The right side of smart: The Oliver Brown Gilet

160318-oliverbrown-0762 It’s a rare fusion, a well-cut gilet. It’s one of those things that you see other people wear from time to time and wonder quite how you’ve managed without one all these years – and where they got theirs. It’s a statement, softly spoken. Perhaps there’s something about that collar that, over a freshly ironed shirt, that makes it as smart as it is practical yet without being overly formal. Worn over a simple lambswool jumper it looks positively cosy, but not as stifling as a tweed jacket would be under the same circumstances. (Then again, since it buttons right up, it’s great at keeping the wind out when you need it to.) What’s more, the ample pockets are there to be used – whether that's for cartridges out in the field or the inevitable sheaf of passports and boarding passes that are liable to get confused at the airport. Smart enough (and warm enough) for almost any occasion but casual enough for regular weekend wear; cool enough for the British summer but warm enough for our weak winter sunshine. The question is which one to go for. The double-thickness, two-ply cashmere reversible with suede trim? Or the 100% British tweed with Nehru collar? The choice – like the choice of tweed – is yours.