Help me buy a jacket
February 1, 2014 5:31 PM   Subscribe

I want to buy a jacket for vaguely chilly Southern California nights... for $100.

I want a jacket that can keep me warm when it hits 50 but isn't bulky. Stylish but not flashy. All-purpose... something you can wear over a t-shirt, casual collared shirt, or a dressy shirt, and that you can wear out to a bar, to a friend's party, to the grocery store, on the way home from work. I'm slim (6ft0, 155), male, 26, usually pretty boring (to be frank) when it comes to clothing choices. (For example, I've never had a leather jacket. Is that what I should be getting here?)

And hopefully it won't break the bank. Thoughts?
posted by lewedswiver to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (8 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
For weather in the 50s, I typically wear one of three things:

- A hoodie. Very casual, but it gets the job done. Pairing a hoodie with a collared shirt is a little classier than the usual t-shirt, and will probably keep you warmer. I don't know that I'd wear a hoodie with a more business-formal shirt, though -- with a button down we're talking about oxford, chambray, flannel, something like that.

- Sweaters. Pull over or cardigan, whatever suits you better. Shawl-neck cardigans are really in for men right now.

- Blazer. This is another one where you're not looking for the formality of a suit jacket, but want something a step up. Works great with anything from a t-shirt to a collared button-down.
posted by Sara C. at 5:56 PM on February 1, 2014

The Harrington is the classic boring but cool mild weather jacket. It comes in various colors and levels of expensiveness. The Merc one is slim cut and usually can be found for about $100.

Merc Harrington on Ebay
posted by BabeTheBlueOX at 5:58 PM on February 1, 2014

I bought a nice, ~$100 Kenneth Cole leather motorcycle jacket with zip-out lining when I lived in Ventura. It has served me well.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 5:58 PM on February 1, 2014

Light jackets you might look at:

Levi's Hooded Commuter has been popular for a bit. ($128, but you can get it cheaper on places like the Clymb).
Levi's regular commuter trucker jacket is actual denim, so YMMV on that one. I have one, I like it. (Clearance, $50).
Barbour type waxed cotton field jackets are popular, though the actual Barbours are expensive. Here's a cheap version ($55).
If you like field jackets, there are a bunch: LL Bean ($119), for example.
Baseball jackets ($128) and MA-1 style flight jackets ($89) maybe?
How would you feel about a peacoat?
posted by Comrade_robot at 6:22 PM on February 1, 2014 [1 favorite]

The Kuhl Burr is very comfortable and light. You can usually find it for $100.
posted by Combustible Edison Lighthouse at 6:40 PM on February 1, 2014 [1 favorite]

I like a down vest. I have a super light one that rolls up into its own little pack and fits in my satchel. Works over a tee or whatever.
posted by Iteki at 9:46 PM on February 1, 2014

I am not a dude but regularly get mistaken for one. I own a black Quiksilver jacket which I thought was the Billy jacket for just the situations you are describing, but the one at that link shows an extra patch low down on the one side which makes it look more casual to me. The one I have (which is a couple years old) looks closer to this one they call Billy 2. Both are under $100.
posted by sigmagalator at 1:03 AM on February 2, 2014 [1 favorite]

Merino sweater.
posted by oceanjesse at 5:05 PM on February 2, 2014

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