How Do You Actually Wear A Beige Blazer? We Have Tips

By Julia Gessler
A COS linen-blend blazer, part of the brand’s exclusive new collection for New Zealand and Australia.

In this styling column, the Viva team offers up their advice on what to wear and how to wear it. Writer Julia Gessler sports a beige blazer in the name of neutrals.

When it comes to buying blazers, my Pavlovian response is to go neutral. A colour that doesn’t

Yet wearing a neutral blazer, and more specifically a beige one, is nebulous because it can be terribly, perilously boring. The problem is that there is a thin line between banality and functionality in a suit, and it’s hard to not fall into the former category when you’re wearing the equivalent of a bread roll.

But we persevere.

While fashion is still moderating its obsession with the “clean girl” aesthetic (the recent “mob wife” look, which trades in leopard print and leather separates, is essentially its antithesis), building a wardrobe of simple staples is still as relevant as ever, and a beige blazer is no exception. It’s a canvas, really, one with real versatility. The trick is to keep it firmly out of Squaresville. Here’s how.

The blazer

If you’re after a blazer with good bones, this one has a lot to offer. It’s from the first-ever COS capsule collection designed exclusively for New Zealand and Australia, titled “New Signatures”, which released last week. It’s a standout even among its other, bolder sibling garments that include various electric cyan dresses and a pretty print that looks like twisting zebra stripes.

I like it because it takes the building blocks of the form — neat collar, neat sleeves, neat buttons — and plays a little — a split at the back that runs up to your shoulder blades, a thin tie for dynamism. There’s a loucheness to it, too, owing to the collection’s affection for deconstructed tailoring. The material is a cotton and linen blend voile, meaning it’s lightweight. The pockets are flapped.

All of it speaks to creative director Karin Gustafsson’s penchant for the minimalist and the unfussy, conspiring to leave you with something concise and wearable. “There’s definitely been a change — people are mindful to what they’re buying and customers are thinking more about quality and longevity,” she told Harper’s Bazaar last year. “You can build a wardrobe that will last a long time, which can be versatile, but it can also show off your personality.”

The advice

When it comes to styling, I’m a firm believer in the idea of composite over category; that you should wear something because you want to, rather than subscribing to any frenzied facsimile of a trend that’s been fed through the TikTok attention economy.

On a bright warm day in the office, I paired this blazer with a cream lace long-sleeved shirt I snapped up second-hand from The RealReal (it looks vaguely like a chic version of a tablecloth). Something textural or patterned is an easy way to temper the staidness of those clean lines. On the bottom I wore a pair of relaxed blue jeans that brushed my ankles (I basically live in them) and matched the jacket’s ease with something equally languid. For my shoes, a black pair of fisherman sandals with typical peekaboo detailing.

It’s the kind of outfit that can handle interest points, so opt for drama a la chocolate floor-sweeping flares or a crisp white shirt with a collar that reaches out to your shoulders. Grab oversize jewellery to accessorise with. It’s about having a sensitivity to the element of surprise — think Helen Frankenthaler-esque colours or trousers that are sparkling and distressed.

The shop

Here, discover beige blazers that build outfits.

Padded shoulders and darting at the waist make this blazer a blend of technical prowess and wearability.

This storm blazer is relaxed and elegant, thanks to a breast pocket, single front button and an oversized silhouette.

Rejina Pyo has an eye for pitch-perfect tailoring. This investment piece features a boxy fit, classic lapel and four shell buttons.

Another easy-wearing look comes courtesy of Australian label Henne, one that’s designed “to remain timeless”.

Local fashion stalwart Karen Walker offers hers with single welt pockets, structured shoulders, accented side panelling and a long-line cut for a look that’s a safe bet.

Another brand with a knack for serving up staples is Anine Bing. Consider this wool blazer something you can throw over just about anything.

Julia Gessler travelled to Sydney with COS to discover the brand’s new capsule collection.

More on fashion

The latest news, in-depth profiles and fascinating features.

Take a hike: Outdoor enthusiasts share tramping gear recommendations. The right gear can make any trek an unforgettable experience.

Dan Ahwa: What the NFL’s ‘tunnel’ fashion tells us about sports and style. Sorry, Fashion Week, the real runway was through a tunnel at a sports event.

Who knew recycling could look so good? NZ designers making art from off-cuts. Meet the designers attempting to stitch together a new future for circular fashion.

My style: Rising designer Laurence Sabrine on Vivienne Westwood and Folklore. The Pōneke-based creative chats family treasures, Hannah Montana and wearing things wrong.

Unlock this article and all our Viva Premium content by subscribing to 

Share this article: