This article is exclusively about morning coat fabrics. If you are interested in the pants, take a look at the article about morning trousers. In the early days of the morning coat, you would sometimes see an entire suit of Morning coat, trousers and waistcoat tailored in a lighter-colored plaid fabric. However, even back then, plain black morning coats were absolutely the standard and the fashion of patterned morning suits vanished rather quickly. By the beginning of the 20th century, almost all morning coats were made of charcoal or black cloth.
Marengo Fabric – Black With a Few White Threads
In Germany, many morning coats were tailored from Marengo cloth, a black woolen fabric with about 3% white thread that created a sophisticated, slightly mottled effect. Today, charcoal or black worsteds – sometimes with a subtle herringbone or twill pattern – prevail.
Worsteds, Cheviots & Herringbone
In the 1930’s, Oxford grey or black, worsteds, cheviots or even cashmere or vicuna fabrics in plain or fancy weaves were the preferred fabrics.
Starting in the 1940’s, the herringbone weave gained in popularity.
Morning Coat in Herringbone Fabric
Today, almost all new morning coats are by default tailored in a black or charcoal plain or herringbone worsted wool fabric. The average customer today demands very lightweight cloth and this trend also affects morning wear fabrics. Considering that most events that require formal day wear, like horse races, weddings and Royal garden parties, take place during the warmer months of the year, this seems to be the way to go. However, these fabrics can be rather flimsy and tightly woven. In combination with a fused interlining, and a double breasted waistcoat, these lightweight formal day wear ensembles are almost guaranteed to make you sweat.
A heavier fabric, on the other hand, will drape more handsomely and resist wrinkling better. Also, a sewn canvas will increase the breathability of your garment and in combination with a open weave fresco wool fabric, you should be cooler even on warm summer days.
On occasion, you will find morning coats in navy or other colors in poor quality – do yourself a favor and skip that altogether.
The morning suit is usually worn in mid-grey, but we will dedicate an individual article to this particular morning dress ensemble.
Below you will find various pictures of different morning coat fabrics.