How to Wear Breeks, Plus Twos, and Plus FoursFrom fly-fishing on the banks of the mighty River Tay to clay pigeon shooting in the Highlands, Scotland is home to a number of exciting country sporting locations. With all the picturesque scenery you could ever dream of, dressing for the part is equally important for fully appreciating the country’s finest outdoor activities.
As experts in all things country clothing, we know a thing or two about dressing for a sporting occasion. Whether you’re red deer stalking or golfing, a trusty pair of breeks are invaluable and styling them correctly is a must for impressing at your local club.
Discover how to find the right style for you and learn how to pair plus-twos and plus-fours with the rest of your attire below.
Defining Plus Twos, Plus Fours, and Breeks
The Scottish equivalent of “breeches”, breeks are a type of trouser that finish just below the knee and are often worn tucked into a pair of long stockings or wellington boots.
Traditionally made from new wool or tweed, these garments are worn for a number of formal outdoor country occasions. They have a slightly more form-fitting cut than plus-twos or plus-fours, making them more of a fashion garment than practical wear for many country sports. Often confused with breeks, plus twos are longer on the leg and sit two inches below the knee – hence their name. The full length of plus twos should fall four inches below the bottom of the knee, but when worn correctly, they should be folded up two inches to create a two-inch fold.
Plus twos are also wider around the thigh and knee, making them more practical and giving more range of motion when out in the field compared to full-length trousers. This makes bending and climbing easier, meaning plus twos are extremely popular for walking and golfing. Plus fours are trousers that fall four inches below the knee; that’s eight inches below the knee when unfasted and four inches when folded upwards. Along with the extra length, they have the widest fit of breeks and plus twos – the loose fit giving them a more traditional look that’s not as popular today as it previously was in the past.
Some plus fours may also have a double-pleat front for a fuller silhouette, compared to plus twos which tend to have a flat front and narrower shape. Plus fours are possibly the most practical garment you could own in your country sporting wardrobe because the extra fabric gives you more than enough room to move. This makes them a favourite for golfing, stalking, and other activities that require a lot of leg movement.
The benefits of wearing breeks, plus twos, and plus foursTrying to tuck a full-length pair of trousers into a pair of wellingtons can be a difficult task, or worse still, attempting to roll a pair of shooting socks over your trousers.
That’s the beauty of breeks, plus twos and plus fours. Here are the key benefits:
They’re very practical for any outdoor activity — Whichever country sport whets your appetite, it’s likely that you’ll be active and moving a lot. Whether it’s golfing, fishing, hunting, hill walking, stalking, or something else entirely, breeks and plus twos and fours give you the freedom to fully extend and bend at the leg.
They’re tailored to match your style — While breeks have a flattering close-cut fit, plus twos and fours give a slightly wider fit, meaning that there’s a silhouette to match every taste and figure.
They’re smart enough for formal occasions – Traditionally worn to the local club or at social sporting activities, they are also naturally fashionable and made for more formal occasions.
They’re comfortable – Tweed is often the most popular material of choice for breeks, plus twos, or fours, as it’s soft and comfortable to wear. It’s also extremely insulating in cooler weather.
They help you to stay dry — Some breeks, plus twos, and fours may also come with a special finish to further repel debris and moisture. When they’re tucked into your socks or boots, they are also less likely to pick up dirt and help to preserve the garment.
When should you wear breeks, plus twos, or plus fours?The comfort and practicality that breeks, plus twos, and plus fours offer mean that they’re often synonymous with shooting activities.
For a more formal shoot, or if you’re a member of a club, breeks are part of the quintessential country dress code. If in doubt, breeks will always be a failsafe option that can also lend themselves to walked-up or more casual shoots.
For more specific activities like golf, hiking, and stalking, choose a pair of plus twos or plus fours as they are the most versatile and practical. Whether you select plus twos or fours depends on how much movement you’ll require.
What to wear with breeks
A matching vest — For the full country gentleman look, tweed is the ultimate choice and your tweed must always match. In warmer months, wear tweed breeks with a matching tweed vest over a lightweight shirt. Later in the year, layer over an action back jacket, blazer, or coat for further protection against the changeable Scottish weather.
A three-piece suit — Formal shooting socials call for an outfit to impress, and a three-piece suit answers that call perfectly. A classic tweed jacket or blazer, waistcoat, and breeks are an incomparable combination. You can choose to forego the waistcoat if you want to dress down slightly, or if you want more freedom of movement. They can be fairly restrictive, especially for shooting, so make sure you try your outfit on before heading to the range.
A jacket with pockets — Whether you’re new to country sports or you’re a seasoned veteran, you’ll know that pockets are essential. You’ll probably have a bag with you, a jacket with plenty of pockets will be a huge convenience to prevent rummaging around in your bag unnecessarily. Our Men’s Saxony Waterproof Shooting Coat is specially designed for life out on the field: it’s exquisitely crafted from 100% wool, features deep bellow pockets for holding your spare cartridges, and is equipped with a popper-front closure to keep the wind at bay.
A checked shirt — Like a fine cabernet sauvignon pairs impeccably with a mature cheddar, a check print is the ideal companion to tweed. And a checked shirt is a must-have in any country folk’s repertoire. Choose a colour to complement the weave of your tweed breeks; examine the standout threads and hone in on the colours that stand out to you. Try choosing a check pattern that complements them.
A matching cap – A cap to match your breeks or jacket is essential for bringing your outfit together and finishing a country sporting look. Naturally, a shooting flat cap is an excellent choice and you can often find them in tweed to match with your breeks for a cohesive feel.
How to wear breeks, plus twos, and plus fours correctlyThe length of breeks, plus twos, and plus fours mean they are ideal to wear tucked into a pair of shooting socks. The socks are pulled over the top of the trousers at the knee to help keep your legs dry. The two should seamlessly come together so that any rainwater runs off your trousers and over your footwear, instead of soaking through.
Try to choose a pair with a garter at the top so that you can fasten and stop them from sliding down your legs.
1. When tucking your breeks into your shooting stockings, make sure that you put the shooting stockings over the bottom of the breek
2. Use the garter or sock tie to create a snug join
3. Knot the garter firmly
4. Fold down the cuff of the shooting stocking to cover the join
Breeks, plus twos, and plus fours should be worn with trouser braces to help them stay in place. Whichever country sport you’re taking part in, braces mean you can spend less time readjusting and securing your trousers and more time focusing on the activity at hand.
What type of fabric is best for breeks, plus twos, and plus fours?Tweed is the most popular material as it’s naturally water repellent, breathable, and durable. These qualities make it the ultimate performance fabric when in the field, and its status as a staple Scottish fabric makes it a clear winner for enjoying your favourite country pursuits.
Here at the House of Bruar, we understand that looking the part is an essential part of country sports. That’s why our selection of tweed breeks, plus twos, and plus fours are available in a range of weaves and colours to suit any occasion.
Our Saxony tweed breeks, plus twos, and plus fours feature a fine, short pile which makes them exceptionally soft and comfortable to wear. Find them in earthy, rustic tones for a classic country sportsman feel. Alternatively, we also carry more natural green tweeds to help you blend in with your surroundings. Some of our tweed breeks also have matching items so that you can effortlessly pair your whole look together for a complete sporting style. While polyester isn’t a natural fibre, it’s an excellent choice for breeks, plus twos, and plus fours. Its fibres are supremely robust and lightweight, giving you an excellent range of movement for more active sports. Most notably, polyester is extraordinarily quick-drying – which can be hugely beneficial for outdoor wear during the winter months when there's a higher chance of rainfall.
We stock a selection of polyester breeks from outdoor sporting specialists like Harkila and Seeland. Updating a traditional style with a contemporary twist, you can find breeks finished with a windproof and waterproof membrane for maximum protection, whatever terrain you find yourself in.
Breeks are the cornerstone of any country sporting enthusiast’s wardrobe. Endlessly versatile and available in a range of designs to suit you, find a pair of breeks to transform your next shooting experience at House of Bruar.