Ah, the humble overshirt, a trans-seasonal piece of clothing that doesn’t nearly get as much attention as it deserves. A great layering piece during the autumn and winter months and an easy to throw on garment during warmer seasons when you get a little chilly, this garment has often been overlooked – until now. With so many styles out there, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed with it all, especially if this is your first foray into the overshirt or shirt jacket world. This quick guide is here to help you navigate your way through the fashion waters and come out strong – with an overshirt in hand of course.
What Is An Overshirt?
An overshirt is essentially a shirt jacket that comes in a variety of styles and fabrics. Some overshirts feature zips, some feature buttons and some have large pockets open pockets while some don’t have any at all, so to say that there’s a wide variety of shirt jackets to choose from would be an understatement. There really is a style that will suit almost every gentleman, which is why it should come as no surprise why most consider the overshirt to be an essential wardrobe staple. While its rugged and almost utilitarian look might seem impossible to wear, it’s actually one of the easiest pieces to work in to your outfit. It’s imperative however that you get one that not only suits your personal style, but one that will also suit the occasion you intend to wear it for (tip: overshirts aren’t suitable for black tie events just so you know!). Shirt jackets really are versatile and they’re one of the only pieces of clothing that effortlessly bridges the gap between the seasons, so trust us when we say that investing in an overshirt is a wise decision.
Get The Right Fit
This part is fairly straightforward. To ensure an overall good aesthetic, you need to get the right size. I mean, you wouldn’t go out and deliberately buy t-shirts or jeans that are too big or too small would you? Exactly. Since most overshirts are sized like coats, it’s a good idea to try some on beforehand to know your size. It’s also a good idea to try on different styles and different fabrics so you know which one suits your look the best. You’ll know when an overshirt is too small when you can’t wear anything other than a thin t-shirt underneath. But don’t fear, because you can wear this during the summer. You’ll also know when it’s too big when it just hangs off of you – an unflattering look for anybody really unless you’re keen on following the oversized clothing trend. Ideally, you’ll want an overshirt that’s sleek fitting, flattering yet have enough room for you to wear a jumper when the cold picks up.
Types Of Overshirts
There are a variety of fabrics used to make overshirts, including wool and twill, but down padded versions are becoming increasingly common too giving you more options. The most common fabrics are however, cotton and technical, man-made fabrics like nylon, and it’s these two types that we’ll be focusing on in this guide.
As with anything in fashion, the occasion or the season will usually dictate what you can and can’t wear and while this applies to overshirts, it doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t, for example, keep wearing the cotton version during colder seasons. The beauty of this fine garment lies in its versatility, meaning it can be styled and layered to suit the seasons – what’s not to love about that?
The typical go-to fabric for overshirts, cotton is by far the most breathable compared to other fabrics like wool. Easily distinguishable from t-shirts, cotton shirt jackets are ideal for warm season and cold season dressing because it’s thick enough to keep the chill at bay yet breathable so that you’re not sweating buckets during intermittent sunny spells. Usually quite rigid and maybe slightly uncomfortable to begin with, cotton overshirts will soften after a few wears.
For a simple style you can wear all season long, we recommend the Casual Lovel Overshirt by fashion powerhouse, BOSS. Made from a premium cotton blend, this shirt jacket features a pointed collar, and two large double-breasted chest pockets for practicality. The full button placket fastening elevates the style so that it’s able to suit both casual weekend wear as well as office wear. Its rubber BOSS stamp patch on the arm and tonal stitching all over add the perfect finishing touches to this incredibly stylish piece of clothing. Best paired with jeans, this overshirt will help you achieve a casual look when paired with a classic Breton tee and low top sneakers. Roll up the sleeves to channel an edgy vibe.
If standing out is your intention, then we think we’ve got just the piece for you – the Pretty Green Connor Overshirt. A garment that can be worn as a standalone piece or layered under a jacket during the colder seasons, this shirt jacket features a striking colour palette that’s inspired by Autumn. With a smart turn down collar, two chest pockets and button down cuffs, this overshirt is anything but boring. Tonal stitching throughout lends a subtle yet striking detail to this already eye-catching garment. Team it with slim fitting jeans, a white tee underneath and some low-key trainers to draw all the attention to your upper half.
Overshirts made from technical fabrics like nylon are your best bet if you feel your style leans more towards sports-luxe. Available in a myriad of colours and washes, these types of overshirts instantly add a contemporary feel to your look. They’re also pretty good in terms of providing protection from the rain and like cotton overshirts, they too boast excellent breathability so you just can’t go wrong with them.
A hint of military style lingers around the NT20 Overshirt by Ma.Strum. Its washed, lightweight nylon taslan construction with water-resistant PU coating combined with Ma.Strum’s crinkled patina technique gives this shirt jacket a rich and unique colour, making it a stand out addition to your collection. The side entry popper fastened pockets and snap fastening front placket with zip gives you plenty of storage and practicality. To finish this highly technical and highly fashionable overshirt is the iconic detachable branded Ma.Strum ID badge, which sits nicely on the right shoulder.
The Acier Overshirt by Marshall Artist is a more detailed equivalent to the one above. Crafted from Polymide construction coupled with a bold colour palette, gives this overshirt a modern and striking look. It also features a pointed collar, two large chest pockets and adjustable elasticated cuffs – details that make this garment as practical as it is stylish. The bordered zip fastening is distinctive, it increases the shirt jacket’s versatility and it’s the first detail that gets noticed – that and the iconic Marshall Artist branded badge that sits on the left sleeve.
To discover more styles and colours of this versatile garment, visit the Overshirt Department at EQVVS today. Shop from premium menswear brands including Belstaff, BOSS, Marshall Artist, Barbour and more.