Barbour Bedale is one of the most iconic jackets in modern menswear history. In this post I take a look on the modern interpretation of this classic jacket. Jacket which is one of my personal favorite overcoats.The Barbour Bedale SL jacket was originally made exclusively to Japanese market but for a few years it has also been available through many European retailers.
My Barbour Bedale jacket with brown suit and orange scarf at Pitti Uomo 91.
Compared to the original Bedale jacket the SL version features slimmer and shorter silhouette. And a bit more contemporary cut in general. Like it's predecessor Bedale SL still features a 100% lightweight waxed cotton construction. In addition there is two-way zip front with storm flap, classic tartan lining, handwarmer pockets and a corduroy collar. In general you could say that the Bedale SL is a modern and youthful version of that classic Barbour.
Barbour Bedale SL - jacket for multiple purposes
The Bedale is definitely one of Barbour's so called signature wax jackets together with International and Beaufort. The Bedale was originally designed by Chairman Dame Margaret Barbour. It was introduced into the range in the first place in 1980. The idea for the jacket was to be lightweight, weatherproof and a bit shorter in length to be ideal for riding. From the start it featured two big bellow pockets, a large pull ring two way zip and corduroy collar. These features are still key elements of the model.
I bought my own Bedale SL jacket from Trunk Clothiers
in London a couple of years ago. I had been looking for casual jacket that could be combined with different kind of outfits. I had mostly passed all Barbour jackets as I felt the fit of almost all models they had in their selection at that time were too big and wide for my body and taste. I had seen pictures of Bedale SL and thought that might actually be a solution for my search. After I tried it on at Trunk Clothiers, the decision to buy was made pretty quickly.
Bedale with suit or sport coat
In principle, the Bedale SL as most of Barbour jackets is essentially casual. Some might say it is at its best when combined with denim, chunky knitwear and more robust footwear. But if you go and google you can find multiple examples where the jacket is combined with more dressed-up garments such as sport coat and cotton slacks (as Jake from the Armoury Honkong here
) or even with a suit (as Jeremy from the Armoury NYC here
). Even though I believe that kind of combinations will surely share opinions, I personally think that the Bedale SL jacket also work as part of more dressed-up combinations. Though I would not wear it for a business meeting but keep it as a part of more relaxed suit and sport coat-ensembles.
Bedale SL with seasonal textures
And then there is of course combinations in between the above mentioned fully casual or dressed-up settings. Pictures below are actually from last spring but they could also be from this week. The Bedale SL or the classic Bedale jacket is actually pretty much perfect choice for the kind of weather we've been having here in Helsinki for a while now. The weather is getting warmer but you still need something to keep you warm against the cold wind.
I don't often wear a tie without a suit or a sport coat. And when I do, I always opt for a knitted tie just like here. If you are for example heading to have brunch or lunch on a sunny Saturday, even a sport coat can in many occasions be "too much". In those cases you may want to try a combination of a nice cashmere cardigan and cotton or flannel slacks. And if you want to dress up the set a bit, at that point a knitted tie might be just the right choice. And in terms of jackets, for this kind of outfit the Bedale SL is actually one of the most suitable choices.
The Bedale jacket is at its best when you combine it casually with some denim and cosy knitwear.
Sum up - where to find Barbour Bedale SL
Earlier it was almost impossible to find the SL version of Bedale jacket from European market. Luckily that has changed. Nowadays there are multiple stores that carry the jacket in various colors. In my opinion, if you want your jacket to be as versatile as possible, go for the olive green or dark blue. If you want something a bit different, try the black version. That would be optimal combined with some black denim and light gray roll neck sweater for example. And for the record, if you like your jacket to fit a bit more loose, there is nothing wrong with the original version either. Here are at least few places to look for the Bedale SL.
- End Clothing
- Country Attire