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Are Sweater Polos (Knit Polos) Timeless, Or Just A Trend?

Are Sweater Polos (Knit Polos) Timeless, Or Just A Trend?


Knitted polos or sweater polos have seen a resurgence in recent times, however within the 30s and 40s, they have been extremely fashionable earlier than they fell out of favor. So, are they actually timeless or simply one other development that may wax and wane?

If you happen to’re something like us right here on the Gentleman’s Gazette, you’re protecting updated on all the most recent menswear developments. In any case, there’s a distinction between basic fashion and classic fashion, and also you would possibly discover an merchandise that’s in its very infancy of changing into a basic fashion piece.

Current years have seen hovering curiosity in sporting a sweater or knit polo shirts, they usually’re typically paired with different fashionable objects, corresponding to gurkhas. We’ve already positioned our stamp on whether or not gurkhas are timeless or a development. And if you wish to study extra about it, you possibly can examine that out in our different information.

Are Gurkha Trousers & Shorts Timeless, or Only a Development?

At the moment, although, we’re going to have a look at the highest half of 1’s outfit and have a look at the polo shirt or polo sweater, and ask if it’s a timeless piece or only a development. However earlier than we are able to reply that query, we’ve to put down its definition.

What Is a Knit Polo?

The knitted polo is a garment that is knitted together and may or may not have a complete opening in the front or just a pop-over style.
The knitted polo is a garment that’s knitted collectively and will or might not have an entire opening within the entrance or only a pop-over fashion. [Image Credit: H&M, GQ]

Considerably unsurprisingly, the sweater or the knitted polo is a garment that’s knitted along with supplies you’d usually discover in a sweater however with a polo-type collar. So, this implies it’ll have a brief physique, usually quick sleeves, though it might have lengthy, and a collar. This makes it look totally different from a knitted T-shirt. They might or might not have an entire opening within the entrance or only a pop-over fashion.

So, for the sake of this information, we’re going to discuss with all of those as knitted polos. The factor that differentiates a knitted polo from an everyday polo is the shortage of cotton. The principle attribute is that they’re usually fabricated from supplies that you’d discover in a conventional sweater, issues like Merino wool or cashmere.

Merino Wool

What Is a Knit Polo?

Merino Wool

Merino wool really possesses naturally stretchy, light-weight properties and is nice at regulating temperature.

Furthermore, cotton could possibly be seen as a mix in these shirts however is often not the principle materials, and at this level, you is likely to be questioning, why is wool used? I imply, in any case, it’s scratchy; it’s uncomfortable, like why would you do this? And whereas that is likely to be the case for lambswool, Merino wool really possesses naturally stretchy, light-weight properties and is nice at regulating temperature. That is why, for instance, some individuals swear by Merino wool socks.

You recognize that right here at GG, we’re all in regards to the consolation of our cotton socks, however Merino wool is unbeaten with regards to issues like polos or sweaters. Silk may be very comparable by way of temperature regulation, but it surely isn’t as stretchy or as elastic as wool is. Subsequently, you generally see these two as a mix; Merino and silk. This manner, you get the stability between luxurious and practicality. Silk manufacturing can really be fairly fascinating, and you may study extra about that in a separate put up.

Why Is Silk So Costly in Clothes & Equipment?

We thought it was crucial to make this clear that there’s a distinction between this and one other sort of polo that’s been extremely popular, which is the toweling or terry material polo. These polos are usually produced from a chunkier toweling material. Therefore, the title terry material polo, and though they aren’t technically knitted, they give the impression of being and are made in a really comparable method to the knitted polo shirt.

Historical past of Knitted Polos

If you happen to’re an everyday reader, you’ll know that a number of years in the past, we did a evaluate and seemed on the historical past of the Lacoste polo shirt, and for those who haven’t seen our sincere evaluate, we’d extremely advocate it, as Raphael does a deep dive into how the polo shirt got here to be.

Pique Cotton
Pique Cotton. [Image Credit: The Fabric of Our Lives]

Since we have to have a bit little bit of historical past on this information, and we don’t need you leaping backwards and forwards between posts, I’ll provide you with a spoiler and say that polo shirts started to exist within the Nineteen Twenties and 30s. Nonetheless, these polo shirts have been produced from pique cotton. This specific weave of cotton allowed for extra flexibility and breathability, which is ideal for taking part in sports activities in.

