Guys, this is how you wear flannel without the dreaded lumberjack and hipster jokes

The Autumnal Equinox is fast-approaching (Sept. 23), and with it comes a parade of flannel.

Thanks to its comfort, ease, and warmth, the brushed cotton fabric will be as popular as ever this fall/winter — and not just among Brooklyn hipsters and lumberjacks.

In case you haven’t jumped on the flannel bandwagon yet, here are a few tips to get you started.

Stay away from super heavy fabrics

J Crew
Herringbone flannel shirt in Black Watch Plaid, J. Crew ($US79.50). J Crew

Erase thick flannels from your mind and your closet. While brands like Pendleton and Woolrich make fantastic flannels, their shirts have a bulky feel that might make you look like you own a blue ox.

For ease of layering and a less chunky look, choose flannels that are advertised as light or mid-weight. This J Crew herringbone flannel lets you wear the trend minus the heft.

Remember that flannel does not mean plaid

Oliver Spencer
New York cotton flannel shirt, Oliver Spencer ($US200). Mr Porter

Plaids and flannels appear together a lot, but not always. In fact, a solid-coloured or mélange flannel is an even classier look that bypasses the whole “woodsy” aesthetic. Non-plaid flannels are also easier to match and work into your wardrobe. This Oliver Spencer flannel is a perfect example.

Have some fun

Oliver Spencer
New York cotton flannel shirt, Oliver Spencer ($US200). Mr Porter

Patterns aren’t just for spring. If you’re bored of solids and plaids, inject a bit of fun into your fall and winter with some novel patterned flannels. While not for everyone, a subtle pattern, such as the one on this Oliver Spencer shirt, is a step above your average flannel.

Layer, layer, layer

Button-down collar checked wool blend shirt, A.P.C. ($US265). Mr Porter

In fall, layering is really the name of the game. Flannels — especially lightweight ones — are ideal layering pieces, whether under a fleece, a puffer vest, a denim jacket, or a wool coat. They go with just about everything and can serve as the first, second, or even third layering piece, depending on the weather.

The corduroy jacket on top of this A.P.C. flannel shows the case in point.

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