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I'm looking to invest in some new sweaters, and sweater vests. What are the best companies or brands that you would recommend ?

I don't know much about what would be a good high end or a poor low end sweater or vest.

I was thinking of playing it safe and simply shopping at places that are well known for the their shirts and suits (britoni, kiton or Turnbull and Asser or Charvet.....if these companies make them). Though I do know that excellence in one, is not guarantee of excellence in another.

Also, is there a such thing as a made to measure or bespoke sweater or sweater vest ?

Is there a premier or general consensus on the best company or brand on sweaters and sweater vests ?

I would be most greatful for any assistance or advice that can be provided.
 

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The sleeveless sweater...
IMHO, a perfectly serviceable garment, when worn under a sportcoat.

A bit more questionable otherwise, but if you keep the frequency low enough that it doesn't become a sort of personal trademark,* you're okay.

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*cf: Neal Schweiber; Will "you wear more vests than the cast of Blossom" Shuester.
 

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I'm quite a fan of the sweater vest or, as MikeDT correctly describes it, the tank top.

I'm currently going through a cardigan/sweater/tank top phase for work as the office I work is not smart enough to wear jackets or suits but I like something to frame my ties.

It might be easier for us in the UK, as for such garments we can just head to Marks & Spencers...not sure they've travelled across the pond.
 

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The sleeveless sweater, better known in the UK as the tank top. IMO a garment best left in the 1970s.
That's not correct at all. A sleeveless sweater/jumper/pullover looks nothing like a tank top. For starters tank tops were a fashion fad not a piece of clothing per se in that they had very low cut necks, mostly rounded, sometimes V. Secondly they were always striped and/or multi-coloured and often quite heavy knits. A fashion item of the early 70s, like the maxi dress. The tank top disappeared early 80s but during the 80s was still worn ironically by some punks & by some bands.
A sold colour v-neck sleeveless jumper is not a tank top & bears no resemblance whatsoever to any tank top I've ever seen.
 

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Oh god, when I hear tank top, the first thing I think of, is whats popularly called "the wife beater"......I don't even wear those underneath my shirts.
The current US usage of tank top refers to a round neck vest for both sexes I know. But in the UK in the 70s it was a knitted fashion item, low cut neck, colourful, always patterned. sometimes the neck was so low you'd see at least 3 buttons of the shirt below the collar button.
 

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Research (of a particularly lazy sort) reveals that the meaning of "tank top" is sufficiently different between the UK and the US that Wikipedia has disambiguation page to separate them into two different articles.

In the US, it's something ordinarily worn by (a) women, (b) lifeguards and (c) low-lifes. In the latter incarnation, it's also sometimes called a "wife beater" or an "A top" (leaving to the listener the determination of what the "A" stands for).
 

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A sweater vest (that's the correct name) is a sleeveless sweater. They are great for wear with a sport jacket or a sport shirt. Good for golf, etc.



Sweater Vest a sleeveless, waist length sweater in either cardigan or pullover style. (from The Encyclopedia of Men's Clothes)
 

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At the lower end there is always Brooks Brothers...I am fond of their argyle wool offerings for fall and winter...I really like the style of many of the Black Fleece line too.

Face Suit trousers Head Shirt Dress shirt
 

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I'm looking to invest in some new sweaters, and sweater vests. What are the best companies or brands that you would recommend ?
I am wearing a Shetland argyle sweater vest as I type this. This particular item was aquired from LL Bean, and much to my surprise, proved to be a very nice sweater at an inexpensive price. Recent past Bean sweaters have been dreadful. They also have solid lambswool sweaters and sweater vests that look promising, as well as authentic Irish Aran sweaters in three styles, and sweaters from Norway that I also expect are decent. If you don't mind not spending a lot of money, you might consider one that I've mentioned.

The world of sweaters is huge. Other than member JamGood who I've not seen in a while, I can't think of anyone with a range of knowledge here to do the subject justice.

