THERE is no other item of men’s clothing that is as misunderstood as the Smoking Jacket. It is often seen as affected, foppish, and silly. Nothing could be more far from the truth.
Originating in the late 17th century as the “robe de chambre” and is thought to mimic the silk robes found on Maharajas in India.
As Turkish and Caribbean tobacco became fashionable in the mid 1800’s it was customary for men to retire for a cigar and brandy; while the women enjoyed tea and petit-fours.
It was considered rude and ungentlemanly to expose a woman to “foul” odors and so began rule-of-thumb for a man to don a comfortable, velvet, jacket exclusively to smoke in so as to never expose his lady friend to off-scents.
Although seldom used today, the smoking jacket/house coat although was used by some of history’s greatest Gentlemen like Cary Grand, Frank Sinatra and even Fred Astaire (who was buried in it) wore it in style.
How the Young Gentleman Wears a Smoking Jacket:
Worn with dark trousers the Modern Gentleman can wear his smoking jacket to any event that would require “formal ware” whether it’s the opera, a dark cocktail party or a posh restaurant the smoking jacket adds a touch of flair and personality to the wearer.
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