Menswear Fabrics: Hopsack

March 31st, 2015

Hopsack is one of my go-to fabrics in the Spring and Summer. It’s not technically a fabric, it’s a method of weaving a fabric (most often a lightweight wool). The “basket weave” texture, which comes in many different gages, creates a very unique feel to a tailored garment. Think of it like a Spring/Summer alternative to flannel or tweed.

Hopsack Pros

  • Very lightweight and breathable. Recommended to go unlined.
  • Natural wrinkle resistance due to woven texture.
  • Forgiving drape, easier to tailor.
  • The coarse texture creates a more casual, wearable garment.

Hopsack Cons

  • Does not insulate heat well.
  • Susceptible to snagging, due to the loose weave. This effect is worsened on larger gages.
  • Larger gages can also be more delicate.

Given how versatile and functional of a fabric it is, a good hopsack garment is surprisingly hard to find. Perhaps retailers shy away from the delicacy of the texture, although I’ve worn mine pretty hard. I’ve also never ironed any of them, even with traveling and all that.

I was recently searching through the archives for a specific photo and started to notice how often I wear my hopsack suit pieces. Rarely as full suits, though. Most often as separate trousers – hopsack makes for a very versatile and comfortable pant. I actually think the brown hopsack trousers might be the most featured garment in the history of the site.

With that said, here are some lightweight Spring looks to highlight the versatility of hopsack fabrics, especially in brown, especially as trousers.




















Thanks, as always, for reading.

Yours in style,

Dan Trepanier


Photography by Alex Crawford.

  • Logan

    Where did the navy coat/jacket (fashion novice here) come from? I’ve been wanting something like that for a while now.

  • ChrisD

    For summer weather, would you go with a wool(?) hopsack over a regular linen jacket?

  • Bo

    While I take issue with some of the quality of some of the profiles on this site and the fit of clothing on other guys pictured here, it seems to me like the best content (most wearable looks, best color/outfit combinations, etc.) always come from Dan — less waxed-mustache, poorly-made pinstripe suit-wearing blokes and more of this, please!

    • Juan Zara

      Agree 100% with this. Dan is what made The Style Blogger so great, and I know one must move on to greater things, but the personal approach the old website had felt so much more genuine. Variety is good, so long, though, as it follows the same rules that apply to one’s personal style.

      And again, style is personal and it’s true that a lot of the stuff that works for someone may not work for somebody else (that’s the point of featuring so many guests, I guess), but there has to be a common ground, some sort of principle that brings all the content together and to which every feature must adhere.

      I liked the old Style Blogger because I was tired of looking at photos of 6’3″ models with perfect bodies wearing skinny clothing a size too small for them in unrealistic situations (think SuitSupply circa “Shameless”.) I loved that it portrayed a “normal” dude (and, later, dudes) wearing well-fitting, right-sized, classic clothes in real-life situations.

      I loved the old 25 (+10) essentials list (and didn’t feel like it should have been updated,) the “real life dude” profiles (Dan’s real life friends DJ McDonald, Marwan Helal, Calvin Saunders, etc), the “Style Upgrade” series, the Giveaway contests and the dozens of WIWT challenges because they portrayed “real” people, not people from the “industry.” And I can’t relate to some of the new content because of this very reason, that is: I, like most readers, don’t work in #menswear, nor do I care for it, otherwise I would be discussing how to pair my $5k pindot Lanvin shirt with my paint-splattered chinos from Engineered Garments and my ridiculously short suit jacket in an innovative, never-done-before way on some internet forum.

      I love Dan’s idea of men’s clothing, and the way he dresses is what drove me, and a lot others like me, to follow this website religiously. The fact that most guests that were featured two to four years ago somehow shared Dan’s views on men’s clothes AND were, as I said before, “real-life-people”, made this all coherent, enjoyable, and most importantly, relatable.

      With that said, I understand the current setup is more profitable, as it tries to reach a bigger “audience”, and create more professional, magazine-level content. I just hope some of what made TSB so enjoyable is on its way back, and this doesn’t become GQ.

      Sorry for the rant, just my two cents.

  • TO

    This is exactly what’s been on my mind the last couple of weeks. After years of reading the site, and through my own experience I have come to realize that a little texture, especially on tailored clothing/suiting goes a long wear in terms of maximizing the number of ways you can presentably wear a garment.

    I was in for a Made-to-measure appointment with Suitsupply recently and they told me hopsack was not appropriate for trousers because the cross pattern is prone to getting worn out in stress areas such as the knees (versus other fabrics that have weaves in multiple directions). Because of this the only hopsack swatches (which were pretty fine guage) were available for jackets only.

    This left me disappointed of course, but I am hopeful that another custom route in Toronto may have some options. Do you have the fabric codes/mills of your favorite hopsack fabrics? Looking more for year-round as opposed to spring/summer and wanting to start with navy or mid-grey.

    • Maxim Harper

      Funny that you have such a similar story, just got a MTM hopsack sportcoat from SuitSupply on the way. A little finer fabric than I wanted but a worthy tradeoff given I had discount and didn’t need the trousers

      Wish they did a OTR Havana suit in mid-grey/navy in a slightly more coarse fabric for durability and resilience to the knee issues you pointed out. Though given hopsacks versatility breaking the suit into separates should be fine, so the trouser wear issue isn’t so bad.

      Luxire have some VBC fabrics in right now that are currently marked down for promo if you’re not opposed to online ordering. On Styleforum it seems that sending in a current well fitting jacket yields great results, no affiliation just I see them doing great work.

      • TO

        How did you get a discount with them??

        • Maxim Harper

          I helped rectify some misinformation between their site and stores they’d not spotted and kindly gave my discount to restore my satisfaction. Don’t think it was entirely necessary, but can’t turn down a MTM jacket at OTR prices.

  • Bryan S

    Love the texture a good hopsack brings. I think Dan’s tobacco hopsack suit is one of my favorite suits featured on the site.

  • Miguel

    Great post Dan, always learning something new on the site.
    I’ve learned so much that whenever I’m buying a suit or jacket, I check the label and if I find this words polyester/viscose, I’ll walk away.

  • JArthur

    Very helpful post, I have a hard time choosing which fabric weaves are suitable for each season.

  • Antwan

    Hey Dan,

    Where can I find a quality hopsack suit? I’ve been looking around and it seems virtually impossible to find one that I like. great post by the way the tan hopsack off whit pants combo is fire!!

    • cam

      go custom, its worth it

      • Antwan Davis

        Custom does seem like the route I need to go thanks Cam

    • Juan Zara

      Just got an unbelievable wool hopsack sportcoat by Belvest. Not sure how readily available it is overseas, and it can be pretty expensive for RTW, but it’s among the best ready-to-wear labels out there, and their S/S collections always feature some awesome hopsack pieces.

      Otherwise, if you can afford MTM or bespoke, Carlo Barbera carries the best 7-8 oz hopsack wool fabrics.

      • Antwan Davis

        Yea I was thinking about going the bespoke route I’ll have to check out Carlo Barbera I’ve heard his name come up in a few blogs I think it’s time to actually take him serious. Thanks Juan

    • Dominic

      Gant Rugger