Telegraph Men 3 Ways to Wear…Camel
Perhaps it is the greatest conundrum of men’s fashion. The piece that has, on the one hand, connotations of dodgy wheeler-dealers with a penchant for a bit of bling and yet, there is no other piece which, at the same time, can speak more of confidence, sophistication and creativity for those brave enough to wear it. I speak, of course, of the enigmatic camel coat.
If you’re convinced that it will always be the hallmark of the more mature Del Boy type, then think again because season after season recently this 1970s classic has been mounting a determined comeback and this AW it’s truly front and centre where it rightly belongs. Across collection after collection camel is once again the stylish man’s choice. Burberry’s Christopher Bailey has applied the hue to traditional outerwear in sumptuous single- and double-breasted coats, pitching against type by combining them with crew neck jumpers and other contemporary matches. On the runways this season, Balenciaga and Prada too have opted for camel tones as well as shades of cognac and caramel, treating them the same as greys and navys, to create strikingly versatile flair, with a timeless, classic chord. And its not just camel coats. Elsewhere tonal camel/biege ensembles feature in bombers, rugged country-coats and even camel suiting. Check out Topman, Jaeger, M&S and Sandro for some inspiration.
Key to avoiding any associations with members of the Trotter family are the new rules i.e. cleaner lines, sharper cuts and go for garments that have all of the 1970s-style weight lifted out of their construction. Camel jackets are a great way to channel the look if you don’t feel confident in a knee-length coat. If you do go for an overcoat, then just remember it’s a statement piece that certainly doesn’t need to be shackled with suits or formal wear. Colour-block skinny jeans, polos, T-shirts, slim-cut wool trousers and pumped-up trainers will bring a new season air to this modern classic.
If teaming camel with formal-wear, then think brogues, loafers or suede shoes, with bold patterned socks (or none at all) to amp up the style factor. Alternatively, opt for a crisp white shirt, a loose black tie and sharp black jeans and you’ll be as cool as a desert camel this season. Which is pretty damned hot!
For the first look, I’ve taken a clean cut wool overcoat (£600, LouisCopeland.com) and styled it casually with a crisp white sweater and texture tripped with a chunky scarf in this season’s berry tones.
Camel suiting was big earlier this year but the arrival of winter doesn’t mean it should be banished to the recesses of your wardrobe. I’ve layered this Sandro suit with a colour pop gilet from Tommy Hilfiger to bring a whole new dimension to your look.
A camel sweater (£25.99, Zara) is the perfect basic and a welcome alternative to black. Play with layers and texture to keep interest. I wore mine with a brown/blue check shirt and my trusty denim jacket.