The Cheap Alternatives to Autumn's Must-Have Jackets

Get a jump-start on fall with these must-have autumn outerwear options

Not surprisingly, the best-dressed men in the room innately understand the principles of great style. Primary among them is the illusion that they put little to no effort into their appearance. For decades, well-dressed men have mastered this sort of pulled-together minimalism that conceals actual effort. It’s no different from the perfect stubble. Sure, it appears convincingly lazy, but it’s immaculately maintained and crafted with the utmost care.

While the blistering hot months of summer can degrade any well-groomed gent’s appearance, the first chill of fall is only a month or so away. In preparation for dressin’ season, we turn our attention to the ultimate transitional piece: the lightweight jacket. Today we highlight a few must-have options that you’ll want to wear this fall, as well as the look for the low, a less expensive option for those on a budget.

mr porter blouson jacket
Mr. P Suede Blouson Jacket, $850 / Mr. Porter
asos suede 2
The look for the low, $158 / ASOS

Few items in a man’s wardrobe are more important (or transitional) than a good suede jacket. They typically carry a weighty price tag, but don’t let that scare you away. This is an item worthy of your investment. If you take proper care of this staple, it’s very likely that you’ll still be wearing it in a decade. You’ll want to try on a few to get the fit and cut right. This one from Mr. P is a favorite, but there are some options for the low too.

orange kimono jacket
Kapital Patchwork Bandana-Print Jacket, $670 / Mr. Porter
shades of grey kimono
The look for the low, $89 / Shades of Grey

Before you quickly shy away from this traditional Japanese staple, let’s be clear: There’s absolutely no reason to be fearful of the kimono. The silhouette is easy to wear, and it’s a great layering piece that will undeniably elevate whatever you’re wearing underneath. This lightweight iteration won’t be too warm in the early moments of fall. And if you still feel a little wary, just look at it as a slightly smarter denim jacket sans buttons. 

bode ny jacket
Bode Patchwork Quilt Jacket, $1,554 / Bode New York
mrporter patchwork jacket cheap
The look for the low, $140 / Mr. Porter

Bode, the brainchild of Emily Bode and a recent recipient of the much-acclaimed CFDA Fashion Award, continues its ambitious work turning everyday treasures from the past into coveted style pieces for the present. Bode’s largely one-of-a-kind outerwear is masterful in its details and creativity. Thus, wearing one of her pieces—like this 1930s Turkish quilt turned into lightweight jacket—says that you know a thing or two about good style and, maybe even more important, you’re ambitious about your own.

prada jacket
Prada Nylon Hooded Jacket, $1840 / Mr. Porter
nike jacket
The look for the low, $110 / Nike

Prada almost single-handedly brought nylon back into high fashion. Sure, in the sportswear sector, it seemingly never left. But as an elevated fabric that can be worn with proper trousers and premium shirting, the swishy material has never been more in demand. Prada made sure to place activewear at this jacket’s core with drawstrings around the hood and zip closure. Throw this on during a breezy autumn morning or as a top layer worthy of a casual evening out.

corridor jacket
Corridor Linen Overshirt, $235 / Corridor
topman jacket cheap
The look for the low, $65 / Topman

The effortless nature of the overshirt is quintessential for fall. With a bit more bulk than your average shirt and a little less structure, it’s meant to be thrown on over your fit as a light layer. Although technically meant to function as a warming piece, a good overshirt can also add color and texture to what you’re already wearing.

isabel marant jacket
Isabel Marant Corduroy Jacket, $750 / Neiman Marcus
levis jacket cheap
The look for the low, $98 / Levi's

You may already have a few denim jackets in traditional washes, but we’re willing to wager that you don’t have that same trucker cut constructed in corduroy. This hefty layer for fall is ’70s-era style made new again. Marant’s iteration is cut relaxed to comfortably top a sweater or a long-sleeve shirt. For a more laid-back look, pair this jacket with your favorite graphic tee.

matches fashion expensive
Officine Generale Unlined Blazer, $425 / Matches Fashion
uniqlo jacket cheap
The look for the low, $60 / Uniqlo

In the earliest moments of autumn, when outdoor gatherings persist as if summer never left, you need a good transitional jacket to play dress-up in the evenings. A good unstructured blazer will come in handy. Officine Générale nails the look with this clever military-green piece. Distilling the stuffiness of a traditional blazer, this single-breasted gem has shrunken lapels and additional pockets that work in tandem to create the illusion of proper suiting. You can wear this jacket with trousers, jeans or even tailored track pants. It’s a transitional piece that can look as sharp or pared down as you choose, depending largely on your accessories.

Related: What Are Guys Wearing in Hudson Yards?

Related: The 20 Adidas Sneakers Every Collector Should Own

Related: 4 Entrepreneurial Designers Spill Their Greatest Business Tips

Did you like this article?
Thumbs Up
Thumbs Down