How to choose a jacket

Knowing how to choose a jacket calls upon your style preferences and body type

Knowing how to choose a jacket calls upon your style preferences and body type

Many woman consider jackets the ultimate fashion accessory and necessity. They spruce up an otherwise ordinary looking outfit and allow you to change up your look as often as you like. The same item worn with a different pair of pants or a skirt gives the illusion your wardrobe is larger than it really is.

Wondering how to choose a fashionable jacket that works with your personal style and flatters your body type? Consider your personal preferences, what you are going to wear it with and where you are going to wear it.

The word “jacket” comes from the French noun jaquet, meaning a lightweight or small tunic, not as warm as a coat because it is worn indoors and doesn’t serve as protective clothing. It is lighter than a coat.

This item of clothing is versatile. It can be worn with jeans or dress-up pants or over a dress or with a skirt, creating a suit appearance.


The options are nearly endless. Choose from a military type or a loose, flowing swing coat. A leather bomber style may appeal to you or one made from jean material.


  • A wrap jacket is worn with or without a belt. Look for raglan sleeves and material retaining stretch. This item hits below the waist, ideal for the woman who wants to cover up her derriere.
  • A boxy, single button style is perfect for work. It can be dressed down by wearing it with jeans and boots and funky jewelry or dressed up with pearls and a silk blouse or camisole.
  • Consider one featuring color blocking, which is quite fashionable. It may feature red and black or orange and yellow or any combination of color-blocked hues. A jewel-neck style is classic.
  • Another option is the cascade blazer, with besom pockets and princess seams. Besom pockets are cut into the garment, not sewn onto it. There is usually piping or edging along the slit of the pocket. Besom pockets are also called piped, welt or Reece pockets, named after John Reece who invented a particular sewing machine. The pockets on blue jeans are set-out, meaning they were attached to the garment and then stitched around. Besom means set-in. Princess seams are shaped, long seams situated in the front or back of a garment. This seam ensures the garment fits snugly and smoothly. Although a garment may feature both princess seams and darts, usually the seam is used instead of a dart because it emphasizes a small waist or any body part a woman wants to showcase.The seam disguises as well as accentuates, highlight curves or gives the appearance of curves when there aren’t any. The cascade blazer is longer in the back than in the front.
  • A crop jacket, single button, with 3/4 inch sleeves and back box pleat can be fitted or swingy. This can look dressy or casual depending on what it is paired with. Women have favored the crop style for the last 15 years. It can be worn with pants or over a long or short skirt of a dress.
  • If you are partial to the military look, get a double-breasted cropped garment. This is a self-possessed, tailored look.
  • The fitted, pinstripe blazer makes you fit right in with the ‘boys’ at work if that’s what you want. Flap welt pockets and button front are part of this garment. This is professional style.

Every woman should have at least a few jackets in her closet. They come in handy. For instance, if you’re going to an outdoors evening wedding, grab a jacket to put on over your maxi dress when the sun goes down. You are determined to look more professional at work so you need to put on a jacket over that blouse and pencil skirt you are wearing.

The right jacket can make all the difference in your appearance.