Layering Etiquette: The Jean Jacket General Style 70 Comments

Joshua Kissi: There’s no incorrect direction in approaching the etiquette of layering, especially when it serves a practical function like shielding you from the frigid weather. The trick to mastering the art of layering is to consider color, cut, and silhouettes that look keen to the eye. There is a natural progression with layering. The thinnest garments should be closest to your body with the thicker pieces being layered over those.

This is the first in a series of posts that will focus on particular garments best suited for layering, whether it’s in cold or warm weather. Someone who understands the art of layering to a T is our Black Ivy colleague and fellow blogger Kjohnlasoul.

One of these pieces is the all-American favorite jean jacket. The jean jacket was a staple among the early working class, in part, because the highly durable fabric allowed frequent wear. There’s a broad spectrum of possibilities to consider when discussing the jean jacket because of the numerous cuts, color palettes, and brands to take into account. When you think of jean jackets, Levi’s and Lee immediately come to mind.

Fit Description: Some of the items we wear and posts seem like diamond-in-the-rough finds, but Levi’s jean jackets are readily accessible, whether they’re new or vintage. The jacket lends itself to many layering possibilities, with my favorite being worn under a blazer.

I came across this sensational Carhartt jacket in one of my favorite thrift stores. The corduroy shoulders and collar were everything I needed. The jacket also has a detachable quilt blanket lining, which provides great warmth. Speaking of warmth, these marled camp socks provide the perfect balance of durability and comfort in inclement weather such as the blizzard that just hit us. I would recommend investing in a pair to fight off frostbitten extremities.

Whether layered or not the denim jacket will remain a classic piece you can have the ability fit into your wardrobe every season.

“Denim jackets were originally created for the workplace; they were a part of the overall denim outfit that was rugged and durable, helping to keep parts of the body safe” – Todd Burton

All recent ph by Rog Walker

Have something to say?


  • james

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    Great post!. I’ve been layering with my jean jacket this winter as well and it provides great warmth and its not uncomfortable to do under a jacket or sweater when layering

  • Cassie

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    Awesome post! Even though I’m a lady I still took notes ;-)

  • willy cheesesteak

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    That vintage Carhartt jacket is beautiful, Josh. Well done.

  • Xenobia Bailey

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    I love everything about the style and function of this very SMART look … But,.. Where are the gloves?… Those beautiful hands need to be covered and protected in all this cold weather.

    Other than the missing gloves,… PERFECT!!


  • Aaron

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    awesome socks man!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Makyra P.

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    I dont know why im up, but you know i get happy when i see the update tweet on twitter so decided to check out the new post.
    I like ofcourse, the jean jacket is a versatile piece for the spring/fall & winter. Firgured a layering piece was coming soon.

    N i love the sock mayn lol…the orange in them pops!

  • joseph a

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    very nice, i see S.E. hasn’t slowed down

    i btw, are those camp socks just for show, or are they really built for the cold?

  • Dennis Renaissance

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    Those accessories are nice! Great topic, I look forward to the subsequent posts.

  • niamh

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    Great post, as always!
    The layering looks brilliant, I really like the combination of buttons, very well considered.

  • Doneiver

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    Fellas, what’s up with shooting in Fleetwood? Does one of your photographers live around the way? do you all? that’s my block, just think it’s funny that it’s been showing up in recent posts.

  • Charlie.S

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    Vraiment ouf ce style, J’adore!!

  • jen smith

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    I love a good jean jacket. I own tons….they are such a versatile piece in your wardrobe… the post.


  • Mr. Sartorial

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    Great post!

    I love a good denim jacket, and while Levi’s and Lee are definitely the best for vintage I’ve also found The Gap has a pretty good fit and wash if you’re looking for brand new one.

    I also really dig the socks and boots. They look too cool to be Florsheim!

    Keep up the good work!

    - Mr. S

  • Troy

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    I just want to kill for those shoes/boots. And remember the article you did on the Lee jacket no so far back…Ahh the memories of good, good jackets. But back to the jacket in question do you think the denim jacket in its first stage of dark denim is still relevant or are the lighter or khaki colours more versatile. Anyhoo. Excellent blog as usual. I’ll stay in touch.

