Layering seems to baffle many people (men and women alike!) and a client asked about this again recently. Having written a post on layering in winter I thought it would be useful to do a summer one too. Although it might seem contradictory to talk about layering in summer - if you live in the UK, then you know how erratic the weather can be so you might be glad to have a few layers to hand!
Get a shacket
A shacket is something that is in between the weight and construction of a shirt and a jacket. I was with David from Grey Fox blog (pictured on the left) when he bought this jacket. It's something I would never have thought of picking out for him but I was pleasantly surprised when he tried it on. I like the way he's styled it in quite a formal way, over a shirt and with linen trousers creating a smart but very summery look.
My default way to style a shacket would be more like the picture on the right that I found on Pinterest, layered over a t-shirt. Here I like the addition of stripes into the mix - especially against what looks like a spot on the straps of the backpack he's wearing. I also like how he's done up a couple of the buttons on top but you could just as easily wear it loose.
Wear a t-shirt under a camp collar shirt
Camp collar shirts or Cuban shirts - whatever you like to call them are defined by their flat open collar and straight hem and usually a fairly boxy cut.....making them ideal for hot days (and less than svelte figures!). If it's not quite so warm though, then go for this 50s style layered over a t-shirt.
Whatever colour you choose - the pink summery spot from The Idle Man on the left or something more reminiscence of the Hawaiian shirt like the picture taken at Pitti Uomo for GQ on the right, you can't go wrong with a plain white crew neck t-shirt underneath. If you need another layer on top, go for a denim or chore jacket to fit in with the vibe.
Add a cotton or linen waistcoat
If you think you need an extra layer between your jacket and shirt but knitwear will be too warm, then how about trying a linen or cotton waistcoat? Layers of similar colours work well especially if you use different textures like he has in the picture on the left that I found on Pinterest. I also like the addition of the casual collarless shirt and baker boy cap..... Peaky Blinders does summertime style. :-)
And there's nothing wrong with playing it safe with (most men's favourite colour!) navy. If you're going to do this, then make sure you have lots of interest going on like the guy pictured on the right (spotted by The Sartorialist) - the stripe of his jacket, the denim of the jeans, the added depth of the waistcoat and the addition of the cotton scarf. And the t-shirt instead of a shirt works well with the casual nature of the rest of the outfit and if it does get warmer than expected - he can peel back the layers to just the t-shirt and jeans....ta da!
Invest in a neutral coloured cotton cardigan
If you haven't worn a cardigan before then look at how wearable the image on the left makes it look. The neutral colour of beige and the cotton texture keeps it summery and light even though it might not feel it outside! The trainers bring in the colour of the cardigan too, although you could also wear something like loafers if you wanted it to be a bit smarter.
The guy on the right is a little more fashion forward (photographed at Pitti Uomo by Robert Spangle for GQ) with the buttonless shirt and high waisted pleat front cream trousers but the colours are neutral so he still looks classic.
And here are a couple of guys who've really nailed the art of layering!
Here are some other posts you might like: