A Suit and a Turtleneck..a not so American Love Story

Wool and Cashmere Turtleneck by Lands End | Wool & Linen Suit by HM | Loafers by Robert Wayne| Silk Pocket Square unknown (I wore it on my wedding day and hopefully will pass it down one day)|

A few things to speak about before going any further:

  • Funky Llama wine is great and very inexpensive (BYOB SUSHI).
  • My suit is Linen and Wool so those wrinkles are natural, they don’t imply an ill fitted garment.
  • It was 50 degrees out today, so I went sockless. Yup. I did it and I can not wait for real spring weather. The snow next to me has been there for 2 months.

If you have ever looked at pictures of European men in the colder months of the year, you will see them wearing suits with turtlenecks (and looking great at the same time). This look is one that you will almost never see an American male attempting to pull off without feeling a bit out of place. Take a look through some of your parents photo albums from the 1970s, I can guarantee that you will see your dad and his boys with wide lapel blazers and turtleneck sweaters. I am not telling you all to go super 70s but, there is some inspiration in their look.

Black Cotton Trench by CB United

Pre-Sushi Dinner at Bong Jung Collegeville




















Understanding that the turtleneck sweater can may become the standout piece of this outfit, I think it is best to tone it down with a rather neutral color. Going with grey, black, blue or beige would be the best way to start if you are planning to it down with a suit. This year’s trend with turtleneck sweaters has gone chunky with the fisherman’s style sweater that you would not pair with suit.

This look translates well on maybe a 3rd date to a nice restaurant or a casual Friday at work when you know you will be headed out for drinks afterward. Very understated this look says to me, “I know it’s a little chilly, but, I like to switch my style up without sticking to the norm.” Give the turtleneck sweater and suit look a chance before the weather breaks above 55 Degrees within the next few weeks. Remember wear your clothes confidently above all else.


Tags: , , , ,

Categories: Men's Style, Style Tip, Sweater

Author:Sabir M. Peele

Founder & Creative Director of menswear style & lifestyle blog Sabir serves as an independent brand consulting working with brands like GQ, AskMen, Indochino & Z Zegna (among others). Selected as #GQFall Best Dressed in 2013 & one of Esquire Magazine Best Dressed Real Men in America in 2010. Follow @MensStylePro on Instagram/Facebook/Twitter. Email with your inquiries.

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9 Comments on “A Suit and a Turtleneck..a not so American Love Story”

  1. February 14, 2011 at 6:14 AM #

    good combo. turtlenecks are back

    • February 14, 2011 at 4:07 PM #


      Thanks. I’ve enjoyed them much this year.



  2. February 14, 2011 at 6:20 AM #

    Ive done the turtleneck and suit for a bit. Turtlenecks are hard to come by. I guess I need more catalogs to order from. As always you make it seem effortless. Which I’m sure for you, it is.

    Mr. Goodwill Hunting

    • February 14, 2011 at 4:08 PM #

      Mr.Goodwill Hunting,

      I just to keep my style pretty effortless once the outfit has been put on. I am looking out for your next post you told me about.

  3. Odie
    February 15, 2011 at 5:18 PM #

    Turtlenecks are back?! I thought classics never went out of style.

    • February 15, 2011 at 5:38 PM #

      Hi Odie,

      I really feel that there has been a resurgence of the turtleneck sweater in American men’s style over the past few years. I use to wear them when I was younger and I hated them until I was about 16 and then they were a staple in my wardrobe.



  4. diggdis
    February 15, 2011 at 7:30 PM #

    Didn’t know the American man hardly wore a suit with a turtle neck these days. I thought it would be a common look since there are many American-Italians, but then again I guess it also depends on where you live. It’ll probably be more common in a city like New York I suppose.

    Another good post, enjoyed it a lot.

  5. February 22, 2011 at 10:53 PM #


    This is great look on you, I especially like for the sweater fits close around the neck. With your build it doesn’t come off as bulky at all. I have an olive green one I love but the bulkiness around the neck almost makes me give it away simply because I don’t feel 100% confident in it.

    Can you tell me more about the sweater – when did lands end make it? Basically, where can it be found today.

    Thank you,


    • February 22, 2011 at 11:14 PM #

      Hi Antonio,

      Thanks for the comment. This Lands End Turtleneck Sweater is still available by clicking here . The fit is great and the neck is not bulky which works well in a suited matter. I believe that it was released this year.

      Thanks for reading,


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