Traditionally, as the name suggests, a Hacking Jacket was a tweed jacket worn for riding. The key features of today’s Hacking Jackets remain unchanged and all owe their roots to maintaining a stylish appearance in the saddle.
The lapels on a Hacking Jacket meet mid-chest, the jacket is lightly tailored at the waist and there are three buttons. The origins of these features are functional and stylistic. All contribute to a secure, semi-fitted jacket that allows for free movement in the saddle. A longer lapel and any less than three buttons, and the jacket would be likely to gape.
A Hacking Jacket is traditionally cut a little longer, with a long single vent at the back. Again this is designed to create a more refined silhouette in the saddle. The single vent opens over the saddleback and the front panels sit neatly on the thigh. For the contemporary wearer the effect is equally flattering, creating as it does an elongated, elegant line.
The pockets are slanted on a Hacking Jacket to make it easier for a rider to access them in a seated position. Today they retain this heritage feature and you will also find an additional ticket pocket on a Hacking Jacket, just above the right pocket and slightly smaller in size.
Inside, a good quality Hacking Jacket should be fully lined and provide ample pockets for what would have been sporting needs but today will no doubt include a mobile phone.
The greatest change to Hacking Jackets in recent years has been the vivacity of the cloth and the increasingly tapered line of the cut. The Bladen Hacking Jackets are the finest 100% wool tweed cloth. The vibrant colours used in contemporary Bladen tweeds have brought new life to a heritage piece. Blue, pink and heather overchecks on pale grassy tweeds bring a fresh sophistication to the Hacking Jacket.
All Bladen Hacking Jackets are fully lined in rich jewel like shades of silk satin and discreetly labeled with Bladen branding: a small private reminder to the wearer alone of the integrity of your tweed jacket.
A Tweed Jacket will last a lifetime and is the greatest investment you can make for your wardrobe. And remember this is a jacket designed for a hard-wearing sporting life, don’t imprison it in your wardrobe and save it for special occasions. Take it out. Run it hard. A Tweed Jacket should be the hardest working item you own.
Coming up: The companion post – The Origins of The Sports Jacket.
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