Oi Polloi

Pica~Picks: Overshirts

Published: Fri Feb 17 2017

A bit more substantial than a normal shirt, but not quite as bulky as a full-blown jacket — the overshirt (or shacket, as it’s known to some), is a particularly useful garment.

These things are prime for this time of year when you need a few layers on… and are even better on those summer nights when you need something light to keep the gentle evening breeze from your forearms.

With that in mind, here are a few of our favourites.

Honourable mentions go to Stone Island (whose entrants in the category sold out too fast) and Schnaydermans (who we should be getting some stuff off in the next week or so).

Starting things off, we’ve got this ripstop number from Manastash. This one is definitely more shirt than jacket, but with press studs down the front and those sneaky hand pockets in the side-seams, we reckon this counts as ‘an overshirt’. As they say… pockets maketh the overshirt.

…although saying that — this one from Norse Projects has only got one pocket. Weird eh? Anyway, it’s made from really light, crisp fabric which makes it good for when you need another layer, but don’t necessarily want to be smothered in a massive chunk of military thickness cotton twill.


And now for something completely different. Imagine the setting… a sleepy Mediterranean town… you spend your days making humble urns for passing noblemen… the sun shines brightly… olive oil… flagons of wine… dancing with the blacksmith’s daughter under the moonlight as an old shepherd strums acoustic guitar so hard his calloused fingers start to bleed onto the dusty floor… AND THIS SMOCK FROM ARMOR-LUX.

Yep, this thing looks like something out of an old photograph, but by some twist of fate, it still fits in nicely with modern life (and weird Mediterranean daydreams).

Universal Works are the overlords of the overshirt, and have been making heavy cotton shackets for years. Their Bakers Jacket is a modern day classic that should not be overlooked, but these here Military Workshirts are decent too. There’s a definite 70s US army look to these, but they’re a fair bit smarter than anything you’d find in the army surplus shop.

And for something similar but different, the Japanese workwear wonder-weavers at orSlow also make some pretty special military shirts.  

And finally, we come to the Roscoff Popover Shirt from Arpenteur. Washed denim… linen… a funny little pocket… another inside pocket… this is a true thinking man’s overshirt. And what do we think? We think it’s ace.

We’re also big fans of those Travail Jackets this lot do. Similar aura, just a few more pockets.

And that’s it. Hopefully this was some use to you, and we apologise wholeheartedly if it wasn’t. Thanks for reading.

Get yourself an overshirt here.