The Fashion Armour Your Need Right Now: The Utility Vest

03 May 2020
Fashion, The North Face, Zara, Carhart WIP, Louis Vuitton, 1017 Alyx 9SM, A Cold Wall x Diesel Red Tag, Menswear
Love it or hate it, the Virgil Abloh approved armour is here to stay

The utility vest for men is the gilet 2.0. The fisherman’s favourite has now become a fixture on the shoulders of stylish young men the world over.

Workwear has always played a big part in menswear. From the military (marching boots, officers coats and camouflage) shipping (pea coats, duffle coats and breton tops) to well, fishermen.

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That is correct. The utility vest is the latest piece of ‘workwear kit’ to be plucked from fashion obscurity and made famous. In 2020 a star is born and it’s got plenty of practical pockets.

Louis Vuitton, Dior, Juun J and Off-White have leant into the vest and it has become increasingly popular not just on the runway but also in the streets. The fact that they’ve also been seen on the backs of Kanye West, The Weeknd, Tyler The Creator and even Odell Beckham Jr. doesn’t hurt, either.

Stylish and practical? You had us at “pocket for your phone charger”.

The simplest way to pull-off a vest during the warmer weather is to throw it on over a plain tee – the choice of trousers is up to you. In slightly more chilly temperatures, layer it under a coat and over a jumper. It’ll add just the right amount of modernity without making the effort – isn’t that what getting dressed is all about?

The best utility vests to cop now:

A Cold Wall x Diesel Red Tag

A Cold Wall x Diesel Red Tag, $715 at Matchesfashion

Featuring classic details from both brands, Diesel’s denim heritage and A Cold Wall’s iconic asymmetrical zip, this vest is the guaranteed conversation starter you’re looking for.

1017 Alyx 9SM

1017 Alyx 9SM, $635 at Matchesfashion

This reworked meshed version is the perfect lightweight piece to throw over or wear under something. It features zips, buckles and pockets, the ultimate 1017 Alyx 9SM aesthetic piece.

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Louis Vuitton

$2830 at Louis Vuitton

Inspired by LV’s icon leather goods, this iteration of the classic Virgil Abloh silhouette features different sized 3D pockets – It’s the perfect style and function cross over piece.

Carhart WIP

Carhart WIP, $170 at Mr. Porter

Don’t be fooled by the understated design elements on this, what matters here is that it’s just as rugged as it looks sleek.


$80, Zara

Featuring key elements of utilitarian design namely zippers, pockets and buckles, this Zara vest is placed perfectly between design and practicality.

The North Face Black Series

The North Face Black Series, $620 at Matchesfashion

This waterproof North Face vest is perfect for that morning walk and grabbing a drink with the boys in the afternoon.