What are Unlined and Unstructured Jackets?

In short you could say that Unlined or Unstructured jackets are the most natural fitting and draping jackets.

Before we go into the benefits of an unstructured jacket, we need to do a short history lesson first. After WW2 the majority of men would wear a suit because they had to. Alongside that we have seen men who aspired to create their own success and businesses which led to different play fields with new dress codes and possibilities to express yourself with your personal style. Actually we could see them as the contemporary Dandy.   

However, before the cultural revolution of the 1960's men used to wear suits because they had to and because they liked to. Oddly enough, we're now coming full circle and man men (spearheaded by the millennial generation) are now wearing suits because we love the way they make us feel, look, and act. While our fathers may never understand this drive, our grandfathers certainly did, and wore their suits and sport coats for the same reason.


More often than not this is seen on lighter, summer-weight fabrics. Part of that is because lighter weights of wool and materials like linen are more prone to wrinkle in the first place, and another reason is because removing the lining allows the jacket to wear much cooler. Natural fibers like linen, cotton, and wool can breathe but this breath ability is obstructed by the satin lining, making even light-weight jackets wear much warmer in the summer.

Thankfully though, casual jackets are appropriate throughout the year and many men are making unstructured jackets from heavier materials like tweed and winter-weight wools. These casual winter jackets wear just as comfortably as their summer counterparts but still retain a bit more heat and keep with the seasonal propriety of each fabric.

One of the only downsides to an unlined jacket is that they're near impossible to find. One of the benefits of a lining is that it can hide the ugly-but-effective stitches that go on inside a suit. An unstructured jacket can't do that same thing, so the makers are required to spend more time and effort with stitches that both do the job and look good at the same time. For most off-the-rack makers, the demand isn't worth the extra cost. This does not count for genuine tailors. This means you can come in for a visit and tell us - with any material you choose - whether or not you want to unstructured your jacket. There are no limitations and you have the complete freedom to build your sport coat or suit as casual or formal as you'd like.

An Unlined/Unstructured, Fused, Semi Canvas or Full Floating Canvas construction for you?

De Oost Bespoke Tailoring is a house of craft and passion so we can tailor using several ways of construction. This is a short explanation about the 4 common methods used by Bespoke Tailors.


Full Canvassed Jackets

Traditionally, men’s suits were constructed with a layer of horsehair canvas underneath the wool fabric shell. This canvas holds the shape of the suit and keeps it from sagging or deforming, much like the foundation of a house keeps it upright. The canvas is cut to the jacket’s shape, then the wool is stitched to the canvas. Over time, as you wear the jacket, the canvas conforms to your body’s shape, creating an excellent fit.

The canvas lining allows the suit fabric to drape naturally, allowing a clean, well put-together look. It takes years of training and additional hours of handwork for a tailor to be able to craft this the correct way.

Half Canvassed Jackets

Between the two extremes (fused and full canvas) lies a compromise – the half-canvassed jacket. Half-canvassed jackets have canvas material running only through the chest and lapels of the coat. Past that point, the jacket is fused.

Half-canvassed jackets have several benefits. First, they generally have a lower price than a similar fully canvassed jacket. Less handcraft means a lower overall cost to you. And because the top half of the jacket is not fused you’ll not run into any bubbling problems as you might in a fused jacket. This adds to the lifespan of the garment. Finally, the canvassing provides the proper base for the jacket to drape naturally across your chest, rather than appearing stiff and lifeless as many fused jackets do.

Unlined - Unstructured Jackets

When your suits aren't just for business and formal occasions then having them tailored Unlined or Unstructured is a good option. It gives the wearer the most natural look and freedom of personal expression.

By removing the interior lining, shoulder pads, and the canvassing, the jacket wears more like a shirt than a suit coat. This allows for more movement - comfort, a more casual appearance, and a more natural silhouette for the wearer - all of which help bringing the jacket down to the less formal level of the wardrobe. More often than not it is seen on lighter, summer-weight fabrics. Part of it because lighter weights of wool and materials like cotton and linen are more prone to wrinkle in the first place, another reason is that by removing the lining it allows the jacket to wear much cooler. Natural fibers breath but this is obstructed by the satin lining, even a light-weight jacket with a full-canvas construction wears much warmer in the summer.

Deconstructed - Fused Jackets

Many suit manufacturers no longer use a canvas interlining in their jackets. Rather, a fusible interlining is glued to the wool shell of the suit. And while this does an adequate job of keeping a jacket’s shape, it often creates an unnatural stiffness in the jacket, making a fused jacket appear lifeless compared to a similar canvassed coat.

What is sometimes problematic with fused jackets is the fact that the glue degrades over time, or may come unstuck during the dry-cleaning/pressing process. Where the wool detaches from the fused backing, the fabric ripples around the chest and lapels, a phenomenon known as “bubbling.”

Differences: In the full canvas Jacket, you can see how the jacket is composed entirely of cloth and horsehair canvas. The fabric is stitched directly to the canvas. In a half-canvassed garment, fusible extends the entire length of the coat. However, the garment is stitched to the canvas material, assisting in the proper shaping and providing life to the coat. In the fused jacket all the way to the right, the fusible interlining is glued the entire length of the coat.

If you want to know what the best construction would be for your garments and your personal style needs/ideas? Then feel free to contacts us for personal advice.