Saturday, April 14, 2018

The Navy Blazer: Double Breasted or Single?

All Photos by Salt Water New England
One version:
"The origin of the blazer goes back to the Captain of the frigate HMS Blazer, who in 1837 was faced with a visit to his ship by Queen Victoria.  To smarten up his shabby-looking crew the Captain had short jackets in navy blue serge, with brass Royal Navy buttons, made up for his men."
- Paul Keers <http://www.keers.co.uk/, http://amzn.to/2hiAM0B>, A Gentleman's Wardrobe 

"Blazers always work."  (Wharf Rat)

Shares a Common Ancestor with the Blazer 

"Do you prefer the look of a sack or darted blazer?" (Comment) 





Scanned in from a Saved 1961 J. Press Brochure





Ralph Lauren at Brown Graduation

Shares a Common Ancestor with the Blazer 

Shares a Common Ancestor with the Blazer 




Shares a Common Ancestor with the Blazer 



"Here at the boarding school where I teach, we have a cappella groups from Princeton, Yale, and Middlebury stop in to perform almost yearly, always in blue blazers, and always to a good audience of enthusiastic students." (Michael)

"At my old school (I will not mention a name, as I have decidedly mixed feelings about the place, but it is on the short list of “elite” schools), I never once heard the word prep used in conversation. We were all aware, however, of our unique circumstance: that is we were away from our families, in complete isolation, with our only connection to the outside world, a Sunday newspaper. Being from Boston, I of course took the New York Times. We were often critical of each other, living in such close quarters, and developed quick wits and sharp tongues. We wouldn’t have forgiven a student for his inability to locate Nantucket on a map, even if that student happened to be a Thai prince who had previously studied in Bangkok and London. And God help the student whose blazer was purchased at Sears."  (MGC)



"The crests of the waves are the most appropriate for blazer pockets and buttons.  Yacht and rowing clubs are followed by college and regimental crests, embroidered in heavy gold wire, with hemispherical crested buttons in brass or gilt keeping to the original Navy uniform tradition." 
- Paul Keers <http://www.keers.co.uk/, http://amzn.to/2hiAM0B>, A Gentleman's Wardrobe 


"I suppose we all send messages to the world with our clothing choices, whether we admit it or not. But discretion might be the watchword here. Brown blazer buttons are the perfect example. They are subtle and barely noticeable. If one is offended by blazer buttons, one is standing too close, which is far more offensive." (MGC)
Father (with Camera) in Blazer

Father's Blazer, NOT Father's Bow Tie nor Pocket Square


THIS is Father's Bow Tie, no Pocket Square


Shares a Common Ancestor with the Blazer 

Shares a Common Ancestor with the Blazer 


A Precursor to the Blazer

28 comments:

  1. I never knew the story of HMS Blazer until now. I will forever note whilst donning my blazer, "This jacket was made for a queen's visit."

    I love blazers. They are always right and easy to match with shirt, tie, etc. I prefer a sack style, and have a few from the usual suspects. When I'm feeling frisky, though, I'll wear one from Paul Stuart. Still undarted, just shaped a little more than usual.

    Aiken

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  2. Any suggestions for a smart navy blazer for women? My Sewell (their ladies line whose name escapes me...Christian Banks maybe) navy blazer with monogrammed blazer buttons no longer fits properly.

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  3. I have always worn a single breasted blazer while the ladies wore double breasted blazers.

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  4. Single. While I am a bit of an Anglophile, I see the double-breasted as more British than American.
    To me, a single breasted navy blazer, a light blue or white OCBD, khakis, a nice tie, well, it works for parties, weddings, church, all summer, it's a classic look.

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  5. I prefer double-breasted navy blazers (especially on men) but I can't wear them. I'm too, well ~ I'm not thin enough. The single-breasted is much more slimming.

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    Replies
    1. Same here, Susan. I haven't worn a double-breasted blazer in decades. I still miss them!

