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Wardrobe Fabrication: Staying Stylish in Inclement Weather

Updated: Jan 25, 2019

Inclement weather is a challenge to every man's style. Unfortunately, for the vast majority of men inclement weather represents such a small period of the year that investing in stylish protective garments can be very hard to justify. Justify it we must, gentlemen!


Whether one lives in Texas, Florida, New York, or Colorado, there will always be a number of days out of the year during which you'd rather not go out, but must. Snow or rain are the most common inclement weather events and also the hardest to remain stylish during. The process for picking pieces to combat each is simple, simply follow the wardrobe fabrication guidelines; tolerancing, dimensioning, factor of safety, and investment.


Tough yet stylish outwear should represent a balance of each of the wardrobe fabrication principles reviewed thus far. By identifying a piece that doesn't represent a vast departure from the quality you've curated in the rest of your wardrobe you are tolerancing correctly. Dimensioning is perhaps the most difficult with technical, yet still stylish outwear. In order to dimension properly you must identify a silhouette that flatters your figure, while either providing enough insulation to keep you warm or having enough waterproof layers between you and the deluge to be functional. When in doubt this is one scenario where dimensions can be slightly compromised in order to maintain comfort, a stylish man is one that dresses for the occasion, even if that occasion requires braving a snow storm.


Factor of safety is one of the most important principles when choosing your new outerwear. How often do you expect to go out in inclement weather? Perhaps you live in New York City, where your commute involves walking. In this instance, a durable winter coat, whether it be an overcoat or parka, that is to be worn everyday during winter merits a high factor of safety. In contrast, if you intend to thwart the occasional light rain storm in California, a garment with significantly lower factor of safety can be selected. This leads right into the final wardrobe fabrication principle, investment. Identifying a high or low factor of safety for your new outwear will undoubtedly represent several hundred dollars difference. A good investment strategy will be to not overspend on an unnecessary factor of safety, while maintaining good dimensions and by extension staying within your wardrobe quality tolerance. Furthermore, buying your chosen garment in an off-season is an excellent way to reap increased value from your investment.


An excellent example of a well dimensioned technical rain jacket from Reiss.

Next time you are selecting technical outwear I invite you to ask me any questions you have via the "contact me" form. I will use several years experience both as an outdoorsman and a gentleman of style to help steer you towards a quality piece.


-The Engineer