Fall is one of my all time favourite seasons. The season rejuvenates our wardrobe by allowing us to incorporate several summer favourites with new, and exciting, pieces. With that said, Fall might be confusing for some as it involves layering and harmonious combinations. This, however, should not be a hinderance. By acquiring ‘essentials’ in neutral colours, layering will never be easier.
I always believe in the concept of acquiring essential pieces to curate a capsule wardrobe. The purpose of a capsule wardrobe is simple, transpose pieces to create multiple cohesive looks without much thought.
Below here are a list of items (personally own – most of them over 2 years) that will improve the depth of your wardrobe. You are likely to own a couple of items from this list already. For the items that you don’t have, I highly recommend buying quality over quantity. Take your time to get to know brands better, pick your favourites (and ones that appropriate for your budget), and then make the purchase. Try to think of each piece as an investment, an investment that will work for you after its purchase.
#1 Entry Raw Denim
This bad boy was my first pair of raw denim. I purchased an entry level as I wasn’t too sure how often I would wear it with a regular dress trouser rotation. To my surprise, I have been wearing it x3 a week over the course of two years and it has only been washed once. Almost all entry level denim are sanforized – meaning it’s already been pre-washed and pre-shrunk. It also has the tendency to fade a little slower than unsanforized denim, allowing the denim to retain a hue that’s very similar to it’s pre-worn state.
I can talk all day long about how every men’s wardrobe can benefit from a topcoat, but I am sure that are already aware of how essential and complementary one is. To match it with ANYTHING in your closet, get one in a neutral colour: navy, brown, charcoal, dark olive or camel.
#3 Belted Shawl Cardigan
A shawl cardigan is a thing of beauty, but a belted shawl cardigan is a thing of beauty from another planet. The belt provides superior waist compression and it’s casual/loungy aspect makes a belted shawl cardigan perfect for weekend getaways, causal Fridays or just to purchase the necessary groceries. Just look for one that is slightly longer than your usual cardigan, has a relatively generous lapel and patch pockets.
#4 Wingtip Boots
A boot every man needs that can seamlessly transition from a casual to formal occasion. If it’s your first, get one in dark brown or burgundy.
#5 Chunky Socks
As the temperatures fall, your regular socks just won’t cut it. You will need something warmer, cozy and chunkier. Perfect to be paired with your boots (pictured above).
Look for one in a neutral colour like a charcoal, light grey or navy. A turtleneck is perfect for layering or worn as a standalone if the weather is warm enough.
#7 Everyday Sweater
A cozy sweater that you can wear daily without much thought. It’s important to pay attention to the composition of the sweater here. This fisherman sweater is made out of 100% merino wool, making it comfortable to wear directly over my skin. However, if the sweater is a nylon blend for example, it might be a little itchy to be worn without an undershirt.
#8 Cashmere Sweater
A sweater in a soft hand feel and texture that is not meant to be worn daily. This sweater will serve as the epitome of comfort and will serve useful for those special occasions.
#9 Brown (Seasonal) Trousers
You already set on the leg wear casual department (the entry level raw denim). But you need a pair of trousers that’s formal, but not too formal. Solution? A brown trouser in a seasonal F/W fabric. The brown hue and fabric (I recommend flannels, tweed or corduroy/moleskin) reveals to others that it isn’t your regular chino/jeans nor is it part of a suit.
No capsule wardrobe is complete without a sports coat. Pick one in a heavier fabric (flannel or tweed) with a slight pattern, such as this glen plaid. For the Fall, I like the base colour of the jacket in a charcoal or brown hue.
Putting it together
These ten basic items can give you multiple outfits and will remain stylish for years to come. Don’t rush to complete the list but rather invest in quality pieces that are sustainable.