I don't look like Robert Redford, and I didn't/don't have Meryl's money, so for a young man putting together a working wardrobe, linen didn't make much sense. My masters would have shown me quickly to the door.
Fast forward a few years, until say 2007 or so. Scott Schuman of The Sartorialist published this photo.
I take a look in the mirror, and say I'm old enough to pull off a bit of linen. It's likely to be tough sell at home, but c'est l'vie.
Fast forward again to summer 2009. Schuman does it again.
I'm floored by the details of this jacket. Mentally, I'm composing my own. In the mean time I bought several linen suits. Research. I wanted to get a feel of how linen worked. I fell in love. I enjoyed the creases. However, the heavier the material the more rumples, the fewer wrinkles.
Scott begins to rub it in. I feel like I'm in "The Blues Brothers". It must be a mission from the gods. "Find a heavy linen jacket", they said.
I hesitated. I rationalized my sloth. Closet's too small, time to save some money, it's too late for this year, and on and on.
Then Mr. Mort adds his two cents worth. This is the jacket you were meant to have, said Mort.
Not so fast. If I was going to do it, it was going to be my way. Unlike one you would ever find in a store. Unlike one, I would ever see again.
Two weeks ago I succumbed. Made my list, went to the tailor. Sing like this I said.
Unconstructed, one button, shawl collar, side vents, patch pockets, working sleeve buttonholes picked in baby blue, half lined. I want to wear it like a cardigan sweater.
Today the tailor's translation of my vision came home. It was worth the wait. As I have said before, you need to think a problem through, thoroughly. Once you understand the problem, the solution is often obvious.
You've waited long enough. Here it is.
The blue stitching on the jacket button may have been a mistake. Easily fixable.
The cloth is still very stiff. Needs a bit of the Fred Astaire throw it against the wall treatment, or even better to be rolled up in a gym bag for a couple of weeks. I more likely to wear it soft. Also, it's surprisingly heavy. Not uncomfortably so, but noticeably.