A 90-Second History on Tweed
'Tis the season.
Tweed seems to be everywhere—from blazers to trousers to hunting caps.
But what is tweed, really? A fabric? A pattern? A state of mind?
We’ve got your answers. And 90 seconds from now, you’ll be an expert...
The Need for Tweed
In the early 1800s, tweed was born in Scotland as a rough-woven wool used for outerwear by hunters—because it’s naturally thorn-proof and moisture-wicking. By the Edwardian era, the weave had been refined and adopted by the upper classes as their country wear. This quickly led to the aspirational masses following suit, and a trend was born. With the recent resurgence of heritage menswear, tweed is as popular as ever.
The Tweeds to Know
Donegal is a bird’s-eye tweed made in Northern Ireland. Herringbone is the classic chevron-striped pattern woven on the Western Isles of Scotland. Houndstooth is a checkered weave with irregular squares that vaguely resemble jagged teeth.
How to Tweed
The classic article of tweed is the hunting jacket—or blazer. And you’d do fine with a blazer over a pair of wool trousers and an oxford cotton button-down. For the more adventurous—and literary-leaning—a three-piece tweed suit is the perfect accomplice on a crisp morning bike ride across campus. Or slip a bit of unexpected tweed into your regular routine with a cap, waistcoat or briefcase.