Autumn has finally wrapped up and the temperatures have began to seriously plummet, so now’s the time to look at making that key seasonal outerwear purchase, to keep you feeling cosy whilst still looking slick throughout the winter months.
We saw everything from the classic trench coat, to ankle length leather coats and even coats that looked like bedding on the catwalk, and the high street is filled with just as many variations. Of course, we want our winter coat to look good, but be functional, practical and most importantly of all, timeless. This is something that is increasingly important to me when purchasing any new clothing, is it something that will stand the test of time, outlast any possibly short-lived trends and ultimately be worn and well-loved for years to come.
You also need to consider… where will you wear it? Does it need to be super warm or lighter? What can we style it with? It’s a key part of our seasonal wardrobes as it’s most likely the first part of our outfits that onlookers will notice, and a piece we will wear all season. Thus it needs to take us from country walks and watching the rugby, to our commute and festive evening drinks. We want it to flatter our figure, and yet have room for all of our cosy layers underneath.
When making that crucial investment in a winter coat, I’m willing to wager that the first two colours that come to mind are black and navy. While I’m not going to dispute that you’re in pretty safe territory here, I will urge you to consider adding a hit of charcoal grey to your outerwear line-up. A classic and streamlined peacoat design deftly walks that tricky line between standout and subtle and most importantly it’s a coat that will stand the test of time and become a staple of your autumn winter wardrobe for years and years to come.
Here’s a few tips from me, things to bear in mind when choosing your investment coat this winter.
There are some details to be wary of when picking your coat; always check the label first and look out for a high wool content. Anything with more than 40% Polyster or acrylic fabrics should be avoided, as they don’t have the same insulation benefits and won’t regulate your body temperature in the same way as a wool coat. I would always advise you ignore designer names, for me it’s always about the quality of the materials and the way a coat has been constructed; look for a flattering, well designed silhouette, and neat, small stitches, as well as pockets and a lining.
Always try it on with layers. Your coat is most likely to be worn with far more than just a shirt or merino knit underneath, so when shopping for your investment coat it’s always a good idea to bring a few layers with you, try it on with a chunky knit or layered with a shirt and gilet to mirror what you would typically be wearing it with in your day to day. , perhaps even with your thermal too! Can you still do up all the buttons? How is you arm movement? These are all things worth considering to ensure the fit is spot on.
Try not to think about fashion, and trends when choosing your coat. Many styles are classic and timeless and will work in your wardrobe for many years – this makes your coat a worthy investment, not to mention a more sustainable purchase! If you usually have a smart style and tend to wear lots of blazers, look for something with a more structured silhouette like a classic trench or wool overcoat. If you have a more relaxed style and like wearing lots of jeans and knits you should opt for something with a less rigid silhouette, a classic peacoat is always a winner.
You want your coat to be versatile and work with everything in your wardrobe and the easiest tones to work with other shades, are, surprisingly neutral (!) . My advice would be to opt for a charcoal grey or black if you want to play it safe, or choose something more patterned and detailed like herringbone or houndstooth – depending on the tones of your wardrobe. Consider the tones of your knitwear, your shirts, your trousers, and ensure your coat will work with at least 90% of your AW19 outfits; it needs to be versatile and interchangeable, and keeping it neutral is one of the best ways of ensuring this.
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