I am thrilled to know this new series, where I help a reader solve a wardrobe problem,  is resonating.   I am also thrilled that I got another submission from a reader named A.A..

 Different Ways to Wear this Jacket

A.A. told me this reversible upholstery style jacket holds sentimental value.  Yet, despite how much A.A. loves it, she told me she struggles with how to wear it beyond wearing it for dressier occasions with black pants.  She wants different ways to wear this sentimental piece in a more casual manner.

My Suggestions

Not being able to clearly see the reverse side of this jacket, which A.A. described to me as black and purple, I am going to make outfit suggestions using the side we can all see.  Besides, given the excitement of this side, I can’t imagine anyone wanting to hide it.

Where A.A. sees this jacket as limited to black, I see this jacket as full of different opportunities given all the colors in it.  A.A. has many different ways she could wear it.

I decided to make the black in this jacket a background player and you will see when I do that how the black becomes less prominent and the other colors get to shine.

Option #1- Work with the Purple

 In this look, I decided to work with the purple and very visible cognac shade in the jacket.   These two colors are way more prominent than the black and they work well together.  Plus, cognac and black is a nice combination.  I styled this basic plum-colored cashmere sweater from Bloomingdales with a pair of slim jeans.  Given the shape and proportion of this jacket, keeping the pants slim will create better body balance.  I finished the look with a pair of casual cognac waterproof booties from Blondo and a simple cognac bag from Everlane.  If A.A. wanted to, she could easily swap out the jeans for black pants and keep everything else the same.


Option #2- Warm Grey and Burgundy

I studied this jacket intensely.  I zoomed in super close because I could see a color I couldn’t quite put my finger on.  It’s subtle and hard to capture but it is almost like a warm grey, olivey, taupey brown shade that runs along the left side of the jacket near the buttons.  I spent a ridiculous amount of time looking for a top in a color that came close to matching it.  I found this top from Lou & Grey that comes close.  I wish it were a different style as I would imagine those sleeves would be tricky to fit under this jacket, but capturing the color, in this case, was more of a priority for me.  I don’t want to send A.A. on a mad goose chase trying to find the perfect top that matches this jacket and works for the style.  I think if she found something in a warm grey, a color that often reads as a muddy olive, she would be just fine.

When pairing a color like in this top, you can see how it not only picks up that subtle color but there is a decent amount of red in this warm grey shade that it blends well with the other red shades.  This is another way harmony is really achieved with the plum shades and also why it harmonizes so well with the burgundy jeans from Talbots.  Were A.A. to remove the jacket the outfit still works well.  I finished the look with a burgundy knotted necklace, a casual burgundy bag from Herschel Supply Co., and olive boots from Franco Sarto.  If A.A. wanted to wear black pants, she could keep everything in this outfit the same and swap out the burgundy jeans with a black pair of pants.

A.A. told me she prefers to not wear heels, but I am suggesting this pair because they have a comfortable heel and sole and also adds height to this look which plays well with the proportions of the jacket.


Option #3- Work with the Cognac

I considered myself done with this post and it was nagging at me that I didn’t create a solution using more cognac.  After all, it is so hard to miss it in this jacket.  So I threw this last one together using this pair of cognac cords from Kut from the Kloth and a basic ivory sweater from Leith.  I added this scarf from Chan Luu for a pop and finished the look further with the same Blondo cognac booties and burgundy bag from Herschel Supply Co. from the previous looks.  If A.A. didn’t want to use a scarf, she could use the same necklace as in the last look.  Seeing how open the neckline of the jacket is, I liked filling in the neckline with a drapey scarf.  And as with the other looks, A.A. could totally wear this outfit with black pants instead.

I hope these suggestions helped inspire you with your own current wardrobe quandaries and I very much appreciate A.A. sharing this jacket with me to solve.  If you have an outfit fix I hope to hear from you.

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