Seven Key Pieces for Men’s Fall Layering
Alright, gents. I know you got used to long summer days of t-shirts and sandals, and I, too, am resistant to put my shorts into storage—but now the sun is setting earlier and the air changed from balmy to brisk, so it’s time for a wardrobe swap. To help, here are seven (and then some) essential wardrobe pieces to take you through autumn and into the snowfalls. Mix and match them as you will, but remember, for fall, layers are the name of the game.
Trade in your tees for a henley this season. They’re the perfect baselayer: warm, classic, and essentially effortless.
Soft, toasty flannel button-ups are perhaps the most officially fall staple on this list. Flannels (especially in plaid) remind me of pumpkin patches, drinking hot cider at the farmer’s market, and so on down a lane of nostalgia. Fun fact: flannel fabric has been around since the 17th century, so that lumbersexual look isn’t anything new.
I love a guy in a sweater, if only so I can steal it from them and wear it oversized with mom jeans and clogs while walking through the fallen leaves...but I digress. Pull lightweight sweaters over button-ups for the (home) office. Turtlenecks give off a sophisticated, artsy vibe. And cardigans go with just about anything. I’ll even let a sweatshirt pass in this category, just not the type you’d also wear to the gym.
Your next layer is a light-to-midweight jacket, and options within this category are vast: sporty cuts in technical fabrics, cozy fleece, classic denim, or vintage-inspired shapes. I like men’s jackets because of the variety, and they’re less of a commitment than a coat. Having a few lets you rotate through looks, and several of these pieces will transition into spring.
Personally, I have a bit of an outerwear obsession, but I can admit that most men’s coat racks needn’t overfloweth. I’d suggest one that skews dressy (a preppy peacoat or a wool overcoat) and another that’s practical (water-resistant puffers, mainly). I’m also including leather jackets for that real James Dean feel.
As for bottoms, head over to the dark side, sir. Choose dark-washed denim, gray or brown trousers (I prefer a relaxed ’80s fit, personally), or some comfy corduroys. And for weekend errands and low-key evenings, upgrade your sweatpants to a pair of luxe joggers.
A pair of boots is a key investment piece that, if properly taken care of, will last for many years to come. Make sure to condition the leather and, especially with suede, treat your boots with a waterproofing protectant. Slip-on Chelsea boots are your friend if in a hurry, and most of these options can transition from casual park walks to buttoned-up dinner dates.
The Kitchen Sink
So, now you’re dressed and ready to take on the season. There are a few accessories you might want to add to your ensemble, though. Beanies, scarves, gloves, and socks—basically, the types of things you’ve probably received as gifts for years. Perhaps put some of these on your wishlist. And don’t forget your mask.