A guide to what to wear when shooting, and tips on where to buy shooting clothes
For the shooting field a modern sportsman has an embarrassment of riches to choose from. You can see every combination from three-piece matching tweed to full-body camo jumpsuit over the course of a sporting year. British tweed tailoring has been exported all over the world and will never go out of fashion. Good sporting tailors have survived the revolution in outdoor clothing and there are still a fair number around to kit you out for hill or moor, but most guns choose to augment their wardrobe with 21st-century options.
Gore-Tex interliners are widely available and Musto has a new “technical” tweed suit, lighter and less bulky than in previous incarnations. But if you’re planning to go stalking beware of rustle.
London-based guns will find everything they could need at emporia such as Farlows, William Evans and William & Son, and each has its own ranges, too. House of Bruar, on the other hand, has become an essential stop-off for guns north of the Border. Foreign makers worth looking at are Shöffel for coats and Laksen for waterproof tweeds.
The variety of shooting jackets available means there is one for every gun but fit is very important. Do not be too shy to practise your gun-mount in the shop and squat down in your breeks to make sure they are long enough and won’t inhibit fence-climbing or bending to pick up the enormous pile of pheasants that have landed at your feet. Also bear in mind how many layers you are likely to be wearing and beware of seams or wrinkles that could get in the way of a smooth gun-mount. All the gear and no idea is never a good look.
For quality socks Almost Unwearout-able, House of Cheviot and Le Chameau represent excellent quality and value. Every colour and pattern is available but beware of poor-quality examples that end up too short and lack a generous turnover. An inexpensive and eternally use-ful addition is a towelling “rain choker” from Barbour; great for regulating body temperature and keeping the damp out.