is a type of single breasted
related to a
Generally, it differs from a suit jacket
in that the buttons are usually metallic,
and the outer material generally more durable.
They occur most often in blue colors, but
blazers of other colors are not unheard
of. They are included often in
of civilian bodies, such as airlines, boys
yacht clubs, and private security organizations.
Looking at the classic blazer, the double-breasted
blue one with brass buttons, the conclusion
that the jacket is of military tradition
is rather obvious. Most say the name stems
HMS Blazer, a frigate, whose captain,
when faced with a visit to his ship by Queen
Victoria, decided to outfit his crew in
short double breasted jackets in navy blue
serge, with brass Royal Navy buttons. It
is said to have been modeled after the reefer
jacket of midshipmen. Apparently the Queen
was so smitten with the "uniform"
that it became the style. Today, the blazer
remains navy blue with brass buttons, although
variations can be had in black, tartan green
or even red. Colored and striped blazers
have been the style since the public school
days, and there is also a tale that the
red summer jackets of the oarsmen of the
Lady Margaret Boat Club, in Cambridge, were
said to look "ablaze" and began
a tradition which today is seen in single
breasted blazers at Henley Regatta.
Arguably, the name could also derive
from the traditional practice of embroidering
or attaching a school's, regiment's, club's,
or ship's coat-of-arms to the breast of
the coat - thus emblazoning the garment.