Hopsack tweed autumn jackets

The neat jacket: on the face of it, a very simple garment. On closer inspection, though, both the jacket and the cloth it’s made from — stouthearted hopsack tweed sourced from a mill not far outside Manchester — reveal some useful, autumn-improving peculiarities.

Black-brown hopsack tweed jacket, worn with three-stitch lambswool rollneck, and nearly-black narrow cord trousers.

Hopsack is a somewhat unsung member of the tweed family. This one is a slightly coarse, open weave of grey/black and brown yarns, which on closer inspection are themselves multi-toned and flecked throughout with random nuduals of other shades. It’s warm, pliable, and crucially light stuff — very particular to the more-generations-old-than-it’s-polite-to-count Lancashire mill from which it harks. It’s also hardier perhaps than some of the wool and cashmere mixes used in other garments to date.

Just as the hopsack tweed rewards a closer look, the neat jacket itself is on first impressions very simple, but is in fact packed to the gills with things that might come in useful when the wearer is out and about. On the face of it, then: a short jacket with a relaxed, fairly square fit. It has drop shoulders and roomy, accommodating arms — the ends of which are self-faced, so should the wearer wish to roll their sleeves up a couple of times, it’s hopsack tweed they see, not the black cotton lining. The jacket fastens with a fly front. This is a concealed placket with just the top button visible. Its underside is inset, away from the placket, and partitioned so to prevent unsightly in-wind flapping.

The collar of the neat jacket may be worn up or down. When worn down, the collar has a lapel-like appearance.

The jacket has six pockets at last count. On the outside, an “up-and-under” chest pocket, and two in-seam slouch pockets at the waist — hardly visible unless in use. On the interior, meanwhile, there’s a large foolscap (or A4) sized document pocket, which opens from the side for speedy access, and fastens with the help of two horn buttons. Inside that pocket is a concealed key pocket. And, on the opposite side of the interior, there’s a shallow seam-to-seam patch pocket: a handy venue for absent-minded object-dropping.

Slouch pockets are positioned right on the side seams; they’re barely visible when not in use.

The neat jacket comes in two tweeds: grey-brown and black-brown; they’re barely distinguishable from one another — but there’s much to be said for the little details.