brown leno in action
This is a fantastic question, Chase. For a lot of guys, the second blazer after a navy blazer is... another navy blazer. But seriously, if navy is the extent of your tailored collection, that next step can be a bit daunting. What pattern do I choose? What about new colors? Or fabrics? Or wait... seasonal fabrics? It's a whole new world to explore! So I'm gonna give you a super simple two-step formula for how to evolve your jacket selection after your navy blazer that, I hope, is easy to follow. (Think of this as the "crawl" phase in crawl-walk-run progression.)
Step 1. Get a sport jacket in a neutral, solid color that reflects nature but isn't blue or gray.
You guys have seen me wear a green blazer and extol the virtues of it too many times to count in this column and on our Instagram. Goes with just about everything, not as expected as navy, is a bit unexpected, and you'll be the only guy at the party wearing one. (Just don't show up to a certain golf club in it.) One quick glance at our Sport Jacket page you'll see lots of green, actually. We just released a spring-y Juniper Wool/Linen Hopsack and that's already been a bestseller of the season (and 100% worth grabbing if it's in your size). And we are in our last run of a Sid Forever Favorite - the Spruce Green Leno Weave (ditto previous advice). And we've got a beautiful tone-on-tone Spruce Seersucker that will be perfect after Easter for those who are jonesin' for warm weather... or want to get ahead of Derby Day.
But let me throw another one out there that I would say could be just as easy to start with, no matter the season:
A brown sport coat. Our Virgil No. 2 in Leno Weave is one of our tried and true blazers in a one-of-a-kind fabric. And this chocolatey shade (just like his brother in green) is quiet... kinda unexpected... versatile... interesting... and can be dressed up with trousers , or down with 5-pockets. And think of all the shirts you can wear with it! Solids in soft pinks and blues and white, university or Bengal stripes, graph checks, awning stripes, power stripes, chambray... brighter sport shirts like a green plaid or watermelon... and polos! How could I forget. Literally a polo in any shade would be dynamite under a leno jacket. There might not be a better second blazer for someone who hasn't ventured into colors and patterns than this one. And it will last you for years. And just like Green Leno , this is the last of this fabric for awhile. Stay tuned.
brown and green jackets in the wild
Once you've got your second blazer in a quiet, neutral tone, step 2: introduce a subtle pattern.
With patterns, it's a bit like going to the next grade level, a little intimidating at first, but once you get there you love it. It doesn't have to be complicated. To get started, I'm looking for something on the quieter side. If you only have one, you don't want a jacket so out-there that it can only go with one outfit, or that makes people remember you as "that guy with that crazy jacket." And like the neutral solid, we want it to be a "pant eater" - aka versatile enough to go with almost any color of trouser.
We just released a handful of new spring blazers, but I don't think there is a better pattern to get started than this checked hopsack. Our head of men’s design said it's his favorite swatch of the season, and it might be mine, too. At first glance you might go "wow, that's a LOT of jacket" but look closely... the colors are actually really soft, and much easier to wear than one would think. You'll see shades of stone and chocolate, forest green and dusty blue. Which, right there, gives you four colors it will go beautifully with. A pair of dark jeans, a pair of dark grey trousers , a pair of white 5-pockets ... sky's the limit. The fabric comes from Scotland and it has equal parts silk and linen, so it's perfect for tomorrow and can take you into early fall depending on where you live. Start with solid-colored pants and shirt (again, a polo is a layup), and hit the gas pedal.
checked jackets in the wild
So I hope this helps. I think you'll really enjoy adding new jackets and the seasons to wear them in. Makes checking the weather a lot more purposeful. So until then, have fun, and go get your pant-eater on.