On My Style Radar: Chore Jackets

Chore jackets in a variety of colors and cuts. Details at une femme d'un certain age.Originally inspired by French workers’ jackets, the “chore” jacket has come into its own. This style is more casual than a blazer or “lady jacket,” and less rugged than a traditional denim jacket. Many of these styles have a boxy fit, some are a little more A-line. They can be a great way to add a bit of structure to a casual look without feeling too “trussed up.”

Everlane Chore Jacket in Spanish Clay. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

Above: this one is budget-friendly, also offered in navy and bone, but this “Spanish Clay” color will jazz up your neutrals. Offered in sizes XS to XL.

Madewell denim chore jacket with patch pockets. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

This one feels both Old School classic and modern at the same time. Offered up to size XXL.

O'Neill La Seine chore jacket in olive. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

This style in a soft olive color falls a bit longer, and keeps details to a minimum, which I like.

REJINA PYO leopard print chore jacket. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

Did someone say, “leopard print?” This one is on the spendy side, but it’s a surprisingly neutral and understated option.

Alex Mill herringbone chore jacket in burnt honey color. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

This color is described as “burnt honey” and would look fabulous on those with warmer coloring. Here’s the same style in white.

Striped chore jacket from Sezane. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

Here’s a longer style with pinstripes

OAK plus-size chore jacket denim. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

This plus-size option doesn’t scrimp on the cool factor.

LL Bean women's denim chore jacket. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

Reviewers say this style is soft and comfortable. 
madewell stripe chore coat. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

And finally, the one that made me bite…offered up to size XXL this a fun option for Spring. The cut is more A-line, and the color is a subtle reddish-brown. The Small was a good fit for me.

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18 Comments

  1. Linda B Kerr
    March 19, 2019 / 3:47 am

    These jackets always bring to mind the famous fashion photographer Bill Cunningham. He always wore his French workman’s jacket. I found a pattern for one at a wonderful store in Chicago, Oak Fabrics, and some teal cotton/linen to make it in. It’s wonderful to work in, for either a casual day at work, or around the house. I love all the pockets. I find myself reaching for it all the time, and can see taking it traveling as well.
    Good feature!

  2. Adele
    March 19, 2019 / 3:59 am

    I love this style, especially in a swingy, A-line cut, but I find the length can be troublesome. Short can be super cute, and longer is flattering on me, but the in-between length (which is most common) tends to be widest at my widest point, and isn’t a good look for me.

    • March 28, 2019 / 2:24 pm

      You might wear a longer sweater than the jacket, it can work.

  3. Sara
    March 19, 2019 / 4:42 am

    How I agree with Adele!
    These are just at the wrong length for me and combined with the collar which always looks frumpy on me, it is a style for me to sidestep. I do think it would be a strange world if we all liked the same thing, so do carry on bringing us all kinds of different, Susan. Right at the moment, we can all do with appreciating differences, in all walks of life and wherever we are in the world.

  4. March 19, 2019 / 4:48 am

    Linda, can you share the pattern? I love Oak Fabrics too.

    • Linda Boardman Kerr
      March 20, 2019 / 8:59 am

      Karen, it was the Foreman jacket.

  5. March 19, 2019 / 5:21 am

    I love those, and love practical pockets. Haven’t seen them much in shops here yet. The soft olive is beautiful. But I prefer denim in dark washes; the light ones look too faded to my eye, but I realise that this depends on climate and custom.

  6. Lee Rosenthall
    March 19, 2019 / 6:06 am

    This is one of my favorite styles too, although somehow I missed it had a name all these years, so thank you for that! As with denim jackets, I do find lengths problematic. Unlike so many dealing with short torsos, I have a long one in proportion to the rest of my body, so where it hits is key, but I just love the Everlane and Madewell ones you’re showing here. I already had my eye on that striped one from an earlier post of yours, I think. Can’t wait to see you model it! And I just dug out an old linen/cotton one in a nice shade of dark olive I bought years ago when my boys were little (they’re now 21 and 23) that I haven’t worn a lot in recent years, but suddenly it looks just right. 🙂

  7. Rondi
    March 19, 2019 / 6:34 am

    Love these jackets! I am glad to see the shorter lengths. They have a lighter look as opposed to the heavy looking longer layers. And such pretty color choices! I, also, have not heard the term chore jacket. I have learned something new already this morning!

  8. Kathy W
    March 19, 2019 / 8:19 am

    So funny that you posted on Chore Jackets today. Right after reading your post, I opened an email to find a linen workwear jacket featured at fabrics-store.com, in case there is anyone up for making their own jacket. The teak color is gorgeous. I wish this was a style that is flattering on me!
    blog.fabrics-store.com/2019/03/19/paola-workwear-jacket-tutorial/db

  9. Claudia
    March 19, 2019 / 8:22 am

    Found one at a flea market a couple years ago, brand new, $5.00, black. When I slipped it on the vendor said, Oh, I never thought of wearing that myself, it’s a man’s jacket. But she loved it on me! (I think she took the other one she had home for herself. It was canvas colored-I should have bough both!) It’s the best! And it feels surprisingly put together, with jeans, boots, a turtleneck and of course, a scarf.

  10. Lily
    March 19, 2019 / 8:30 am

    The jackets you feature are beautiful colors. The cut is not to my taste. I much prefer a more fitted, utility or jeans jacket.

  11. Mae
    March 19, 2019 / 9:19 am

    In response to Karen’s query, I don’t know if this is the pattern mentioned in Linda’s comments, but I’ve just made the Tello jacket from Pauline Alice patterns. Of course, when sewing it yourself you can adjust the length which seems to be a concern for some readers. The pattern is straight forward and well-drafted and follows the worker’s jacket style faithfully.

  12. Cathy D.
    March 19, 2019 / 1:23 pm

    I absolutely adore my LL Bean denim chore jacket. I had been looking for years for a longer denim jacket. This is not a “traditional” denim jacket, but it is denim. I love the fabric (very soft but with body), the color (medium blue – looks fabulous with dark denim jeans), and the cut (very slightly a-line). I’m a petite (5’2″) and this jacket does not come in petite. However, the regular length is perfect, and I roll the sleeves. I wish it came in other colors, but since it doesn’t I may try one of the other styles shown in this wonderful post. Thank you, Susan!

  13. March 19, 2019 / 3:56 pm

    Chore jacket evokes chores on a farm to me: often these jackets were worn by skilled workers and were tiny toolboxes. It strikes me as an odd translation.

  14. March 21, 2019 / 4:45 am

    I like the entire outfit on the plus size model. The longer jacket, fuller top, skinny jeans–an effortless–yet chic, look.

  15. Duchesse
    March 28, 2019 / 2:22 pm

    Ha! I have just written a post on this, not up yet… but different examples. They are very current and best of all most can be washed.

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