  • Poetri

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    Very vintage. Carhartt makes the best workwear. The color of the jean jacket is not conventional, but it’s very creative and a great interpretation of the jacket. It’s very hard to make workwear look fashionable, but you pulled it off, my brother.

  • Troy

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    Oh by the way, Old Navy had those exact same socks I got them back in October of course by now they’re sold out there..

  • Kellen

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    Nice post. That Carhart is amazing.

  • Troy

        posted on December 30 , 2010 : has a similar sock but not quite ‘it’ the stripe is just one band at top, oh well…

  • Gina American

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    Perfect in every way!

  • K.Mack

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    Layering is the thing I love most about the cold weather and living here in NYC…it’s like a playground for finding the best layering pieces.

    I’m digging the jean jacket as a layering piece…bc if I see one more person rocking a jean suit….0_0

    Those chuks go hard J.

    Well done.

  • shay

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    Nice post, Josh. Info on that vintage store you talked about?

  • TheBlueEyedBoy

        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    Nice look, I love the accessories so much : bracelets and socks !


        posted on December 30 , 2010 :

    Love the outfit!! Nice way to keep warm during this blizzard.

  • Allen

        posted on December 31 , 2010 :

    Definitely another good post, glad December’s gotten so many of them lol The Carhartt and Levis jacket are dope. Now I want to get a jean jacket even more haha

  • TAC

        posted on December 31 , 2010 :

    Funny! I just went out and bought a Gap denim jacket, on sale $30 :D . Thanks for the tips, love the jacket even more.

  • WhyStyleMatters

        posted on December 31 , 2010 :

    Great post but I really like the photography. Seems like you used different angles and perspectives which gave some photos a 3d look. What camera did they use?

  • JO'

        posted on December 31 , 2010 :

    love the socks roll!

  • Les Frères JO'

        posted on December 31 , 2010 :

    Nice Shoes ! hyped
    if you want french men street looks :

  • SammyFresh

        posted on December 31 , 2010 :

    Dope shoes yo….

  • r

        posted on December 31 , 2010 :


  • Anonymous

        posted on December 31 , 2010 :

    Seriously, Where can I get those shoes..? Florsheim does not have them on their site. They are hype!

  • LOLA

        posted on January 1 , 2011 :

    Most definitely loving the socks and wingtip combo. The denim jacket is always my fave go-to piece for those sort of “unprepared” days haha. I tend to go after mens denim jackets also because the fit just feels more comfortable

    ps: I havent communicated with you guys on here in forever (excluding twitter lol), So proud all of the progress and such. You guys deserve it so much :)

    -LOLA <3

  • Christian

        posted on January 1 , 2011 :

    Chaps, I always hated the jean jacket, but i think you have completely changed by view. Best Wishes, Christian

  • Micah

        posted on January 2 , 2011 :

    The layering is really well done! The denim contrasts well with the khaki which makes everything pop. You were talking about one of your favorite thrift stores – what thrift stores are your favorite/ recommend?

  • bj

        posted on January 2 , 2011 :

    great post, new to the site but i have been on it for hours. i see we similarly went from cargo shorts and stussy/supreme in 08 into 2011 with a much more mature look. keep up the posts

  • Melissa Frankwitz

        posted on January 2 , 2011 :

    handsome stuff! ..

  • OG

        posted on January 2 , 2011 :

    Perfect piece of work!! I have always had reservations on how to pull off a Jean jacket but layering is the perfect solution.!! Fit is another important element to keep in mind.

  • tony

        posted on January 2 , 2011 :

    love the post, pulled off very well…one question though, do you tailor your urban slim fit chino’s?..they seem to fit slimmer than usual like a skinny fit

  • Aaron Christian

        posted on January 3 , 2011 :

    Love the snow in the shoot. Had that over here in London too. Made for some great shoots!

  • SnowBlack

        posted on January 4 , 2011 :

    Layering is something I am learning bit by bit this winter. I can’t imagine with the snow in NYC you are not tempted to just put on one big jacket. I love the socks tucked over the pants and still looking good.

