How to Wear a Denim Jacket to Get the Most out of This Versatile Staple

May 9, 2018 by Dale Chong

If we’re being honest, there’s really nothing more versatile than a classic denim jacket. Whether you opt for an oversized boyfriend-style fit or prefer yours to be a fitted crop jacket, this is one piece you’ll wear forever—literally. After all, there’s a reason this versatile staple has been a crowd favorite since the late 1800s (yes, you read that right). We’ve come up with a few foolproof tips on how to wear a denim jacket (applicable for the warmer months of the year), whether you’re renting the jacket itself or spicing up one you own with trendy TK.

How to Wear a Denim Jacket with a Dress

When you’d prefer an outfit that doesn’t require a second thought, a one-piece outfit is perfect for this season. With the one-and-done nature of dresses, jumpsuits and rompers, they’re the easiest to rent to spruce up your jacket in seconds.

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JACKET: JASON WU GREY, DRESS: JOHN + JENN

One-and-Done Denim Jacket Outfits:

For an everyday look, reach for a knit dress to wear with that jean jacket for an outfit that’ll not only keep you comfortable throughout the day but also be an outfit combination that won’t get tired. Need a look for the evening? Opt for a dark-colored slip dress or something a little silkier to contrast the different materials. Keep the look from feeling too simple and style it with accessories such as layered necklaces or unique bracelet.

JACKET: N12H, DRESS: VINCE, BRACELET: LIZZIE FORTUNATO

If dresses aren’t really your thing, try a romper or jumpsuit. Whether it’s a lightweight romper or a sleek jumpsuit for an evening out, these will be the heroes of your outfits to come. Pull the look together with your jacket and you’ll be set to go.

JACKET: ELIZABETH AND JAMES, JUMPSUIT: AMANDA UPRICHARD, NECKLACE: SLATE & WILLOW

How to Wear a Denim Jacket to Work

Office-Appropriate Denim Jacket Outfit:

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SHIRT: CINQ À SEPT, PANTS: CARVEN

In the chance that you work in a more creative or casual environment and have a laid back dress code – or have a few casual Fridays coming up – jean jackets are the perfect way to finish off a look.

In this case, we recommend cropped styles to keep your look cropped and polished. However, if you want an even more casual approach, an oversized jean jacket will do just the trick. Try wearing a denim jacket with a button-down blouse and cropped trousers, or even with a cool silk shirtdress for when you need something with a bit more movement.

How to Wear a Denim Jacket in the Summer

When the heat of summer rolls in, the last thing you’ll want to think about is a jacket. But as the temperatures drop in the evening, you’ll want something to add on to get the right amount of coverage from the breeze.

Light and Breezy Denim Jacket Outfits:

JACKET: MINKPINK, BLOUSE: RACHEL ZOE, SHORTS: JOSIE NATORI

In the day, go for the classic white tee and shorts combo and top it off with a trendy, floral denim jacket that will give your outfit the cool-girl edge you’re looking for.

JACKET: J BRAND, TOP: WAVERLY GREY, SKIRT: TANYA TAYLOR

If you’re in the mood to take your jacket out for the night, try a fitted or cropped light-colored denim jacket to wear with your floral skirt outfit.

How to Wear a Denim Jacket on Denim

Canadian Tuxedo Denim Jacket Outfits:

JACKET: VEDA, SKIRT: VEDA, TOTE: SEE BY CHLOE

The Canadian Tuxedo may have once been a taboo outfit, but it seems that women all around are loving the double denim look more and more. Whether you choose to wear a denim jacket over a denim skirt or shorts or want to wear a pair of high-waist vintage jeans for a fashion-girl uniform, the denim on denim look isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.

And let’s be real, coordinating your jean jacket to your bottoms has never looked chicer. For an elegant look, try wearing your pieces in matching washes paired with a black top. Or, give your outfit some visual texture with varying shades of blue. If you want to really take your love for  denim to the next level, wear a chambray shirt.

JACKET: VINCE, TOP: TRINA TURK, JEANS: CITIZENS OF HUMANITY

How to Wear a Colored Denim Jacket

If the latest Spring 2018 pieces have shown us anything, unconventional denim is on the rise, especially colored denim. Sure, we love the classic shades, but if you’ve never considered a vibrant piece like a red jean jacket, now is the time. For the moments when you’re feeling bold, rent this colorful spring trend to amp things up.

Vibrant Denim Jacket Outfit:

JACKET: J BRAND, TEE: JOIE, JEANS: CURRENT/ELLIOT, EARRINGS: EDDIE BORGO

Let your bright jacket be the primary focus of your ensemble and style it with neutral bottoms, such as a pair of blue, black or white jeans. Or, layer it over a simple mini skirt and a graphic tee. Complement the color with gold or silver jewelry to pull it all together.

There you have it—the options for styling a denim jacket are truly infinite. This style staple will go with anything you choose to wear, whether it’s for a casual spring wedding or a hot summer day. Experiment with these ideas, and then show us how you’re wearing it IRL with #MyRTR.