If you have a black pea coat for winter and a beige trench for fall, you might be satisfied with your outerwear choices.
They’re classy. Sophisticated. Versatile. But they’re also fairly common—and if you’re looking for ways to make a statement with your wardrobe, it’s time to branch out into more creative outerwear. Go for a traditional look that’s anything but ordinary.
We recommend learning how to wear a camel coat.
The Camel Coat, Past and Present
Most people assume “camel” refers only to the warm beige color of this classic statement piece. You’d be surprised to learn that the original camel coats were crafted from the hair of real Bactrian camels. The hair is sheared or collected once per year during the animals’ molting season and blended together to create a warm yet lightweight fabric.
It’s a genius choice of material, really.
Camels endure the extreme temperatures of desert climates (both freezing nights and burning sun) thanks to the makeup of their fur. Like wool, camel hair can be incredibly flexible, lightweight, and hard-wearing—especially the highest grade fabric, which is made from luxurious light-colored undercoat fibers.
Camel coats were introduced in Britain during the wool and leather shortages of the first and second world wars. Jaeger, the first major fashion company to maximize the potential of camel hair fabric, crafted durable utilitarian-style coats and sold them to civilians and military personnel alike.
Today, this outerwear item makes just as big a statement. From James Dean and Ralph Lauren to Harry Styles and Kanye West, celebrities are keeping this coat modern and relevant.
How to Wear a Camel Coat in 4 Looks
Ready to see this iconic overcoat in action? The following looks can be adapted or modified to include staples from your own wardrobe. No matter which dress code you’re following, the main goal here is to follow the cardinal rule of men’s fashion:
Always mix your neutrals.
- Saturday Brunch
This look starts with narrow-legged light wash jeans. Roll the ends of the trousers up once or twice so a bit of your ankle shows, and don a pair of dark brown boat shoes. No socks. A classic black V-neck t-shirt (long or short sleeved, depending on the weather) will make your camel coat stand out in a really good way. Wear a simple three-button camel overcoat unbuttoned for the full effect.
- (Business) Casual
Dark pants, dark shoes, and dark socks are the foundation for this suped-up casual look. Try a high-quality pair of dark chinos or trousers with a simple Chelsea boot in black. On top wear a rusty red crew neck sweater alone or over a white twill dress shirt for extra warmth. A buttoned camel trench coat will reveal a tasteful pop of red at your neckline.
- Office Appropriate
Start this professional look with your favorite workhorse suit in charcoal or navy and a good pair of wingtips. A classic light blue poplin dress shirt gives a little bit of color to your look and can be offset nicely with a solid or lightly-patterned necktie. The camel coat over top of everything is what makes a big statement when you walk into the office—you’ll definitely notice heads turning.
- Date Night Out
This neutral-colored combo is perfect for a classy dinner date. Don a pair of dark chalkstripe suit trousers over your best oxblood brogues. Wear a white dress shirt, sans tie, top button undone. Bonus points if it has a unique collar detail, like the Canclini cutaway collared shirt. Roll up your sleeves to the elbows and top with your camel coat, unbuttoned. For extra style points, drape a burgundy scarf around your neck and button your coat over the loosely hanging ends.
Investing in Custom Outerwear
Now that you’ve got some ideas to work with, you need to know one thing: Not all camel coats are created equal.
Some feature camel hair fabric that’s blended with cashmere or wool for an even softer texture. On the other hand, some are made from lower-quality hair that can be wiry and prone to shedding. Others are entirely made from wool fibers that have been died and carded to give a similar camel color but a slightly different finished look.
If you’re not sure where to find the best camel coat, take a stroll through a Knot Standard showroom.
We create custom men’s outerwear from the highest-quality designer fabrics, according to your exact measurements and specifications. When you purchase a camel coat from us, you’re ensuring you receive a garment that’s perfectly suited to your body, your preferences, and your style.
You’ll also be partnering with an expert personal stylist who can give even more advice on how to make this wardrobe staple part of your everyday look.