Century-plus-old Brit clothier Barbour has long been synonymous with rugged outerwear that’s as equally suited for a quail hunt in the English countryside as a brace of bourbons amid a domestic cityscape. Stateside, Jack Spade is a respectably established, if comparably young, clothier (with just under two decades of existence, after all). It specializes in utilitarian reinventions of classic staples like billfolds and messenger bags, but with a singular, witty, and modern twist. Improbably, the two have come together to create a limited range of jackets and bags that are truly the best of both worlds. Our pick: The waxed-cotton-and-Cordura-nylon Hopper jacket.
If you’re already a Barbour fan or customer, you’ll be pleased: Everything you know and love about its exceptional gear is here, along with an old-fashioned (but very much of the moment) club collar for added panache. The quilted orange vest can be buttoned-out and worn alone on more temperate days (or over a thick shirt during hunting expeditions), and the whole ensemble is ready for the field. Or, for a night out on the town, if you’re feeling especially dapper.
A quick note on wear: The waxed cotton will feel a bit stiff at first, but the break-in period is mercifully brief: If you wear the jacket regularly, think days, not weeks or months. Much like your favorite pair of jeans, after a short while this jacket becomes almost custom-imprinted with creases and folds that reflect your particular way of moving. And also like jeans, don’t make the mistake of buying this jacket too big. It’s meant to fit you, not smother you. [$799; jackspade.com]
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