Can A Man Wear A Sweater Vest Without Looking Like Urkel?

by MR Magazine Staff

For some guys, the sweater vest will always be menswear’s dodo bird. “Anything designed to keep you warm that doesn’t have sleeves is by definition a failure,” said Brook Lundy, co-founder of greeting card parody website Someecards. “On top of that, most sweater vests are just ugly. It’s just lose-lose.” Layered under a jacket, a sweater vest can make sense—adding warmth and visual interest but not compromising the fit of the jacket’s sleeves. Worn on its own, said Mr. Lundy, it becomes unmoored, too incomplete to function as outerwear. “I need my sweaters to do some heavy-lifting,” he added. Worse, sleeveless sweaters have been tainted by unfortunate associations. From your junior-high science teacher to the taunted nerds of TV’s teen comedies, sweater vests, with their baggy silhouettes and argyle prints, telegraph schlubbiness. “That’s too bad,” said DJ and entrepreneur Brendan Fallis. “If André 3000 wore a sweater vest, you’d be, like, that’s pretty dope.” (Note: He has and looked reasonably dope.) Mr. Fallis also cites the sweater vest’s sad history as a golfer cliché. He gravitates toward “really thin cashmere, V-neck sweaters” with fully realized sleeves. Read more at The Wall Street Journal.