How To Wear One Suit For Every Season: A Guide To Layering, Fabrics And Accessories

Man wearing suit in rain

As we transition from one season to the next, you might be wondering how you can continue wearing the suits that you've been sporting all summer to those upcoming autumn and winter events.

After all, you've invested in your formalwear and taken time to find pieces you love – so you don't want to have to pack them away for half of the year. Luckily, with just a few simple styling changes you can make your suit work for any time of year, and get the most out of your most-loved formal pieces. Read on to find out how to style one suit for all seasons.


The key to a successful all-weather wardrobe, the first thing to think about is layering. Consider the cut, colour, and fabric of your suits, and how you might add and remove layers seasonally in a stylish way.

Styling your suit for an autumn or winter event? Add sophistication and warmth to your two-piece suit by incorporating a waistcoat. Either opt for something that matches your suit, or go for a contrasting colour, pattern or fabric – this can really elevate your look. Having a reliable rotation of different waistcoats to pair with your suit can add a freshness to every outfit and extend the life of your favourite suit.

Got a winter wedding or a Christmas party to attend? A t-shirt layered under a polo-neck knit, topped off with your blazer makes for elegant yet practical style for cold-weather dress codes. Invest in a sleek wool coat for a final flourish that'll keep you warm and sophisticated.

Switch out fabrics

Create diversity in your wardrobe by adding formal garments in a variety of materials, like white shirts in various fabric weights. Having a host of different interchangeable fabrics means you can make your suit work for every season, whether you need to stay warm or cool down.

To keep cool in warmer weather, swap your classic shirt for a linen version. Then, when winter rolls around you could switch your linen shirt for a smart-casual chambray shirt, giving you the dimension of denim in a lightweight construction that's warm and comfortable.

Having a variety of waistcoats in different fabrics will take your transitional formal style to the next level. Ensure your waistcoat selection spans the full spectrum from linens to tweeds, and you'll be ready to layer up for any occasion.

If you've been wearing your smart-casual suits with a t-shirt during spring and summer, go for a knitted polo shirt as the weather gets colder – choose 100% cotton for the same comfort and breathability as your t-shirts, but with a thicker knitted construction.

Colours and Patterns

For style that outshines seasonal trends, classic colourways are your best friend. Think pale blue, white, pink and black shirts, and timeless shoes like black Oxfords or Derbys and tan-coloured brogues. Taking the weather into consideration, remember that dark colours soak up sunlight and heat, and lighter colours reflect it.

When it comes to patterns, you can't go wrong with florals to compliment your suit. Floral shirts come in a huge variety of colours, prints and cuts, perfect for pairing with any kind of suit. Floral ties are a classic, too, as are paisley-printed and striped ties that add a touch of elegance to any look.

Extra Tips

To keep your suit ready for year-round wear, have a seasonal rotation of accessories on hand to incorporate into your outfit and make it work for any event, dress code or weather. Beyond simple swaps like a burgundy tie for winter and pale pink for summer, add in a formal scarf and heritage-inspired hat for refined style that keeps you warm and looking smart.

Don't forget about those inevitable rainy occasions! Always have a black umbrella on hand to stay looking sharp and dry. Speaking of weather, keep your formal footwear seasonal and you'll have a suit you can reach for throughout the year; choose sockless loafers or trainers in spring and summer, and sturdy dress shoes or boots in autumn and winter.