Fashion Friday: The Denim Jacket

Stephanie says:

For future fashion posts, I’d love to see your write about “how to choose a stylish denim jacket.” I, too, love the idea of a denim jacket, but it’s hard to pick the right kind. Some denim jackets just look way too “80’s.

Did someone say denim?  Ah, one of my favorite topics.  I heart the denim jacket.  I have several that I wear for different purposes.  What I like about the denim jacket is that you can throw it on with anything from khaki slacks to a sundress and it will give you a stylish, put-together look that is perfect for a day at the mall or a night on the town.  I often wear a denim jacket to church with a skirt or pants.  (And a shirt, of course.)  I feel like the denim jacket lends a simple, classic outfit a modern, edgy, yet effortless look.

I have 3 denim jackets, and each was an impulse purchase.  (Yes, I get the impulse to purchase quite often.)  The cool thing about impulse purchases is that they usually end up being awesome wardrobe staples because you aren’t settling for something that isn’t exactly what you want.  When you find JUST the PERFECT thing and you weren’t even looking for said item, but you just HAVE to buy it because it’s THAT perfect…  Well.  It probably IS perfect.  My point is, you may want to wait until the perfect denim jacket finds you, rather than going on a hunting expedition that will leave you frustrated and empty-handed.

I had high hopes of taking photos of myself wearing a variety of outfits with the denim jacket, but my hopes were shattered.  This is the best I could do.  Please pardon the slightly blurry photos (my camera needs a doctor) and the oddly placed black hanger sticking up out of the top of each outfit.  That’s part of my MacGyver-esque contraption to hang the skirts and pants low enough to be seen beneath the shirts and jackets.

Outfit #1 — This is an outfit I’d wear to church or out to dinner.  It’s fine without a jacket, but the denim jacket gives it a bit of an edge.  This is my more casual jacket.  For church I generally wear the one with a darker wash.

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Outfit #2 — This is the darker jacket with bracelet length sleeves.  I often wear this outfit to church in the summer.

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Outfit #3 — This picture no where near does this LBD justice.  I picked it up last week at the Banana Republic outlet.  It’s a cotton twill sleeveless black dress perfect for dressing up or down in the summer months. I threw the more casual black jacket over it for this photo.  Wouldn’t this be darling with red or orange sandals?

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Outfit #4 — This is another outfit I’d wear to church or out to dinner.  I just picked up these pants; I haven’t even worn them yet.

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Finally, I have a white denim jacket.  I love the bronze buttons.  It looks great with my brown cargo capris and a casual T or tank.  I also throw it on with dark blue jeans sometimes.

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So there you go.  Several fine ways to wear a denim jacket.

There IS a knack to finding just the right denim jacket.  The secret is two-fold:  LENGTH and STRUCTURE.  If your jacket is too long or too boxy, you may as well leave it off.

As always, proportion is key.  I prefer my denim jackets to be on the shorter side.  It’s just fine if your shirt extends beneath the hem of the jacket.  In fact, I prefer it this way.

As for structure, make sure to buy a jacket that is shaped through the waist area to give you that curvy, feminine figure we are all striving to achieve or maintain.  A flattering jacket can cover a multitude of sins.  If you carry any extra weight through your midsection (that’s where all my extra weight goes!) a fitted jacket will camouflage that nicely.

One rule of thumb.  Blue jean jackets with blue jeans = NO.  Okay?  Pinky swear.

For more ideas, Wardrobe 911 has a fabulous article on How to Wear: The Jean Jacket.

And when I googled the topic, I came up with How to Wear a Jean Jacket Without Looking Like a Douchebag on stylelist.com  The title cracked me up, so I had to include it.

What’s your favorite way to rock the denim jacket?  If you don’t have one, will you be on the lookout for one now?