So, as the recognition of the polo shirt started to rise, individuals started to experiment with making them in numerous supplies. The place pique is a fancy weave to fabricate, in an effort to give cotton elasticity, sure sorts of wool have been already prized for his or her pure stretchiness. They are often knitted in a a lot less complicated flat sew, making them faster and simpler to provide.

Subsequently, knitted polo shirts actually gained in reputation within the 30s and 40s, as individuals started to put on them away from the tennis courts. They have been additionally particularly current within the illustrations by well-known menswear artist Lawrence Fellows. And, as soon as once more, the curiosity in knitted polos continues to rise.

Menswear Professional Evaluations “The Proficient Mr. Ripley”

Within the Fifties, the knitted polo shirts reputation simply continued to soar, and you may see this performed out on the silver display in The Proficient Mr. Ripley. We did a “Menswear Professional Reacts” to this transfer, which can be of curiosity to you as properly.

Jude Law wearing a knitted polo shirt in the movie The Talented Mr. Ripley.
Jude Regulation sporting a knitted polo shirt within the film The Proficient Mr. Ripley. [Image Credits: Paramount Pictures]

Regardless that the movie was made in 1999, the costume division put loads of effort into what was worn, which you’ll be able to see by taking a look at different motion pictures that got here out within the Fifties and 60s, like 1963’s Any Quantity Can Win. That is additionally when the Aloha Fridays development started to occur, which was the precursor to Informal Fridays. That is additionally a possible motive why society clothes way more casually these days. Incorporating knit polos into their very own outfits enable individuals to chill out, not solely on the weekend however within the workplace as properly.

Knit polos are extra informal, however the truth that they possess a collar and buttons makes them much more dressed up than the everyday T-shirt, which is a profitable mixture. 

Drab colors and boxy fits contributed to the downfall of knit polo shirts in the 80s and 90s.

Historical past of Knitted Polos

Colours and Match

Sadly, like many issues with regards to menswear, knit polos fell out of favor within the 80s and 90s. And though these 80s and 90s knit polos have been impressed by these of yesteryear, oftentimes, they have been portrayed in actually drab colours and boxy suits, like these related to FRIENDS character Chandler Bing.

[Image Credit: Vintage Dancer]

So, due to this, within the 80s and 90s, it’s solely pure that knit polos weren’t extremely popular for a lot of the twenty first century, however in recent times, has seen loads of the kinds of the 50s comeback by way of fashionable wearability.

Very like in earlier many years, at this time’s movie stars are giving the knit polo a lift in reputation. For instance, Daniel Craig’s knit polo in Spectre was a a lot talked about aspect of his scorching climate put on when James Bond was in Morocco. As was a lot of James Bond’s wardrobe, this piece got here from Tong Ford and was $960.

How To Put on Knit Polos

Get The Match Proper

Always strive to have the same fit for your cotton and knit polos.
All the time try to have the identical match to your cotton and knit polos.

First issues first, get the match proper. You don’t need a piece like this to look dishevelled, however on the opposite finish of the spectrum, we additionally don’t need this piece to be too tight. Regardless that the supplies in a knit polo will differ from a cotton polo, you actually ought to try to have the match be the identical.

If you happen to’re confused about polo shirt match, you possibly can try our different information, the place Kyle goes into how a polo shirt ought to match.

Polo Shirts: Your Information to Shopping for, Styling, Historical past & Extra

Go With Stable Colours

One of many issues that date most of the knit polos are stripes and coloration blocking. Once more, refer again to Chandler Bing. If you happen to purchase one thing with loads of coloration and sample, you possibly can in a short time appear to be you’re sporting a bowling shirt, or a nasty Seventies costume. Subsequently, it’s finest to choose a strong coloration the place you possibly can showcase the knitted materials. And very like different knitted clothes like sweaters, a basic cable knit will look lots higher than a bunch of untamed patterns.

For A Classic Aesthetic

As knitted polos do have a extra Golden Age of Menswear aesthetic, you would possibly wish to go all in and go together with an entire vintage-inspired outfit. So, to make this look good with out making it appear to be a dressing up, right here’s some recommendation to take.

Go all in with a complete vintage-inspired outfit to avoid making your outfit costume-y.
Go all in with an entire vintage-inspired outfit to keep away from making your outfit costume-y.

Maintain your polo tucked into your trousers. The trousers ought to be high-waisted with deep pleats; consider one thing like Hollywood trousers or gurkha trousers. You may also add in some informal footwear, like a pair of spectators or white bucks, and for those who’re feeling actually courageous, add in a blazer, and further factors for those who put the polo collar over the lapels.

