I’m not fond of the suit vest worn jacket-less, or the waistcoat-on-its-own look, popularized, it seems, by Brooklyn bartenders to match their impressive beards and mustaches. But while bartenders have worn a waistcoat and tie for generations (and wore impressive mustaches in the early 20th Century), it’s not a flattering look if one is not mixing drinks—and was even less flattering in the hippie days when it seemed a suit vest and flared jeans, along with the requisite shoulder length hair, was de rigueur.
I’m also not fond of the puffy vest—seemingly a trend impossible to erase—which does little to keep a pedestrian warm and is useful only if one is engaged in hard labor—construction workers come to mind. But there is, however, a place for a vest on slightly cooler days, or layered under a topcoat on even colder ones, something woolen and not styled as a waistcoat might be. This one is a Persian peasant’s vest—camelhair with a cotton lining—that is worn in colder weather by farm workers who need their arms free to do work. Similar vests can be seen, and bought, throughout South Asia, in case that visa for Iran hasn’t come through yet….