  • Rachel

        posted on January 4 , 2011 :

    What I like most about this and layering in colder months is all of the texture. This is really what makes a look to me.

    You’ve got denim, cord, suede, cotton, wool, leather. It’s all there and it all plays beautifully together as the light hits each fiber differently.

    Great look.

  • Courtney Chenard

        posted on January 4 , 2011 :

    The Carhartt Jacket is amazing….. I would have def. picked that up if I saw it!!! Good layering J. Kissi!!!

  • jim

        posted on January 5 , 2011 :

    Same question for the chinos; Do you tailor the j crew urban slims or buy them smaller? I was thinking of getting the bowerys in urban slim for a casual work environment but on you, they look too slim for work. Thanks.

  • Joshua aka 'JAIDEN'

        posted on January 6 , 2011 :

    This is a great post, like a breath of fresh air in sensible styling. I like it. Check out my new fashion blog:

  • Joe

        posted on January 6 , 2011 :

    yo, did yalll shoot this in mt. vernon by fleetwood ave?

  • Lovay

        posted on January 6 , 2011 :

    That is some fly steez! Thanks for mentioning Kadeems blog btw, he really knows how to dress! But don’t worry, you guys are still my favs ;)

  • Jeff Toliver ( | Urbane.Male.Life.Style)

        posted on January 6 , 2011 :

    What’s good Josh…how you been man? All I can say is that those Florsheim wingtip chukka’s are crazy…love em!! The BKc cap was the perfect addition the whole ensemble. We had to feature this on the site brotha

  • Abena Anima

        posted on January 7 , 2011 :

    I love this look, Josh. details like the chunky sock was brilliant. Stop by my blog and show some love.

  • The Baker

        posted on January 7 , 2011 :

    Great tips for guys and girls! You guys always look great and give great advice–thanks

  • JK

        posted on January 8 , 2011 :

    @james: Hey james, thanks for the kind words , and you’re righ it does serve great warmth.

    @Cassie: Hey I believe it’s interchangeable when it comes to menswear/womenswear for the most part whether silos/patterns something to take away from the majority of stand points.

    @willy cheesesteak: Thanks Will! one of my favs for sure

    @Xenobia Bailey: Thank you very much , the gloves it was one of those days where snow was on the ground but the weather was pretty tolerable and sun outside – they’re just pictures with snow on the ground so I see where you would think to yourself “where the heck are the gloves?” lol you’ll see more gloves this season for sure.

    @Aaron: Thanks a lot , warm too !

  • JK

        posted on January 8 , 2011 :

    @Makyra P.: Thanks a lot , and yup thats the great thing about jean jacket its a perfect spring piece or any other season maybe except Summer depending how cold it gets late night.

    @joseph a: Thanks , they’re really built for the cold the way they’re produced they use heavy marled cotton to provide warmth for your feet. It does the job.

    @Dennis Renaissance: Thank you sir and surely!

    @niamh: Thank you sir, interesting thing is I didn’t even notice the combination of buttons until I came back home to look at the pictures.

    @Doneiver: We all live uptown whether our families or us we’re pretty familiar with the area and try to keep the scenery changing from time to time. Since it had snowed we liked the effect of the stairs+snow . I don’t particularly live in fleetwood, but we’re sometimes in the area. It is funny you live in the area might run into us one of these days lol.

  • JK

        posted on January 8 , 2011 :

    @Charlie.S: Merci!

    @jen smith: *nod of approval* it’s always grea tto have a variety whether dark indigo to faded denim.

    @Mr. Sartorial: I hear you on that my brother, GAP does produce some acceptable jean jackets, I have come across some really nice ones in vintage racks but for the most part as far as avail levis is probably the best option to side with and all .

    Shoes are probably fav purchase during this season – lol florsheim vintage catalogue is pretty nice.
    @Troy: I would say its more personal preference for the actual shade of the jacket. In colder months I would opt with the darker one and when it warms up the lighter shade, but yes I do remember the lee post Travis did last year *memories*

    figures they’re sold out right now – lol same with J.Crew but hopefully people can find some on Cabelas.

