Three essential spring coats
The outerwear options to take you from now until summer
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Spring – the season of fresh starts and new perspectives. All around you, flowers are blooming and the days are getting longer. The first outside beers of the season have been drunk, and someone, somewhere, has unwisely dusted off their shorts.
With the weather being sunnier, warmer, and more forgiving all-round, now is the ideal time to take a few risks with your wardrobe. After a British winter spent hibernating in dark coats and navy jumpers, your inner style rebel needs his turn in the sun. Luckily for you, Thread stylist Freddie Kemp has a few tricks up his sleeves. These simple ways to push the boat out will make you feel happier and look more distinctive. After all, life – and springtime – is too short to play it safe.
Why you should try it: Most guys default to cotton or linen when the sun comes out, and that’s fine, but there’s an easy win here. By swapping to seersucker, not only will you reduce your chances of showing up anywhere in the same outfit as someone else, but you also don't have to worry about overheating.
“It’s linen without the hassle,” says Freddie. “Linen requires so much maintenance to stop it from looking unkempt, and I think seersucker is a really nice way to alleviate that. It’s only ever done in lighter colours, sometimes navy, but quite often blue and white so it’s perfect for spring. Seersucker also has that really nice texture, which gives you a more relaxed feel. It’s lightweight, sits well and lends itself to an informal approach to tailoring.”
How to wear it: Seersucker works for smart tailored outfits, so think chinos but not jeans. “As a blazer, it’s more dressed down than wool or your smarter suits. You can get more casual styles in the same fabric too.”
What to look for: “It’s a bit more robust than linen so I guess don’t worry too much here,” says Freddie. “It’s a forgiving fabric, so you don’t need to stress over the stitching and the finer details.”
Why you should try it: “It’s a new colour that has become one of our favourites from all the fashion shows,” says Freddie. “Most guys will stick to paler shades of neutrals, but every season it’s nice to try something different. Colour is an easy way to do that, as you can get these colours on great classic pieces so it doesn’t feel like a huge step into the unknown. You won’t be alone.”
How to wear it: Freddie recommends limiting yourself to one lavender item in your outfit, but certainly not in your wardrobe. “It’s shown here as a jumper, but it’s also great as a t-shirt, shoes, or socks.”
What to look for: “It is a colour that people are a bit ambiguous around,” says Freddie. “A lot of shades could be classified as lavender, so I would steer more towards the purple-y shades than the pink. It’s more flattering and easier to wear. Although pinkish lavender works as well, the purple-y lavender really lends itself to pairing with light blue – which a lot of guys already have in their wardrobes.”
Why you should try it: “It’s an accessory that is quite new to menswear,” says Freddie. “It’s been on the catwalks and it’s been endorsed by younger generations for a couple of years now, but it’s now appropriate en masse. Although it definitely has youthful connotations, it’s amazingly practical as well. Having your pockets full really weighs you down, feels uncomfortable and it ruins the lines of your clothes.”
How to wear it: As Freddie points out, the best way to still get the practicality of a cross-body bag without having it on full display is to wear it under your outerwear. But really, wear it wherever feels comfortable. “It’s a youthful streetwear look, so that’s how we encourage you to wear it." Think jeans, hoodies and jackets.
What to look for: “Go for a neutral or plain colour,” says Freddie. Not only does this make it easier to style, but it stops the accessory from being too attention-seeking.
Why you should try it: “It’s a risk style-wise because when you think of denim, you think blue, whereas this is a noticeable change from the norm,” says Freddie. White's also a practical risk when the weather's unpredictable. But that just means that the rewards will be all the greater when you master it.
How to wear it: “It’s an accessible styling move because a denim jacket or jeans are everyday pieces, so it won’t feel as daunting. When it comes to styling it, white denim would look great with lavender or any of those lighter tones. Then, you’ve got balance and a cohesive look.”
What to look for: “Nothing that feels too standout,” says Freddie. You want your only daring move to be the choice of colour, so don’t double-down in a pair of white dungarees.
Words: Theresa Harold
Photography: Mark Sanders
Styling: Freddie Kemp