Tobacco Gabardine

May 9th, 2017

Gabardine was invented in 1879 by Thomas Burberry, the founder of the Burberry fashion house in Hampshire England.

The original fabric, typically made from worsted wool or cotton, was treated with waterproofing before being tightly woven into it’s signature durable twill. The genius of Burberry was figuring out how to use a weaving technique to create a water-repellent textile made from natural fibers (like wool & cotton) to replace the heavy, non-breathing rubberized fabrics that had been the only option for wet conditions at the time.

Due to gabardine’s innovative performance qualities, Burberry’s fabric quickly became a big hit with explorers and adventurers of his day. It was worn by polar explorers like Ronald Amundsen, the first man to reach the South Pole in 1911, and Ernest Shackleton, the legendary leader of three British polar expeditions. So, like a lot of historical menswear, this fabric started with a great purpose and a focus on functionality.  

Eventually the use of gabardine grew over time and it was used for a lot more than rain coats. Bespoke tailors adopted it for pocket linings and garment trims, where durability and strength (while remaining lightweight) were priorities. As fabric spinning and weaving techniques continued to improve (as they do every year), gabardines became thinner, lighter, stronger and more versatile. Today men swear by gabardine for use in suits, trousers, overcoats, windbreakers, etc. primarily because it is unmatched in terms of strength-per-ounce.

For our SS  ’17 collection, I knew I wanted to find the perfect 4-season version, and I did. Our pure wool gabardine is a 9 ounce cloth woven in Italy and available in three rich colors: Tobacco, Burgundy and Royal.

To give you an idea of the 4-season versatility of this fabric, I took the Tobacco version for a spin around SoHo.

Put ‘Em in the Mixer

Somewhere between khaki and brown, “tobacco” is an extremely versatile color to open up your wardrobe.

It flatters most skin tones and can be paired with just about any other color, texture or pattern – no matter the season.


Burgundy Worsted Vest

Yellow Bengal Stripe Oxford Shirt

Comfy but Sharp

When Spring throws some unexpected cold weather at you, swap out the jacket for one of our favorite layering pieces: the shawl cardigan.


Wool Gaberdine Vest in Tobacco

Tobacco Gaberdine Trouser

All Business

It doesn’t get more powerful than the three-piece suit. When you need to be at the top of your game, go all-in.

You can always make an adjustment later by losing the vest, or the jacket.

  • Round sunglasses by Vint & York ·
  • Blue Candy Stripe Shirt by Articles of Style ·
  • Wool Gaberdine Suit in Tobacco by Articles of Style ·
  • Navy knit tie by Ralph Lauren Black Label ·
  • Cordovan “Jefferson” wingtips by Allen Edmonds

Thanks, as always, for reading.

Yours in style,

Dan Trepanier

Photography by Alex Crawford