What to wear when a jacket is too warm, but a shirt isn’t quite enough? Linger no longer in front of your closet, now that the shirt jacket has arrived.
A novelty first embraced in the 1940’s (as the shirt-jac), the 1970’s shirt jacket took on a new look with double-knit polyester, denim and corduroy. Even the leather jacket looked like a simple shirt with two breast flap-pockets, or was funkified when a suede body paired up with knit, sweater-style arms.
The fabulous thing about the shirt jacket was its versatility: it offered comfortable warmth when worn as shirt, or looked extra snappy as a jacket over a nice turtleneck or wide-collared shirt. The shirt jacket could be worn with your favorite pair of plaid flares, but was best when paired with the same material. Usually sold with a matching pair of slacks, the two-piece outfit was a starter suit for the youngsters. It’s never too early to look fashionable in a Winnie the Pooh suit.
The double-knit polyester shirt jacket was a family favorite for both style and durability. The bold, solid colors stood out from the crowd when stitched with a contrasting, white thread. Snaps were a common closure, as were cuffs. The rugged material didn't wrinkle, was difficult to stain, and was the perfect 'suit' to wear to weddings and other proper family occasions when Mom knew you'd inevitably end up crawling around on the floor under the tables. With double-knit, no one would ever know.
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