You might wish to be a little more specific about your preferences and intended uses as your question covers everything from outer garments suitable for near zero temperatures, to items that can be worn on a warm summer day. Sweater vests can have buttons, or not. Do you want wool? If so, what sort? Sheatland wool such as I'm now wearing is quite warm. Flat knit merino much less so, lambswool a bit in the middle. How about Cashmere? Camel hair? Cotton? Linen? Each can have its place.

As a generality the best sweaters come from Scotland. Italy also makes fine knits that tend to be lighter.
 

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I can't think of anyone with a range of knowledge here to do the subject justice.
Yeah, that was kind of my reaction, and what made me shy away from trying to answer the OP's original question. And the general topic of sweaters covers such a variety that a person who does know enough to do the subject justice is probably going to wind up sounding like Bubba Blue talking about shrimp.
 

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At the lower end there is always Brooks Brothers.
I don't consider their sweaters lower end. I quite like their merino wool sweaters, especially in terms of how they fit me. Of course, sweaters will fit everyone differently, so I can't vouch for them along those lines.

I will say that the two BB merino wool sweaters I own receive ongoing compliments and look as new today as they did when I started wearing them years ago, whereas a lot of my other sweaters seem to show sign of wear and tear over time. The only thing I don't like about the BB sweaters I own is that the waist is elasticized, but most other makers also do this.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I am wearing a Shetland argyle sweater vest as I type this. This particular item was aquired from LL Bean, and much to my surprise, proved to be a very nice sweater at an inexpensive price. Recent past Bean sweaters have been dreadful. They also have solid lambswool sweaters and sweater vests that look promising, as well as authentic Irish Aran sweaters in three styles, and sweaters from Norway that I also expect are decent. If you don't mind not spending a lot of money, you might consider one that I've mentioned.

The world of sweaters is huge. Other than member JamGood who I've not seen in a while, I can't think of anyone with a range of knowledge here to do the subject justice.

You might wish to be a little more specific about your preferences and intended uses as your question covers everything from outer garments suitable for near zero temperatures, to items that can be worn on a warm summer day. Sweater vests can have buttons, or not. Do you want wool? If so, what sort? Sheatland wool such as I'm now wearing is quite warm. Flat knit merino much less so, lambswool a bit in the middle. How about Cashmere? Camel hair? Cotton? Linen? Each can have its place.

As a generality the best sweaters come from Scotland. Italy also makes fine knits that tend to be lighter.
No buttons, outside of that, no real preference. I can't say, because I don't know if one material is better then another for sweaters or sweater vests, my opinions are pretty much a blank slate. Sometimes I'd simply wear it over a dress shirt or something, or underneath a blazer or sports coat, but I haven't settled on anything yet. My lack of expertise, and knowledge here, leaves me very much open to any ideas, on both materials, and companies and/or brands.
 

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No buttons, outside of that, no real preference. I can't say, because I don't know if one material is better then another for sweaters or sweater vests, my opinions are pretty much a blank slate. Sometimes I'd simply wear it over a dress shirt or something, or underneath a blazer or sports coat, but I haven't settled on anything yet. My lack of expertise, and knowledge here, leaves me very much open to any ideas, on both materials, and companies and/or brands.
O'Connell's is a retailer of traditional American style. Meaning, perhaps ironically, that virtually all its knitwear comes from Scotland, as has the best knitwear worn by generations of Americans. The quality is very good. The prices are fair.

Lambswool is versatile. It is quite warm and very soft. It can be a little delicate. This knit is available as cardigans, V-necks, sleeveless V-necks, and sleeveless cardigans. If you don't want buttons, you don't want cardigans. Either V-neck can work under a jacket, but I find the sleeveless version more comfortable and a better fit. While I know you don't want buttons, at least consider their sleeveless cardigan anyway. There's are beautifully made and provide a dressier appearance under a jacket, much like a vest/waistcoat. It could even be worn with a suit.

They also have great Shetland pullovers. Shetland wool is crispy and springy and warm. Best over a shirt as an outer layer, or under a casual coat. Tends to be a little too bulky under a sport jacket unless the jacket runs very large. Great, cozy, handsome sweaters.

Then there's cashmere. Nothing warmer, nothing softer. But a very delicate fiber.

https://shop.oconnellsclothing.com/knitwear_sweaters.php
 
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