If you happen to’re actually feeling like topping it off, add it in an ascot. If you happen to catch a polo strong in coloration, including a bit splash round your neckline is an efficient contact right here.

For A Basic (Understated Class) Look

In fact, a vintage-based ensemble won’t be for everybody, so let’s think about how one can incorporate a knitted polo right into a basic look stuffed with understated magnificence.

Easy chinos will kind the outfit properly, or you possibly can go together with a pair of gurkha trousers, however regardless, we recommend tucking the polo in. Additionally, remember the fact that your chinos or gurkha trousers don’t need to be as stuffed with a reduce to have a very good look. However on the similar time, we additionally would advocate that you just don’t go for a thin match.

A plain pair of Derby footwear make for an amazing pair of footwear and keep away from darkish colours as they usually elevate the formality stage. As an alternative, go for like a mid-brown. As an alternative of a sports activities jacket, go for a shawl-collared cardigan. On this look, a structured sports activities jacket would simply look approach too formal, whereas the cardigan seems much more relaxed. However don’t fear, placing a knit polo with a knitted cardigan isn’t like a Canadian tuxedo; you possibly can put on knit and knit.

For A Fashionable Take

If you happen to’re on the lookout for a extra modern or fashionable tackle this, we’ve you coated as properly. 

Begin by switching out the chinos for some sartorial denim; a very good pair of darkish wash denims which can be reduce to fit your needs is a good addition to maintain your basic wardrobe related. By selecting darkish blue tones, your pants will look good however not too stuffy.

Cordovan sneakers are spot on for contemporary styling.
Cordovan sneakers are spot-on for modern styling.

Including in some well-designed leather-based sneakers is the subsequent step right here. A cordovan gown sneakers as an ideal instance of the kind of factor we’re speaking about right here. Easy, elegant, however spot on for modern styling. And for many who aren’t followers of sneakers, a basic penny idler would look nice right here, too.

An overshirt or shacket would additionally spherical out the outfit properly, providing you with a bit little bit of utility and a few further pockets. Once more, a blazer or sports activities jacket would simply be a bit bit too formal, so including in an overshirt balances it out properly.

Overshirts & Shackets for Males: Timeless or Development?

Knit Polos: Timeless or Development?

Nathan confirming that knit polos are timeless!
Knit Polos: Are They Timeless or Development?

Given every part that we’ve mentioned at this time, we’re firmly within the camp that they’re a timeless piece, if carried out appropriately. In any case, we’re followers of basic menswear, so we’re very comfortable when a basic piece spikes in reputation. However consider, for those who’re including one to your wardrobe, so as to add one which doesn’t get dated rapidly. Deal with an amazing match and easy fashion, so you possibly can transcend developments.

As an added bonus, this type of classic development appears to be in proper now, so that you additionally might discover ones which can be gently used for a extremely nice worth. Nonetheless, we’d nonetheless advocate that you just purchase one thing new, as they reduce, and the situation will final lots longer than a classic piece. 

What are your ideas on knitted polos? Is it one thing that you just already personal that you just put on each single day? We wish to hear extra about it within the feedback under.

Outfit Rundown

Nathan is wearing a striped button down shirt, tan chinos, and loafers.
Nathan is sporting a striped button-down shirt, tan chinos, and loafers.
Shadow Stripe Ribbed Socks Grey and Prussian Blue Fil d'Ecosse Cotton - Fort Belvedere

Fort Belvedere

Shadow Stripe Ribbed Socks Gray and Prussian Blue Fil d’Ecosse Cotton – Fort Belvedere

At the moment, I’ve a basic enterprise informal ensemble. I used to be going to put on a knitted polo, however the one which we ordered was approach too tight. So, as an alternative, I’m sporting a blue and white striped college Oxford material button-down shirt. It’s made to measure by Correct Fabric. I’ve a easy brown belt and a few L.L. Bean tan chinos.

My socks are our Fort Belvedere Prussian blue and grey shadow stripes. On my ft is a pair of blue suede unlined Loro Piana Summer time Stroll loafers. These are one other piece which can be very fashionable proper now. If you wish to try these socks, or any of the opposite cool merchandise we’ve over at Fort Belvedere, try our store right here. My cologne at this time is one which I am going with very often, which is Aventus by Creed.


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