Confessions of a Metrosexual

As the weather gets warmer — or so we hope — and the time comes to supplement our wardrobes with spring gear, I would like to highlight one of the most useful spring/ fall wardrobe pieces: the double-zippered black sweater. Whether you need a thin top layer, want some wool under your sportcoat for a little more protection and warmth, or if you just don’t want your warm clothes to bunch up at the waistline, these sweaters can quickly become a daily part of your wardrobe.

The thing that separates the double zippered sweater from others, such as the single- zippered sweater, or the cardigan, is the universal stylishness of it. Single zippered sweaters, even if they are worn very snug , will bunch up at the waistline, especially when one is sitting, ruining any and all attempts at a streamlined, profile. Cardigans are only stylish when matched with a more upscale look, like over a button down shirt and underneath a sports jacket.

One can avoid the waist bunch by unbuttoning the bottom two buttons, but it is very difficult to avoid looking like someone’s grandfather. The double zippered sweater, on the other hand, can be sporty, stylish, casual, or chic, depending on how it is paired with other styles; and the fact that one can open up the bottom removes the problem of having the sweater bunch up at the waistline. At The Cynic, both head editor Nick Rahaim and myself swear by these oh-so-useful sweaters, because they really can be worn with anything. Going to the gym? This sweater works perfectly with track pants and a tee-shirt.

The zippers say “sporty,” the tighter fit afforded around the waist says “fit,” and the whole look says “meterosexual with a six-pack”. Perfect. Going to an interview? Any prospective employer would be impressed with someone who enters the room having layered a thin double zippered sweater over a button down and underneath a sports jacket.

It says you are willing to live in the present, without forgetting the lessons of the past. And again, the ability to unzip the bottom of the sweater allows you to maintain the classic hourglass physique, even while layering heavily to avoid the cold weather. I wear my double zippered sweater almost every day. I wear it with baggy jeans, fitted slacks, button down shirts, and even with another sweater underneath, provided that it’s relatively thin and not directly underneath the double zippered sweater. For example, a thin cashmere underneath a matching dress shirt can be covered by my double zippered black sweater, using it as a thin jacket. That’s real warmth, without having to look like the Michelin man.

There are versions of the double zippered black sweater with pockets, but for my money, I would invest in one without them. As much as pockets are useful, they take away from the fitted look of the sweater. Unless you plan on wearing it strictly as a thin jacket, I would go with a pocket-less style, preferably with the most subtle, smallest zipper you can find. For good examples of the double zippered black sweater, look to the Banana Republic, Nautica, or Lines.