On trend

Bomber jackets for civilians

PHOTOS: FRED PERRY, M-WANTED, ZARA, COS, CLUB MONACO

Why you should wear them

For Spring 2016, menswear designers for labels such as Salvatore Ferragamo, Bottega Veneta and Giorgio Armani updated the functional classic bomber with different materials such as cotton and polyester and in a variety of colours and patterns.

For example, French-Italian label Moncler's Gamme Bleu Spring 2016 collection, designed by American fashion designer Thom Browne, featured a bright candyman- striped version with a red collar and lapel. Italian label Diesel Black Gold put extra-long sleeves on its bomber jackets. And Gucci's reversible silk bomber jacket was an equal mix of sporty and botanical wallpaper.

The bomber jacket was originally meant for World War I military pilots, made in leather with an inner lining for extra warmth. It has since seeped into popular culture - celebrities such as American singer Pharrell Williams and music producer Mark Ronson have been spotted in them on numerous occasions.How to wear them

• Choose your fit: The original bomber jacket is meant to be oversized to accommodate a pilot's military equipment, but fashion labels offer a wider variety with different cuts and styles.

Whether you choose an oversized or slim-fit bomber, the rule of thumb is to make sure your lower half is as slim, or slimmer, so that your look will be proportionately balanced.

• An alternative to the blazer: A tailored and slim-fit bomber can work as an alternative to the blazer for casual Fridays, provided it is in a solid colour without embellishments. Zip it up partially to show off your tie.

• Keep it light: There is no need for a leather bomber in Singapore's humid weather. Opt for lighter, breathable materials such as silk and cotton.

• Think modern, not military: It may have been created for military wear, but it does not mean you have to wear it with your army boots or pants.

Try pairing it with interesting bottoms, such as drop-crotch pants or even tailored pants.

Here are some picks:

1. Tennis olive green bomber, $439, from Fred Perry

Inject some colour into your wardrobe without going over the top. Wear this with lighter-coloured bottoms - black may be too severe.

2. Acid-washed cotton jacket with zip print, $189.90, from M-Wanted at Sabrinagoh Capitol Piazza

The zipper print may look busy, but the jacket is easy to pull off as long as you keep the rest of your outfit monochromatic.

3. Red bomber jacket, $79.90, from Zara

Layer a white T-shirt underneath this red jacket, with tan chinos and white shoes.

4. Khaki green cotton zip-up jacket, $290, from Cos

A basic bomber jacket in a neutral colour that goes with anything.

5. Marled bonded jacket, $340, from Club Monaco

In between a chunky knit cardigan and bomber jacket, this grey jacket can be worn with tapered pants and a tie to the office on dress-down Fridays.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 25, 2016, with the headline 'Bomber jackets for civilians'. Print Edition | Subscribe