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Even though we’re bemoaning the fact that it means Winter Is Coming™, it’s pretty safe to say that fall is the best time of year for men’s style. It’s when we have the greatest diversity of clothing items available to us and much more versatility in how we choose to wear them. Layering up is one of the more fun parts of getting dressed in the fall. It’s not just about piling clothing on top of each other to stay warm, but what and how you layer that determines how stylish you look.
Blazer, Sweater, and Button-Up
Every one should be aware of the basic layering options available to men – put on a button-up (with or without a tie) and then wear a blazer, sweater, or cardigan on top of it. Well, there’s actually a couple more layering options you can get out of these pieces. Options that you don’t see very often, but that are very effective.
If you get them in thin enough fabrics, you can wear all three together – a blazer on top of a sweater and button up shirt. I personally prefer wearing a v-neck sweater when doing this. The angular lines flow better with the lines created by the lapel of the jacket and the collar of the shirt. However, I’ve also seen this look executed well with crewnecks. And lastly, an interesting or bold necktie is a great way to draw attention to where the action is happening.
Henley As A Base Layer
This might be one of my favorite ways to wear a henley – under a button-up shirt, with an extra button unbuttoned up top and the sleeves (of both the button-up and the henley) rolled up to expose the henley underneath at the edges.
When pairing henleys and button-ups just be mindful of the textures. The thicker, thermal-style henleys will pair best with shirts made of thicker material – such as denim or flannel. If you want to wear a regular cotton button-up, then a thinner cotton henley will work best. Jeans and chinos will work with both of these choices.
Button Down Shirt, Crew Neck Sweatshirt, and Jacket
This is a great looking combo if done right. Start with a button down (not a dress shirt). Anything goes here, the more patterns the better for this base layer. On top of that, throw on a crewneck sweatshirt. We’re choosing crewnecks sweatshirts because v-necks are the typical choice, and we want you to try something different. And since you’ll be wearing a sweatshirt, keep your jacket thin and light.
A quick tip for wearing a button down under a crew neck, keep the collar of the button down tucked into the collar of the sweatshirt. And for a cleaner look, tuck in the button down.
Chinos will look great with this layer combo.
V-neck T-shirt, Henley, and Puffer Vest
This might be my favorite layering combination, that’s simple. Start with a basic, solid colored v-neck tee shirt as your base layer. On top of that, choose a henley that compliments the color of the tee. The henley doesn’t necessarily need to be a solid color, it can it patterned, striped, or textured. Then on top, throw on your puffer vest. Easy.
Down low, jeans will work best with this combination.
What Not to do
It can be easy to get out of control with layering. Make sure your colors are all working together nicely. If you’re uneasy about colors, check out our guide to color matching.
Be cautious when mixing patterns. It’s very easy to have them clash, unless you really know what you’re doing. Get familiar with patterns before throwing a bunch of them together. To play it safe, work with one pattern, and have the rest of your layers be a solid color.
And, as always – Don’t overdo it. There can be such a thing as too many layers. Stick to 2-3 items to keep your outfit from looking too busy.
Formal fall layering.
Henleys can also be used as a top layer. (Just ignore the part about this being a selfie.)
Advanced pattern mixing.
Perfect fall color.