We love autumn for a lot of reasons: The cool chill in the air, sitting by the campfire with a warm mug of spiked cider, the solitude of a good fall foliage hike, and yes, damn it, we love being able to bust out our sweater collection.
We do our best to look good year ‘round, but if we had to pick our favorite season for men’s style, fall takes the cake. When the temperatures drop and the colors on the trees start changing, we take it as a cue to start feeling inspired with our wardrobe choices. Boots, jackets, hats, sweaters—every season has its style perks, but none come even remotely close to the versatility of autumn.
Layer up and hunker down, here are 10 Fall Style Staples for Every Man.
Sherpa-lined jackets were fashion staples in the ‘70s but have come back in a big way in the last couple of years. Both men and women are embracing the classic casual style of Sherpa-lined denim or corduroy jackets, and if you’ve been thinking about picking one up, now’s the time.
There are a ton of options available, like this classic from Wrangler, or this one from Levis. Sherpa jackets come in a bunch of other interesting styles, so if you don’t really like the classics, feel free to branch out and check out stuff like this one from Helmut Lang.
Peoples’ feelings about corduroy can be summed up in one small-but-easy way: cords are like cargo shorts; either you love ‘em or you hate ‘em. We won’t be caught dead wearing it any other time of the year, but there’s just something about a good corduroy jacket or a proper-fitting pair of corduroy trousers (never at the same time, mind you) that feels familiar in the fall.
We love a nice bulky sport coat in the fall; something big enough to wear a hoodie or sweater under, and heavy enough that it’s more than just a style accessory. Note, of course, that we’re talking sport coats and not standard blazers—and yes, there is a difference.
Sport coats were built for outside wear and are supposed to be looser fit, so as to fit over other layers. They’re generally made from heavier fabrics like tweed and wool, and come in a variety of coincidentally fall-esque colors like browns, greys, blues, greens, etc. There are a sea of options out there, but this one from Nordstrom and this one from Brooks Brothers are two excellent examples.
We’re all about the classic bombers and heavy aviator jackets for the winter, but in the fall, a lighter leather jacket is perfect if you’re not really into bulkier business casual stuff.
A simple moto jacket is an excellent pick, or you can even unleash your inner Joey Ramone with something like this. Schott NYC offers a bunch of excellent fall-fitting leather jackets, but their John Hancock is definitely one of our favorites right now.
Heavy sweater season is in full swing, but among the multitude of choices, our pick-of-picks goes to the cable knit variety. The classic, of course, is the world-famous Irish Aran sweaters, which are made on the Aran Islands off the west coast of Ireland. They’re typically made using unscoured wool, which retains its natural oils and makes the sweaters water-resistant. They’re super warm and insulated, and even though they can definitely be itchy, they’re the best route to take if you’re in the market.
And if you’re not really cable knit crazy, get yourself a good, heavy shawl collar sweater like this one.
On particularly chilly fall days, there’s nothing that really functions like a wool overcoat. Overcoats are longer and usually come down to the mid-thigh region, and since they’re almost always made from wool, they’re thin and sleek but excellently insulated. This option from J.Crew is a go-to.
Of course, if you’re not into longer coats, a good waist-length peacoat may be just what you’ve been looking for.
We don’t care whether it’s sunny and dry or if we’re in the midst of an early-season blizzard, we likely have boots on our feet the moment the first leaf starts turning brown. A solid pair of boots is indispensable during the colder months, because not only do they keep your feet warm and dry, but they also look damn good with just about anything you can imagine. There are a ton of styles, colors and fits from which to choose, but if you’re asking us what our favorites are, nothing beats a pair of classic Danner Mountain Lights.
Oh, come on. You knew we weren’t going to put together a fall fashion staple guide without a nod to everyone’s check-patterned favorite.
Flannels are out in full swing when the leaves start turning, and one of the reasons everybody loves them so much is because they’re a functional and generally light layer that can come off when the morning chill dissipates, and they look great with everything from denim and leather, to cords and tweed. They just work.
In the summer months, we’re no strangers to classic Carhartt Chambrays. They’re light, breathable, and can be worn anywhere. But when temperatures drop and we need something more, heavy denim—when styled right—is an awesome wardrobe addition. Selvedge denim will run you a little more, but trust us when we say there’s honestly nothing like it if you can find a quality, heavy button down. Brands like J.Crew have some great options, or if your pockets are a little deeper, you can go for the Levi’s Vintage Clothing options.
At any other time, for any other style guide, we would steer way clear of any kind of driver or flat cap. This isn’t the ‘90s, and you’re not in a ska band. But, if you’re going to experiment with them, fall is the one and only time of year where you can make it work.
We know, we know… You may not even believe it’s possible. You may be reading this suggestion and thinking to yourself, “Okay hims, this is where I’m cutting you off; you’ve gone too far.” But if you don’t believe us, feel free to check out this small guide from our friends over at GQ.
Yeah. Think on it a while.