It’s the holiday season, and the well-dressed gentleman is looking for a festive Christmas-party wardrobe — one that doesn’t have to stay in the back of the closet until next December. He should consider a velvet jacket or blazer. Whether you drop $300 for a serviceable off-the-rack model or shell out $1,600 for a custom job, you should be able to get more than a few days (and late nights) out of it.
In burgundy, a well-cut and properly tailored velvet blazer looks dashing with gray flannels and a cashmere sweater or a sleek, solid velvet tie. A black or royal blue velvet blazer will look great with a pair of jeans and a black or navy turtle-neck sweater — though it’s a more casual look. In bottle green, it’s perfect for the Christmas-party circuit. I’d avoid fire-engine red, lest one look like an out-of-work department store Santa. No one looks as good hoisting a martini glass as a man fitted out in a smart, rich-colored velvet jacket.
Of course, a two-button velvet jacket with notch lapels is less formal than a single-button peaked lapel job. The latter can be substituted for a dinner jacket (dinner jackets are incorrectly but frequently called “tuxedoes” by Americans). For those who are truly adventurous, braided “frog-closure” or satin piping on the lapels can step up the formality. CNN’s Don Lemon recently sported a simple black velvet blazer with a bright red tie and an elegant white shirt on-air, showing that a well-chosen velvet jacket is a perfect substitute for a well-cut navy blazer.
Plush velvet conjures up kings and opulence. Crushed velvet conjures up pimps and hookers. Know the difference.
Roger Stone is a well-known Republican political consultant and is a veteran of eight national Republican presidential campaigns. He’s also the men’s fashion correspondent for The Daily Caller and editor of Stonezone.com.