Long gilets: A safe choice for all seasons  

(Photo:www.marieprom.co.uk/cocktail-dresses)Long vests called “long gilets” are gaining popularity. They seem to be particularly useful at the turn of the season to help cope with changing temperatures. They wrap the waist and belly, so they’re also great for people who are conscious of their shape.

Meaning vest in French, various “gilet” designs are on sale in varying lengths – from those ending at the waist to those that dip below the knees.

A large selection of long gilets are available at the Tomorrowland Shibuya main store in Tokyo, a fashion specialty boutique that sells selected products from various brands.

For a casual look, the store recommends a fluffy mohair-style long gilet that goes for ¥64,000 plus tax. The bright-gray piece features a shawl collar, slits in both sides and a hem that extends past the hips.

The store also offers a knee-length piece that resembles a sleeveless coat with a collar and pockets, priced at ¥38,000 plus tax. Its decent, orderly image makes it suitable for commuting as well as the office.

Satoko Naka, a worker at the store, says long gilets give completely different impressions depending on the material.

“They can be worn with a T-shirt when it’s hot,” Naka said. “During cooler autumn weather, you could wear them on top of a jacket. They can be worn for many months throughout the year.”

Long gilets sold at DoClasse’s store in Yurakucho, Tokyo, are made of smooth materials. Reaching below the knees, they eschew collars, lapels and buttons for simple designs. Available in five sizes, they come in gray or black and sell for ¥14,900 plus tax.

The Yurakucho store also stocks a long gilet that has drapes on the right and left front panels. Made of soft material, the piece is just above knee-length and can be worn like a cardigan. It can be hand-washed at home, and will probably come in handy as the temperatures change since it’s easy to take on and off. The one-size-fits-all vest comes in black or gray for ¥6,900 plus tax.

“[Long gilets] are trendy fashion items that pair well with women in their 40s and 50s [as well as younger women],” said Yuki Nishida, an employee in charge at the company.

According to fashion adviser Rinka Miyoshi, people 155 centimeters tall and shorter who wear long gilets that go below the knee often give a heavy impression. Miyoshi recommends they choose pieces that are no longer than the length of their coats, considering they might wear such vests under their coats.

Miyoshi said it’s a safe bet to wear long gilets with slimmer pants or tight skirts. For wide pants, go for ones with materials that don’t flare out at the bottom. For those who are conscious of their waist and belly, the fashion adviser recommends trying on a long gilet and using a full-body mirror to see if the body shape resembles the letter “I.”

“Wearing high-heeled shoes can help balance out your image as a whole,” Miyoshi said.Read more at:www.marieprom.co.uk/formal-dresses

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