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How to style a blazer

Previously always designed to be worn as part of a suit, blazers are now available as standalone garments that can be utilised by men and women for both formal and casual events. You can choose from a number of blazer types, colours and materials. As such, you’re given the option to style your blazer either to match or contrast with other items of clothing and accessories.   

In this blog, we look at a number of styling considerations for wearing a blazer, such as what shoes you can wear with them, whether bow ties would work as another component to your outfit and how you can add a handkerchief to your blazer to complete the look.

What type of shoes to wear with jeans and a blazer

Picking the correct shoes to go with jeans and a blazer is partly based on how smart you want to look. Other factors that play a role in the decision are the colour and style of both the jeans and the blazer.  

For a more casual look, loafers are a solid option, while leather shoes suit smart attire and, if you’re hoping to appear somewhere between the two, suede footwear is suitable for smart casual. In terms of colour, black shoes can work well with black jeans, but if the trousers are a shade of blue, it would be advisable to go for lighter tones such as brown and beige. 

An older man wearing a blazer in a smart casual style.

Can you wear a bow tie with a blazer?

While bow ties are a popular choice for formal wear and tuxedos, they’re also increasingly on trend for smart casual wear. If you’re going for this style, you can wear your blazer and bow tie with a light shirt, chinos and a pair of loafers.   

However, this doesn’t mean that a bow tie isn’t suited to a more formal occasion too. This accessory can add another element of class to an outfit consisting of a smart shirt, formal trousers and dress shoes.

How to put a handkerchief in a blazer

Sometimes informally referred to as a pocket square, a handkerchief can be a perfect finishing touch to any blazer. It adds a splash of colour and finesse to your outfit and it’s easy to accessorise your blazer in this way. All you need to do is fold up a square piece of material and display it in your blazer’s breast pocket.   

There are several ways of presenting your handkerchief, such as:   

One-point pocket squares - shape the handkerchief into a smaller square, fold the square in half then leave one of the long corners sticking out the top of the pocket.   

Two-point pocket squares - fold the handkerchief twice so it forms a small square and lie it onto a flat surface with the corners situated at the top, bottom and both sides in a diamond shape. Position the bottom corner next to the top corner to form an M shape. You then need to fold the left and right points in towards the middle. Finally, place the handkerchief in your pocket, with the straight edge at the bottom and the two points at the top.   

Puff pocket squares - fold the handkerchief in half twice, hold both sides together and pinch it in the middle. Tuck the edges of the handkerchief in your pocket and allow the straight side to stick out the top.     

Reverse puff pocket squares - carry out the same steps as you would for a puff pocket square, but instead of having the puffy part at the top, have it at the bottom and the pinched edges at the top for a more relaxed look.   

Square pocket squares - fold the handkerchief in half twice and place it in the pocket with a couple of centimeters sticking out the top.

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