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Did Seattle invent the shacket?
That depends how you define the oft-searched shirt-jacket portmanteau (no French pun intended). Do heavy button-ups qualify as shackets? What about the “light jacket” Miss Congeniality’s Miss Rhode Island claimed was perfect for a date (April 25, to be exact)?
Like many essential pieces of Seattle style, the humble shacket got its start as workwear before it hit the streets—as the nineteenth-century French bleu de travail (now better known as a chore coat), as the shirt worn by Chief Petty Officers in the U.S. Navy.
But the cozy, campfire-ready shackets we’re searching for today are perhaps most closely tied to C.C. Filson’s wool cruising shirt, patented in 1914 as an ordinary shirt combined with “an additional thickness of the shirt fabric” extending from the chest of the garment to insulate the entire back. Sounds like as good a definition for “shacket” as any.
Though it was built for Washington lumbermen working in waterlogged forests and quickly adapted into the red-and-black plaid of early hunters’ camouflage, Filson’s cruising shirt soon entered “the well-dressed man’s wardrobe,” as it was featured in the Seattle Sunday Times in 1936.
Shackets, then, are far from a fad. Still, Adrian Eames of Fremont menswear boutique Eames NW says their popularity seems to increase with each coming year. Why? They’re “an easy way to elevate an outfit that pretty much anyone can pull off,” Eames says. No timber cutting expertise required.
Here are ten shackets we love, from the rugged to the trendy:
Mackinaw Wool Cruiser Jacket, Filson Local
The shacket that started it all. Filson's Mackinaw Cruiser hasn't changed much since 1914, meaning it's still as good for hard work in the woods as it is for sharpening up your everyday wardrobe. And when we say "everyday," we mean it—Filson products may carry a hefty price tag, but they're known to last a lifetime.
Wax London Whiting Overshirt, Eames NW Local
Available in neutral solids and several unique plaids, you're looking at Eames NW's most popular shacket, for good reason. It's loose, light, warm, and serves as the perfect seasonal transition piece.
Wilfred Free Ganna Shirt Jacket, Aritzia
Michigan Chore Coat, Carhartt WIP
Carhartt's more fashion-focused brand, Carhartt WIP, brings the utility of workwear to distinctly streetwear aesthetics—making shackets, especially of this pastel-colored, organic cotton variety, a natural choice.
Just Female Box Shirt Jacket, Pipe and Row Local
Just Female calls upon its Scandinavian roots to design a shacket that's as cozy as it is unaffected, in a simple, cream teddy-style wool and a menswear-esque oversize shape. Take a cue from Just's styling tips and wear it with contrastingly feminine touches, like chiffon and lace.
Leather Button Up, Los Angeles Apparel
Leather trend, meet shacket trend. We think you'll get along great. This simple, vintage-inspired version from the artist formerly known as American Apparel was made from lambskin leather right here in the states—and you'd be hard-pressed to find a high-quality, real leather shirt jacket for less.
BP Quilt-Lined Button Up Shirt, Nordstrom Rack Local
With a color suited to brighter days and a lightly quilted lining that offers both warmth and mobility, this is the piece you'll gleefully pull out of your closet on days when your trusty puffer, at long last, seems like overkill.
Jungmaven Olympic Jacket, Prism Local
This gender-neutral, Los Angeles–made chore coat's light, cotton-and-hemp construction keeps winds out without too much heft. Sized to allow for layering, it earns a rare spot in the Washingtonian's year-round wardrobe.
Karl Lagerfeld Paris Men's Leather Shirt Jacket, Nordstrom Local
Leave it to Karl Lagerfeld to turn a concept that could have been irredeemably "biker" into something truly chic, thanks to a shirt collar, structured pockets, and button closure. Meet the new leather jacket.