The first time we bought an army-style jacket, it was 2009. At the time, I was a student living in London and browsing on the high street was one of the most exciting parts of our weekend activities. Amongst the many selection of British stores as well as global retailers like ZARA, H&M and co., there was a slew of local favorites like Topshop, Ted Baker we couldn’t wait to get our hands on. The mentioned jacket was actually purchased at an Urban Outfitters, the American multinational and multi-brand store.
After mere moments of looking through racks of clothing, home decor, and accessories, my eyes locked eyes with the most versatile jacket to own as a student. Its oversized look, with a multitude of pockets and slightly long cut seemed like the ideal piece of outerwear to throw on over a university look – during the day, as much as at night. The years went by, and whilst the jacket wasn’t worn for a few years at least, I refused to give it away during my quarterly spring and fall cleanings. I knew that this particular jacket in that particular shade, and without any too over-the-top details, would come in handy in the future. Lo and behold, my younger self was right.
Fast-forward to Valentinos’ Cruise & Resort 2014/2015 collection, in which devotees of the Italian fashion house were introduced to embellished butterfly embroidery and patch appliqués. The reinvented military jacket with these gorgeous designs came at a hefty price tag – some priced at over $3k. Luckily for us, we were able to recycle our almost decade old jacket purchased for a mere £45 (still available to shop here) – minus the embellishments but that only left us more room to experiment in the accessories department.
Today, we find ourselves not only wearing this style of jackets all-year round, but because of its oversized look, it makes for an ideal seasonal outerwear piece, easy to layer sweaters and scarves to stave off the cold during Fall, and optimal for warmer days followed by a breezy night in Spring.
To get back to our initial point – we’ve been spotting a particular type of trousers that fall into the same category as the above mentioned military-style jacket: the cargo pants. Often featured as a cropped style, you can get yours as a high-rise or mid-rise fit, in a variety of army neutral colours from light beige to dark khaki and mud brown. Although we’re not against wearing them during Fall/Winter, the cotton and canvas fabric (which this item is made from is usually more convenient for warmer weather) thrown together with a light sweater creates an obvious yet plain sailing Spring look.
Cutting to the chase, we couldn’t be more delighted to see the style making a comeback. We’ve seen a number of distinct fits, some taking us a good walk down memory lane with oversized trousers with huge side pockets. Alternatively, we like the more slim-cut look, easily paired with a button down for the perfect dressed up Spring look (time to pack up the navy and black work uniforms). If you’re not looking for an office look, we like to wear them for a night out with a floral blouse, corset, or striped off the shoulder top.
We’ve rounded up a few of our favorite styles, most of them being cropped, giving you plenty of room south of your ankle to embellish those with some statement pumps or sandals.
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Images: Vogue, Jenna Lyons
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