    @Poetri: Thanks sir, Carhartt does great functional pieces I would agree with you but with the way things are going now workwear is deemed fashionable/stylish maybe not considered to the roots of the whole movement because they were wearing it for function but now today sounds a different horn.

  • JK

        posted on January 8 , 2011 :

    @Kellen: Thank you!
    @Gina American: Merci
    @K.Mack: As terrible as the Canadian tuxedo sounds I have seen people pull it off , denim on denim with the same shade may be difficult and unflattering to some’s eyes but its possible lol.

    @shay: Email please , lol .

    @TheBlueEyedBoy: Thank you sir, details bring things together

  • JK

        posted on January 8 , 2011 : Thank you , and yes that blizzard was something else I don’t think NYC was properly prepared to equip with the amount of snow we received lol.
    @Allen: Thanks s ir, just hit up eBay my friend should find something rare also , i know most people are weary about buying off of the internet but just check measurements and should be alright.

    @TAC: nice! if you’re in a cold climate be sure to layer that baby up.

    @WhyStyleMatters: Thank you sir , Rog Walker uses a canon camera I don’t know the specifics but I’ll ask him or you can on his site –

    @JO’: Thanks a lot sir -its a detail some people wouldnt agree with but I’m glad you relate , try it out yourself.

  • JK

        posted on January 8 , 2011 :

    @Les Frères JO’: Thanks you.

    @SammyFresh: Seems like a piece everyone seemed to like and gravitate towards – they’re definitely a nice twist on a classic style – def what we’re about.
    @Anonymous: Hey, call the NYC Florshiem and phone order it should be there located on Mercer St.

    @LOLA: It’s ok we know you like to communicate with us on every post and we love the suppor you have been showing us this whole time really, thank you!

    @Christian: Hey Christian , if so think I accomplished what I set out to do which is just open up people’s minds to different things. It doesn’t hurt to try you know.

  • itzbg2u

        posted on January 9 , 2011 :

    i want those shoes!!

  • lifeofkings

        posted on January 10 , 2011 :

    The wingtips are crazy- like the way you put it together. nice job.
    Like music check me out

  • jessie

        posted on January 11 , 2011 :

    i LOOOVE your style… just now pouring over lots of your older posts. found you by way of vanessa jackman’s blog.

    also, i have to say i am wearing those very socks right now (stole them from my husband, but just thought it was funny).

  • nadj

        posted on January 11 , 2011 :

    Very much enjoy seeing what you guys have been doing…always a good reference when trying to think about style and the application of good really have something

  • los

        posted on January 14 , 2011 :

    nice fit, loving the wingtips…@tony and @jim theres no doubt those urban slim chinos where altered, jcrew doesn’t make their clothes that slim..i think they would definitely be appropriate for work.

  • Abel

        posted on January 14 , 2011 :

    Love the J.Crew Camp socks over the pant!

  • guzmanvergara

        posted on January 16 , 2011 :

    Great Post Josh…any info on the green leather bracelet…it’s great!

  • Primitive Eyes

        posted on January 16 , 2011 :

    Not sure about the socks, but love the rest of the outfit

  • Daniel Krieger

        posted on January 27 , 2011 :

    Great stuff man.. the photos are looking very good!

  • Au Courant Distilled

        posted on February 3 , 2011 :

    I HATE winter. HATE IT – give me the blazing hot summer temps year round and I’ll be happy! LOL – but the styling in this piece, the location, and the layered jackets are perfect; this is inspiring me to dress up more for the rest of the winter!

    Blessings, guys!

  • Yohannes Haile

        posted on March 6 , 2011 :

    wow this post is really great you guys have a really refined style its great
    btw is that morgan freeman lol

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        posted on May 17 , 2011 :

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  • Dave

        posted on January 17 , 2012 :

    Great post! Loving that Carhartt jacket. What’s the fit on it? Safe to usually lean towards smaller sizes with workgear?

  • pat

        posted on March 11 , 2012 :

    That Carhartt jacket is a real find. Outstanding. Well-played, sir!

  • Anonymous

        posted on April 20 , 2012 :

    This is timeless…I dig it.