Montagio Custom Tailoring are eager to work with you one-on-one to create your signature style. BOOK YOUR FITTING with one of them today and learn how to layer your way to sartorial success.

Original idea for article from Antonio Centeno, author of the internet's most actionable men's style guide. We recommend a read!

Image Credits © Fashionstock .com | Dreamstime.com© Catalin205 | Dreamstime.com

© Vladimir Grigorev | Dreamstime.com


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