Warm clothes can be tricky: sometimes they look awesome in a shop but not that good when we try them on. But prevention is better than the cure! That is why we let you know a little bit more about 4 fashionable sweaters that are a must-try for mid-season or winter. Ready?
1. Hoodies and Sweats
The hood, it evokes naturally a world rather streetwear: hip hop to the punk, and more generally, a rebellious counterculture. And yet! It was far from the concerns of the American company Champion Products that created the first hoodie for athletes and footballer, especially substitutes and coaches who had to deal with the local weather rather difficult.
It was also used by warehouse workers and masons because it was sturdy, comfortable and we did not care about damaging it. In short, the vocation of this piece was a priori purely utilitarian: “Function over fashion”. It is in a second time that Champion will double the thickness of his hoodies, to better meet the needs of high schools and football teams. This addition of material developed the first aesthetic qualities of the piece. The fallen is much more successful and the middle is more pronounced. Click here to check some cool sweats!
The athletes who wore them start to lent their hoodies to their girlfriends. Very quickly the model became trendy in American high schools, because it is worn by high school students (the famous sportsmen and their girlfriends), just as the teddy was a few years ago! The presence of hoodies in high schools is a fertile ground for entry into the world of fashion: “Fashion over function”.
2. Fair Isle pattern
The Fair Isle is the ultra vintage stuff (early 20th) that was fished to feed the catwalks, and then served the fashion hipster a bit of authenticity where our great-grandparents would be our new icons. The Fair Isles refer to a knitting pattern from a group of islands in the north of Scotland: the Shetlands, the inhabited islands furthest away from land all over the United Kingdom.
It’s beautiful, full of colors and patterns and it does not fall from the sky: more than 17 threads and a dozen different colors of wool are used. Everyone had their own custom pattern, resulting in an incredible variety of patterns and influences.
As it happens, Fair Isle was also a port with significant shipping traffic, mainly to the Baltic States. Fair Isles Baltic knits receive Scandinavian or even Far East influences. The best-known motifs are OXO motifs from Estonia or the Norwegian star. Why is OXO known? Simply because it is the pattern of the sweater that was offered to Edward VIII in 1921. This was enough to get the Fair Isle out of his fisherman’s sweater workwear condition to become significantly more popular!
The most famous sweater is the iconic lopapeysa sweater. Its pattern is comparable to a collar on the upper torso. It is thick, hand knitted and in a limited color panel: white, gray brown and black.
Its origin dates back to the first half of the 19th century by James Thomas Brudenell, the Earl of Cardigan. It was after a little annoyance that the piece was born! Our famous count was too cramped in his sweater, so he decided to solve this little problem by taking out his sword and split the sweater in half.
Nowadays, we would call it a raw, authentic and natural method of making clothes, coupled with a spontaneous inspiration. Other very inspired gentlemen also said to themselves that by adding buttons, it would be even more practical. As this brave man with the wiggling mustache had the merit of winning his battles, his invention ended up being marketed around 1868.
The interest of a cardigan is to enhance your torso by giving it a V shape. Thus, the reasoning is the same as for a suit jacket: you must make sure that the opening of it is not not too high.
4. Turtleneck sweater
Turtleneck sweaters were first worn by sailors and workers for whom a scarf would have been cumbersome, sometimes dangerous. The collar was closed by buttons and, once invented, a zipper (the famous trucker collar). More extensible and durable fabric blends were then discovered, making buttons and zippers unnecessary. This piece quickly became popular with the general public. It was a model appreciated by Noël Coward, a twentieth century English playwright known for his taste and elegance.
Eventually it became mainstream and is an alternative to those who wanted to wear a garment more comfortable than a suit tie, but a little less formal. Coming from the fishing community of Northern Europe, turtleneck sweater became popular among left-wing students in the 1930s and even more so in the 60s and 70s when it represented the ultimate rebellion against the formal dress code of the tie suit.
It reappeared at the same time as the renewed interest in legacy and vintage clothing in men’s fashion. Daniel Craig wore it in the very latest James Bond.