It’s not cheap. But they got a lot of things right with this jacket.
J. Crew has gone back to a more modern, sleek interpretation of the classic navy blazer this year. Last year’s “Club” Blazers, with their brass buttons and patch pockets, were certainly more traditional. And while some liked that look, many of us preferred the previous incarnation of their navy wool blazer from 2013. That design skipped the very traditional brass buttons, and instead favored tonal buttons and flap pockets. These new “Legacy” blazers takes that simple design from 2013, makes a few small design improvements, and maintains the solid build quality and awesome fabric that they’ve been using for years.
Many will need to shorten the sleeves, but non-functioning buttons makes that a breeze.
The biggest difference between the Legacy Blazer and the blazers from 2013 is the “topstitching” that borders the lapel and pockets. Unlike pick stitching which has fabric evenly spaced between each thread, topstiching has a more compact, unbroken stitch, and on this blazer that helps to add a bit more heft to the edges of where it runs. That slight raising towards the edge of the lapels and pockets helps this thing look more like a sportcoat, and less like an orphaned suit jacket. It’s subtle, but it makes a difference.
Topstitching creates a slightly more casual feel, thanks to its borders.
Like J. Crew’s expensive navy blazers of the past, this one has a nicely substantial feeling chest piece. It’s not heavy or bulky, but you certainly notice it compared to other jackets with less or no structure. And that half-canvas chest piece should mold to your torso over time, making an already comfortable jacket even more so with wear.
Does well with jeans, chinos, and wool trousers.
The wool is the same Loro Piana Italian Super 130s Merino that they’ve used in the past. And it’s friggin’ spectacular. It’s extremely difficult to do it justice in pictures. Looks way better in person. Very soft. Good weight. Nice and breathable. It’s not a dead looking fabric either. It’s certainly not shiny, but the light does catch it nicely. It looks and feels expensive.
The back is just half-lined in a butterfly style for ease of movement, and the edges of that exposed interior are kept in check by really well done, contrast taping. Shoulders are nice and soft. No linebacker-look here. And the sleeve buttons are non-functioning, which makes for easy tailoring.
Half lined for breathe-ability. Extra Fine Super 130s Merino from Italy.
This is the kind of blazer you can wear with just about anything, and will look for excuses to put on. Perfect with jeans or chinos. Also great with wool trousers. And while a classic brass-buttoned navy blazer can look dated (“where’s the yacht club?”) with trousers and a white shirt … pairing this blazer with a crisp white shirt, some slim wool trousers, and a pair of sleek shoes or boots looks like a completely different outfit. More inspired by Italian gents, and less invoking Thurston Howell III.
It’s better than good. It’s great. The only drawback is the price (a reach for many of us), as well as the habit J. Crew has of excluding it from almost all of their codes (last week’s tiered no exclusions sale not withstanding). But it’s worth saving up for. If it goes on sale? Then it’s gonna be tough to not spend the cash on it.