Following on from our pockets post last week, we would like to look at another option that "maketh the suit", vents.
When talking about jackets, a vent is a vertical opening at the base of the jacket normally to just above the seat area. Originally created for horseback riding their purpose remaining largely unchanged, to give ease of movement and retain the lines of jacket when sitting and moving.
With a little less variety than pockets there are 3 options to choose from, none, one & two, each with some benefits. We will start with Vanguard's favourite, two vents.
Two vents - AKA side vents/double vents
This style is also suitable for nearly all body shapes. Men who have a slightly stooped posture, a curved lower back or a prominent seat will find jackets with one vent do not hang so well.
One vent - AKA single/centre vent
This option is traditionally part of the American cut. It’s somewhat of a compromise between two vents and none, offering some freedom of movement when sitting. As mentioned above it’s not suitable for all body shapes.
Traditionally this was the Italian cut. For everyday work suits we do not advise this option as the wearer can find movement restrictive. Also when sitting unless you completely take off your jacket you will find the back seat area can become crushed. That said there are a few occasions when no vents are advisable.
When creating a bespoke jacket there are near countless options & combinations of these options to choose from. One of the most important ones to completing the look is choosing the right pocket style. A few things need to be taken into consideration such as fabric, the cut, the lapel design, end use of the suit, the wearer's body shape & personal style can all factor. To an untrained eye it can be simple to go for the safest option, in the hands of one of our experts we can guide you through this process seamlessly.
Here will run through 6 main pocket styles and give some insight into what they can offer your look.
1. Patch pockets
Vanguard offers a few different styles with patch pockets, from the clean plain patch to the box pleated and flapped.
Patch pockets give a more casual feel to a jacket and thus they work particularly well on a casual/weekend piece in tweed, linen, cotton & seersucker. They look really great on bold over-check jacketing fabrics but will take the overall look into the casual realm.
2. Slanted pockets
These used to sit in the more casual styling of a lounge suit but times have changed!
We like a slanted pocket in combination with a peaked lapel &/or a 1 button jacket as it creates flattering lines on the body. On stripes these look great but we normally advise against them on check fabrics as it goes against the square pattern of the cloth. We also make an extreme slant on the pocket for the more adventurous patron!
3. Straight flapped pockets
This is the traditional business suit pocket, it looks clean, totally functional, you can’t really go wrong. Along with all styles of flapped pockets the flaps can be tucked in to look like a flapless jetted pocket for a cleaner look. We prefer these on checked cloths as it follows the lines of the fabric & double breasted to follow the alignment of the buttons.
4. Jetted pockets
These are essentially the same as the flapped pocket just minus the flaps. As a flapped pocket gives you the option to tuck in or tuck out your flap (thus creating 2 different looks) we prefer to always go with flaps except in a few circumstances.
It is still uncouth to have a flapped pocket on dressier jackets such as tuxedos and morning jackets. When choosing a more modern style with piped edges and contrast detailing (such as our patron in the photo above) this cleaner pocket can emphasize those details.
5. Ticket pockets
We love ticket pockets. Do read our separate blog all about the humble ticket pocket and it’s history. We feel this gives a jacket a slight dandy & bespoke touch. Originally for tickets (hence the name) we find it very handy for business cards.
This works well on larger frames who chose plain fabrics, as it helps to break up a large expanse of one colour. A ticket pocket can (and we feel should!) be added to patch, slanted, flapped and jetted pockets.
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