Fashion loves hybrids—jeans as tight as leggings! shorts that look like a skirt!—and fashionspeak loves hybrid descriptors, also known as portmanteaus. Thus: jeggings (first use in print: 2009) and skort (1951), not to mention athleisure (1995), flatforms (2010?), and cardi-coat (date unknown). (More fashmanteaus here.) This year we’ve been hearing a lot about the shacket (“the cutest way to stay comfortable in between seasons”—Stylecaster; “a must-have”--Narcity), a blend of shirt and jacket that sounds like it ought to describe a petite shack. It’s newly trendy but not really new at all.
First of all, the word itself was coined almost a decade ago. I mentioned it in passing (and with scorn) in an August 2012 post about the women’s athletic-wear company Title Nine. I thought Title Nine had invented shacket, which may be true: I haven’t found any earlier citations for the word. Even back then, shackets weren’t only for women: A November 2012 article in the Wall Street Journal about casual menswear acknowledged both the shacket and the “sweaket” (sweater-jacket). Let’s be grateful that “sweaket” died an early death.