Jesse Laitinen

SOMETIMES YOU JUST need a hug, and nothing hugs like a double-breasted blazer. Sure, it’s not cozy like a big ’90s era knit, which is experiencing something of a renaissance on TikTok, or comfy like the university leavers hoody you definitely should’ve thrown out years ago. But it cocoons you in its grand embrace – makes you stand up straight, feel like you have some serious C-Suite business to take care of. Like the Ironman suit; like a hug from Logan Roy.

The double-breasted cut of jacket – one where the button-closure doesn’t meet in the middle, but overlap – first emerged in Victorian times. Derived from sailing apparel (as per a classic pea coat), double-breasted jackets were originally considered the casual alternative to single-breasted. However, as time went on, and fabric got pricier (especially throughout the world wars), opting for a double-breasted jacket became a subtle show of wealth and status. Therefore, by the 1980s, it became a staple for captains of industry, titans of finance and hoary politicians. Not exactly zeitgeisty.

But just look at it now. Like little Piaget watches and tennis clubs, the double-breasted jacket has been reappraised, wrenched from the monied grasp of the upper classes and embraced by the young and groovy. The cut is everywhere right now. From the catwalks of Lemaire, Louis Vuitton and Bode, to the shoulders of Austin Butler, Lewis HamiltonPaul Mescal, Jake Gyllenhaal… the list goes on. Even Moss (formerly Moss Bros), an inexpensive tailoring brand not known for a sense of sartorial adventure, has just released a trio of ‘relaxed’ fit DB suits, proving the shape’s shift in the national wardrobe.

Gareth Cattermole

The DB has quickly become the default look for any dude looking to make an impact without having to go full-fashion. Ryan Gosling wore one to host SNL last week, while James Norton went for a Bottega Veneta DB for the 2024 Olivier Awards (alongside many, many other guys.)

It can be all things to all men. When you need to be statesmanly, wear a tie and button it up, and when you need to be louche, let it waft open, revealing a barely-there shirt beneath. Maybe a slight flare to your trousers…


Feeling good? Let that energy emanate forth from the elongated, sharp-shouldered form of a DB. Feeling crummy, let its structure serve as an armour that smooths over any imperfections. Feeling uninspired? Just get a nice navy DB, a beaten denim shirt, a good pair of jeans, a nice western belt and some boots. That’s about as good as you can ever look.

There are pitfalls, of course. Just one look at Tory grandee Jacob Rees-Mogg and the perils are obvious. DBs can dwarf you (as they do him) and make a fit too top-heavy, like you’re wearing a sandwich board. Blockiness can be avoided by making sure it actually fits (but slightly too small is definitely better than too big) and opting for softer fabrics, and/or those with some texture and contrast, be it visual or material. Rees-Mogg, seems to prefer a plain dark navy, which is funereal and ominous. But that may not be all the suit’s doing.

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Sunflower double breasted blazer

Simple but smart, this navy blue number from Sunflower is the perfect entry-level double breasted blazer.

Zara Man 100 percent linen striped suit blazer

For something a little more casual, Zara’s linen blazers come highly recommended. Especially if you’re looking to roll something lightweight into your holiday suitcase.


Lemaire Navy Double Breasted Blazer

For those who want a DBB that will last a lifetime, while securing nods of respect from the IYKYK fashion crowd. It’s hard to beat anything from Lemaire, and the same goes with this blazer.

This story originally appeared on Esquire UK


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