Everything comes from an armor of the Middle Ages, the “twill”. In Scotland these resistant iron coatings were very important for the soldiers of the time, as the herringbone weave made them super protective in the event of a physical confrontation with an opponent in battle. Strengthened by this teaching, they also used that type of weaving in fabrics to make their civilian clothes and thus “twill” (Scottish pronunciation “tweel”) became a trademark since those ancient times. A slight distortion of the pronunciation , due to the accent of the English who adopted that fabric in a short time, which made it become “tweed”. Today one of the immortals of world fashion is the tweed suit,which becomes the protagonist of the catwalks and collections of the most important fashion houses of the moment.
Characteristics of tweed
The main feature of the tweed fabric still today is that herringbone shape that fixes the carded wool sweaters so compact that they create resistant and beautiful clothes at the same time. A second characteristic of this material is the color: the “real” tweed must be a mixture of grays and blacks, with some white thread here and there. Today there are different interpretations and variations, even colored, of tweed but the immortal classic is only one and you can’t go wrong.
Another characteristic of tweed is elegance while remaining formal . Whether used on men’s dresses and coats, or on women’s skirts and suits, this fabric expresses almost eternal style and beauty, as it is very resistant. Many identify it with the fifties or sixties of the twentieth century , but with every revival of that vintage fashion everyone wants to wear it!
The story of the tweed suit: an intuition of Coco Chanel
The tweed suit was an incredible provocation of the absolute genius of Coco Chanel . Derived from the Middle Ages, in the following centuries the tweed fabric had been reserved for the male universe . First to the world of work alone, then to elegant clothes. But only for man, because he is man – you know! – who works outside the home, and therefore needs well-made and resistant clothes. But in 1920, the “disrespectful” and extravagant Coco Chanel amazed the world by creating a women’s tweed dress . A dress so beautiful that you want to wear it yourself!
The suit was a suit, an already revolutionary garment of its own because it was “stolen” from the men’s riding uniforms. I transformed the feminine taste by replacing the trousers with a knee-length skirt. And from there begins the story of a mythical garment, who is still on the crest of the wave today. A timeless garment that gives style and elegance and that every year appears in the collections of the most famous designers.
How and with what do you wear a tweed suit?
The tweed suit today is used for work environments but mostly for not too formal events . It expresses that elegance which, however, must not be associated with important ceremonies. Modern tweed suits can also be found in particular colors, although pastel colors remain the most suitable.
This specific garment is combined above all with blouses but even better with sweaters in one color, in delicate wool or cotton. The important thing is not to mistake the accessories. Shoes, bags but also belts must somehow recall the color of the tweed suit . So be careful if you plan to choose a modern color, as in the case of a purple, a red, a Scottish design that is too showy. Because what you pair with that tweed will have to have the same or very similar color. Are you willing to take the risk?