Although we’re still in the throes of autumn, cold weather will creep up quickly. Now is the perfect time to prep your winter wardrobe so you don’t encounter any surprises when the mercury dips low. It’s time to bust out your heavy cable knits, winter boots, and wool socks, and stock up on layered clothing options. You’ll thank us in another few weeks when you’re ready, willing, and prepared for the cold. We’ve rounded up seven essential pieces you need to build a functional, stylish winter wardrobe.
1. An oversized coat
You may not have this one hanging in your closet, but it’s autumn/winter 2015’s hottest menswear style. Coat styles range from camel overcoats to the oversized parka — as well as the checkered oversized coat. On the runways, outerwear has been blowing up. “It’s not about ordering the next size up so it’s baggy,” says celebrity menswear stylist Ashley Weston to FashionBeans. “You still want the coat to fit the same way, in terms of length of the sleeves and the overall length.”
When rocking this style, make sure the rest of your outfit is tailored and fitted to balance out the proportions of your outfit. If you’re wearing a checkered coat, make sure that your outfit is monochrome to prevent the print from being overwhelming. The oversized coat is a must-have for your winter closet; it’s roomy enough for you to add layers when it’s bitterly cold. Try this budget-friendly Wool-blend Coat from H&M.
2. A large scarf
If you want to keep up with the current trends, then you need to add a large knit scarf to your wardrobe — it’s large enough to cover your shoulders and doubles as an added outer layer. Huffington Post notes the large scarf, or blanket scarf, is one of the top 10 menswear fashion trends for the season, as seen in the collections of Burberry and 3.1 Phillip Lim. FashionBeans dubbed this new style the “manket,” which consists of hulking woven scarves. The Art of Manliness provides a full guide to wrapping your scarf correctly. Try this Men’s Knit Scarf from Etsy maker, Tarstitch.
3. A denim jacket
When it starts to get cold, denim jackets are ideal for layering. Being that this was one of spring/summer 2015’s biggest trends, you can now capitalize on this style even more. The denim jacket is a fantastic contrasting layer and can go over or underneath a cardigan sweater — although opt for a contrasting bulky knit if you’re wearing the denim jacket underneath. Simply throw your oversized coat on top of the mix and you stylish, layered outfit. Try Levi’s classic Trucker Jacket.
4. A vest
Although vests seem more functional than fashionable, the modern interpretation of the classic vest has become a slimmer, more flattering garment. When looking for a modern vest, your ideal option is one with clean lines and a streamlined fit, so it won’t add any unnecessary bulk to your frame. You don’t want to look like you’re wearing a life vest or flotation device. Try Burberry Brit’s “Roston” Suede Trim Diamond Quilted Vest or Jeremiah’s “Dane” Quilted Nylon Vest as an inner or outer layer.
5. A sweater or cardigan
This is quite the obvious choice for winter. Every man should have several sweaters in his wardrobe for any and all occasions. Mix up your sweater style with V-necks and crew necks, slouchy styles, cardigans, and pullovers. Different textures, fabrics, and colors give you endless sweater possibilities. Esquire has a comprehensive list of the best and warmest sweaters you can wear this season. Check out these suggestions from Brostick.
6. Sturdy boots
You have your everyday boots in your closet, but you need a pair that will withstand whatever the cold months throw at you. Men’s Fitness rounds up the best all-weather boots, leaving you with the difficult task of picking just one.
7. The obvious essentials
Wool socks, gloves, beanies, and earmuffs… The list goes on and on, and these essentials never go out of style.