THE LOGICAL AND EMOTIONAL, GREY ROLL NECK

THE LOGICAL AND EMOTIONAL, GREY ROLL NECK

Words by Simon Crompton

Last year on PermanentStyle.com I included a cashmere roll neck from Private White VC among my favourite things of the Autumn. There were several things that appealed.

One was the cashmere itself, which wasn’t as finished as some cashmeres and therefore didn’t initially feel so fluffy, but aged better over time. There was less pilling and it kept its shape. Andrew in the Duke Street store said that had been his experience, and it bore out with mine.

Second was the thickness. There is a tendency with winter roll necks to make them very chunky, the better to feel cozy and reassuring. But this is rarely that practical, as they essentially become outerwear.

A roll neck like that is too warm to wear around the house – and few people put on extra knitwear and a coat when they go out. It might seem silly or mundane, but it’s the reason many of my roll necks never get worn. And the PWVC one is perfect: wearable around the house, lovely under a parka outside.

The third was the design. Very subtle points all of them, but perhaps the most important.

A roll neck should be comfortable but not swamp. The ribbing at the bottom should be long, to allow the body to roll up and over it, a little. (Without that, the knit will ride up every time you stretch your arms – a mistake many guys make when trying to get knits that are slim.) And the neck itself should be nowhere small enough to bear comparison with that aberration in knitwear, the mock neck.

 

There was only one problem with the roll necks PWVC had last year – in my view – and that was that there was no grey in the range.

I would argue the two most useful colours for knitwear are navy and mid-grey. Navy is the smartest, and can be worn with everything save navy chinos or dark denim. Grey is more casual and can be worn with everything except that smart staple, the grey flannel.

So which is the most useful for you depends on which trousers you wear most – denim/chinos or flannels. For me, a knit like this is largely a casual piece, so it’s denim/chinos. Ipso facto, grey is the best colour. A nice mid-grey melange.

I suggested to Private White VC that they include a grey this year, and thankfully they have. They just asked that I do a freelance article for them (which is what you’re reading) explaining my logic.

Apologies, by the way, if the piece overall is a little logical. It’s the way my mind works.

If it helps to inject a little emotion, I wore this grey roll neck throughout the two days I shot a mini-campaign for PWVC in Ireland (pictured), with photographer and Belfast-resident Jamie Ferguson.

I fly to Belfast wearing it; I wore it exiting the airport into the cold drizzle, scampering to Jamie’s car; I wore it during our shoot on the beach (skimming stones) and walking the heather (patting dogs); and I wore it the next day in Jamie’s house, while he edited and I wrote.

It did sterling service, and felt luxurious and reassuring throughout.

Shop our 100% Cashmere Knitwear

 

Words by Simon Crompton

Last year on PermanentStyle.com I included a cashmere roll neck from Private White VC among my favourite things of the Autumn. There were several things that appealed.

One was the cashmere itself, which wasn’t as finished as some cashmeres and therefore didn’t initially feel so fluffy, but aged better over time. There was less pilling and it kept its shape. Andrew in the Duke Street store said that had been his experience, and it bore out with mine.

Second was the thickness. There is a tendency with winter roll necks to make them very chunky, the better to feel cozy and reassuring. But this is rarely that practical, as they essentially become outerwear.

A roll neck like that is too warm to wear around the house – and few people put on extra knitwear and a coat when they go out. It might seem silly or mundane, but it’s the reason many of my roll necks never get worn. And the PWVC one is perfect: wearable around the house, lovely under a parka outside.

The third was the design. Very subtle points all of them, but perhaps the most important.

A roll neck should be comfortable but not swamp. The ribbing at the bottom should be long, to allow the body to roll up and over it, a little. (Without that, the knit will ride up every time you stretch your arms – a mistake many guys make when trying to get knits that are slim.) And the neck itself should be nowhere small enough to bear comparison with that aberration in knitwear, the mock neck.

 

 

There was only one problem with the roll necks PWVC had last year – in my view – and that was that there was no grey in the range.

I would argue the two most useful colours for knitwear are navy and mid-grey. Navy is the smartest, and can be worn with everything save navy chinos or dark denim. Grey is more casual and can be worn with everything except that smart staple, the grey flannel.

So which is the most useful for you depends on which trousers you wear most – denim/chinos or flannels. For me, a knit like this is largely a casual piece, so it’s denim/chinos. Ipso facto, grey is the best colour. A nice mid-grey melange.

I suggested to Private White VC that they include a grey this year, and thankfully they have. They just asked that I do a freelance article for them (which is what you’re reading) explaining my logic.

Apologies, by the way, if the piece overall is a little logical. It’s the way my mind works.

If it helps to inject a little emotion, I wore this grey roll neck throughout the two days I shot a mini-campaign for PWVC in Ireland (pictured), with photographer and Belfast-resident Jamie Ferguson.

I fly to Belfast wearing it; I wore it exiting the airport into the cold drizzle, scampering to Jamie’s car; I wore it during our shoot on the beach (skimming stones) and walking the heather (patting dogs); and I wore it the next day in Jamie’s house, while he edited and I wrote.

It did sterling service, and felt luxurious and reassuring throughout.

Shop our 100% Cashmere Knitwear

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