Explaining the Differences Between "Sukajan," "Sutajan / Stajum / Stajan / Varsity Jacket," and "Award Jacket."

Explaining the Differences Between "Sukajan," "Sutajan / Stajum / Stajan / Varsity Jacket," and "Award Jacket."

Due to the revival boom, the "Sutajan / Stajan / Stajum" has been gaining popularity. However, there is often confusion between "Sukajan / Skajan / Skajum," "Varsity Jacket," and "Award Jacket."

What is the difference between Sukajan and Stajan?  Explaining the origin of the names and their characteristics!

"Sukajan'' and "Stajan'' are two items that are often confused because their names are one letter different and their designs are relatively similar. Both names are abbreviations for the word "~jumper," but their backgrounds are completely different.

With similar names, it's understandable that some people might not know the differences. In this article, we'll focus on "Sutajan" and explain the differences, characteristics, and styling compared to "Sukajan," "Varsity Jacket," and "Award Jacket."

In simple terms, "Sutajan" is synonymous with "Varsity Jacket" and "Award Jacket."

What is Sukajan?

First of all, sukajan refers to a jumper made of satin fabric that features flashy embroidery. The name Sukajan comes from the fact that it was born in Yokosuka, Kanagawa Prefecture, which is famous for having a U.S. Navy base, so the name Skajan was changed from Yokosuka Jumper to Sukajan. In other words, Sukajan is a Japanese-made outerwear. Therefore, the embroidery designs incorporate Japanese and oriental motifs such as dragons, tigers, hawks, and Mt. Fuji. In the first place, the Skajan was a souvenir created for American soldiers shortly after the war, and is known as a souvenir jacket in the United States. U.S. soldiers at the time liked to take traditional Japanese crafts such as kimonos and obi obi back home as souvenirs, so we took inspiration from that preference and added Japanese-style embroidery based on the design of baseball jackets, which Americans are familiar with. It is said that this is the beginning.



Made in Japan sukajan, loved by overseas fashionistas

Skajan jackets are still loved by fashionistas around the world as a cool Japanese-style jacket. This is a street snapshot of a man taken in Paris. This is a perfect example of a chic sukajan with a flashy design, with the sukajan embroidered with a hawk and a tiger on both chests, all in a monotone style. If you want to enjoy coordinating your sukajan's bold design to a lesser extent, why not try wearing this style as a reference?



What is a stadium jacket?

A stadium jacket is a type of outerwear that is extremely heat-retaining and has leather sleeves attached to a body made of thick melton fabric. This is an abbreviation of the stadium jumper, which was originally an outerwear worn by baseball players over their uniforms to keep their shoulders cool during games on cold days. This spread from baseball teams to universities and high schools, and was even used by fans as cheering wear. It is unique to stadium jackets that they are decorated with patches and embroidery with team logos, school names, etc., and this is a distinctive feature of showing off which team or school you support. Today, it is widely recognized as a fashion item that appears in luxury brand collections, including Saint Laurent's teddy jackets, and has even been incorporated into everyday wear. By the way, stadium jacket is a Japanese-English term, and its common names in English include varsity jacket, award jacket, and letterman jacket.





"Sutajan," short for "Stadium Jumper," refers to jackets originally designed for use in stadiums to keep athletes warm during practice or breaks. In other countries, it's known by various names like "Varsity Jacket," "Award Jacket," or "Letterman Jacket." Initially, it was said to be a jacket worn only by elite athletes.

Due to its high design appeal, "Sutajan" expanded to various colleges and high schools and eventually became popular among spectators who wore them to support their teams. In Japan, it gained popularity in the 1980s, mainly within university circles, and later became a fashion item, especially during the Shibuya casual fashion trend.

Characteristics of "Sutajan"

Now, let's introduce some distinctive features of "Sutajan."

Patches and Back Embroidery


One of the key features of "Sutajan" is the presence of alphabetic or numeric embroidery or prints on the left chest area and the back. The left chest often features initials of the team or university sewn with chenille patches.

On the right chest and back, you can find embroidery indicating position numbers, graduation years, achievements, and more. Over the years, these embroideries became more elaborate, sometimes even becoming objects of aspiration.

Body and Sleeve Fabric Transitions


Another characteristic of "Sutajan" is the use of different materials for the body and sleeves. While the body typically uses heavy materials like wool or melton, the sleeves are often made of leather. Originally, sleeves were also made of wool or melton, but leather sleeves became more common after 1940 to accommodate the vigorous movements of sports.

Ribbed Lines


"Sutajan" typically features ribbing at three locations: the collar, cuffs, and hem, often with one or two stripes running across them. Some "Sutajan" jackets have collars that are not ribbed but instead have a collar design.

Differences Between "Sutajan," "Sukajan," and "Award Jacket"

Now, let's explain the differences between "Sutajan," "Sukajan," and "Award Jacket."


Differences Between "Sutajan" and "Sukajan"


While "Sutajan" is a jacket designed for use in stadiums, "Sukajan" (short for "Yokosuka Jumper") has its origins in Yokosuka, Japan. It was created as a souvenir jacket by American servicemen stationed in Yokosuka, who added Japanese-style embroidery to their jackets. "Sukajan" became a popular souvenir and fashion item, featuring colorful and intricate Oriental-style embroidery.

Fabric Differences

"Sutajan" typically uses heavy materials like wool or melton for colder seasons. In contrast, "Sukajan" often uses lightweight and glossy materials like satin or unique textured fabrics, making it suitable for spring and summer.


Sukajan Fabric Above


Sutajan Fabric Above

Decorative Differences

"Sutajan" features patches and embroidery associated with teams, universities, and achievements. In contrast, "Sukajan" showcases Japanese-style designs such as dragons and eagles in vibrant embroidery.

Differences Between "Sutajan" and "Award Jacket"


The term "Stajan" is a Japanese creation, while "Award Jacket" is the international term used for the same item. As previously mentioned, "Stajan" refers to jackets created for athletes to wear over their uniforms during downtime to keep warm. Similarly, "Award Jacket" refers to jackets given as awards to athletes who excel in competitions.

Men's and Women's Outfits with "Sutajan"

Now, let's provide some recommended outfit ideas using "Sutajan" for both men and women.

Men's "Sutajan" Outfits


Model Height: 170cm
Wearing Size: Men's L equivalent

Model Height: 168cm
Wearing Size: Men's XL equivalent

Model Height: 178cm
Wearing Size: Men's M equivalent

    Women's "Sutajan" Outfits


    Model Height: 160cm
    Wearing Size: Men's L equivalent


    Model Height: 151cm
    Wearing Size: Men's M equivalent

    Model Height: 160cm
    Wearing Size: Men's XL equivalent

      In conclusion, "Sutajan" and "Sukajan" may have similar names, but they are entirely different items.


      Similarly, "Sutajan" and "Award Jacket" refer to the same item, but the terminology varies by region. The value of these jackets continues to rise due to the revival boom, and you can find a wide selection of "Sutajan" and "Sukajan" at second-hand stores like here in Japonista. Be sure to find your favorite piece!

      Sukajan along with Stadium Jackets are gonna be this season's trending outerwear as always! 

      Just like sukajans, stadium jackets often have flashy designs, but the latter's appeal is that it can be coordinated with an American casual style. You can also arrange the patches to your liking, so you can have fun growing them yourself. Stadium jackets are attracting attention as a trending item this season, and sales seem to be strong at Uniqlo and other stores. It also has excellent heat retention, so it's a good idea to consider it as your main winter outerwear this year.



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