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  6. Double breasted always seems more formal; never realized, but maybe it's the HMS connection. Most times I reach for single, unless an occasion calls to be 'suited'.

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  7. Both, if possible; but if one has to choose only one, it should be single breasted.

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  8. Question for the community: Is there any type of pocket crest that is appropriate/ acceptable to wear on a navy blazer that does not have some specific meaning (ie club affiliation)?

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    Replies
    1. In the South, specifically Texas, no crest.

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  9. A Navy blue blazer is one of the most versatile clothing items a person can own, and everyone should own one. I agree with Anonymous at 05:25, if only one, it should be single breasted. Aside from my Navy dress blues, I have owned both, but presently only a single breasted version.

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  10. I routinely wear and enjoy four different blazers: two single-breasted and two double-breasted of various weights. They seem to go with almost anything else in my wardrobe and look good with or without a necktie.

    Best Regards,

    Heinz-Ulrich von B.

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  11. The pictures of the Naval ROTC Midshipmen as part of this blazer article are very misplaced. They are not wearing blazers. The sack coat with the single fowled anchors on their lapels is part of a complete uniform and is more akin to a suit jacket than a stand-alone blazer.

    Upon commissioning as Ensigns, they will add the single gold stripe and star or other branch insignia above the stripe and remove the anchors from the lapels. That jacket is NEVER worn alone.

    Paul Connors
    US Navy OCS 1982

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  12. If you've actually been in the Navy then double is fine otherwise it's a bit Ostentatious .

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    1. Now, now. Let's not get silly about it.

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    2. IF you've been in the Navy, and worn Service Dress Blues, it's doubtful you'd opt for double-breasted. Except for the fortunate few, most of us would never fit in our SDBs any longer!

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  13. Single-breasted with brass buttons works every time it's tried - with khakis and an open neck shirt (polo, button down, etc.), or with dress slacks, dress shirt, tie, and cuff links - or almost anywhere in between!!!

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  14. BTW, the Navy had a version of dress blue called Service Dress Blue Yankee. We always said Yankee stood for “yachting”. I never wore it because there were never any occasions when it was mandated or authorized. https://catalog.archives.gov/id/6368782

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  15. I certainly enjoyed your lovely photos.

    In my opinion, one should choose what they think makes them feel and look their best. On a tall, slender individual, and double-breasted blazer looks quite smart. The same blazer on a short, stocky person can look clownish. A short, stocky person, I think, looks best in a single-breasted style.

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  16. Three singles. One for work, one for special occasions and one for just knocking around. Rotate them for as one wears out and replace the special occasion with a new one. Always thought of opening a bar/restaurant "Tommy's Blue Blazer"

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  17. I've had the same single-breasted blue blazer forever, from Johnny Appleseeds in Beverly, MA. The store used to have excellent clothing years ago, more women's than men's, but always a fine selection of men's Harris Tweed jackets and the inevitable blazer. Now Appleseeds is more an online store.

    I knew my blazer had unusual buttons, but I had never bothered to check them out until now. On first glance, they could be military, club or scholastic emblems. Looking even closer, they could be armorial. I confess, it would bother me greatly to have been wearing a symbol to which I was not entitled. But under a glass, they are Russian in appearance, with what seem to be imperial features. Since I am neither Russian nor imperial, no one can assume an affectation. Besides, I am not particularly fond of Russians, especially these days.

    MGC

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  18. Single or double breasted...well of course it depends on the occasion! The photos are magnificent (as usual), thank you.

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  19. Single breasted for me. They're more utilitarian.

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  20. I own about 8 Navy blazers. One of them is double breasted, I find on more formal occasions I prefer to wear the DB. The single breasted are all different materials, wool, linen, travel, lined, unlined... because it is such a staple, weather, and function lead me to choose which I will wear. I also keep one in a size larger, just incase I gain a few!

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  21. I have one of each, both of which get frequent wear.

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  22. Single breasted, from J Press (of course) years ago and still doing fine.

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