Share

Denim or cargo? Where to find the perfect Hong Kong jacket

I used to think a denim jacket was the most versatile cover-up. I realise I may be behind the times as I see more military styles these days. Where should I get mine?
In the Field, Central

The Dictator rules: You said it, not me. But let me repeat it: you are behind the times. First, there isn’t a sole “it” item you must wear in order to be current. Second, denim jackets will always have a place in our wardrobe. Third, military and, more speci­fic­ally, four-pocket cargo or field jackets are not so much an autumn-winter trend as one of several jacket staples that include leather, blazers, tuxedos, bombers. We haven’t even started on the coats. If you were, however, to choose one this season, a cargo jacket would be just fine. Typically being of a light cotton, it is also a good transitional piece before the weather turns chillier. Club Monaco’s is close to perfect, a classic made from crisp army-green cotton with cargo pockets and a cinched waist (HK$2,690). Marc Jacobs has a top contender in military-green cotton with front pockets and a belt at the waist (HK$4,890). Japan-based label Tu es mon Trésor transforms straightforward cotton military jackets with quirky appliques and decorative elements (HK$8,600 to HK$9,800; Lane Crawford). Other fashion houses doing them include Leur Logette, Saint Laurent, Haider Ackermann and Nili Lotan. Of course, if you know what you’re doing, a cheaper casual brand could serve you well. The Gap’s cargo jacket comes in army-green or cinnabar red cotton with a smidge of spandex for comfort and stretch, and features the requisite pockets and the ever flattering gathered waist, plus epaulettes (HK$699).

I’ve heard you say trainers all the time are not good, but I practically live in mine! I have some classic pairs, which I’d like to customise to make them unique to me and a bit different from what my friends are wearing. Where can I buy those charms or bits to stick onto the laces?
Lace Race, On the Run

The Dictator: Good? Who are you, Donald Trump? Let’s ex­pand your vocabulary past the level of an ignorant child. “Appropriate” is a better word. I have gone on record saying I don’t think trainers are accept­able in all circumstances. They look cute with a skirt, but some­times the occasion will call for a chic flat or sexy heel. Speaking of propriety, charms, slides and decorations for trainers are amusing, but can be hard to pull off past one’s teenage years. But who am I to say? Society now seems to accept puerile behaviour (and dressing) from its most senior members. Before we begin, here’s a crazy sugges­tion: don’t wear the same shoes as your friends. You must be able to find something different from the thousands of trainers out there. I’m sure purists would rather burn your Air Jordans than see them sporting a smiley face, but here goes. You can find all sorts of shoe-lace decora­tions at TopShop, from sets of emoji-inspired doo­dads or speech bubbles with words such as “yeah” (HK$119 for eight) to bejewelled or gold-tone and pearl designs (HK$139 for eight). At beecausecharms.com you’ll find categories as diverse as Bridal, Food Drink, and Patriotic (about HK$116 each). Ericasara.com sells metal shoe-lace tags(HK$93 and up) while others offer a personal­isation service, including tiesncuffs.com.au (HK$112 and up). For more, there’s always etsy.com.