Fashion magazines and mothers alike advise that winter coat shopping should take place long before winter actually begins. The time to snap up a good ’un before they all sell out is early autumn, meaning that the time is now. I took heed of this sage advice and duly went out to look for a new coat a little while ago. Somehow, I ended up with three.
I haven’t bought a new coat in forever. My old one, which is about four years old, was on its last legs. There were holes inside the pockets, meaning that the coat lining had become home to irretrievable small change, pens and shopping lists. There was a candle wax stain (why do trendy tapas restaurants insist on putting candles in ill-positioned wall recesses?) which was impossible to get rid of. Mainly, though, I just didn’t really like it any more. It was time for a change.
Here are the three coats I plumped for. Obviously I needed all of them because they are all appropriate for different occasions and weather conditions. Obviously.
The Practical One
Petite Slim Pocket Coat, £58.
This coat is what I believe is known as a ‘car coat’ and it comes from the petite range at Topshop. The sleeves are a teeny tiny bit shorter than I would like but still just about acceptable. What’s a short but long-armed girl to do?
It’s a black wool/felt type material, although the label tells me that there’s a significant amount of polyester involved, and has two pockets. It fastens with three hidden poppers and the small lapels give it a fairly masculine, tailored look.
It goes with everything, leaves room for a scarf and will keep me warm.
She Is A Thing Of Beauty
I had been planning on spending £120 on this coat from M&S, which turned out to look like a giant hessian sack on me. For some reason, I felt justified in spending the same amount of money on two coats. Two for the price of one!
Even though I had decided to buy the practical coat above only moments earlier, when I laid eyes on this one I instantly began rationalising a second purchase. I don’t have a leather jacket and it’s a classic staple piece I should probably own. The fur collar is detachable so it’s like having two completely different jackets. It fits me really well. I’ll totally wear it for years and years. The reasoning ended with me stroking the furry collar against my cheek and running to the till.
It’s comfortable, toasty warm and the faux leather is beautifully soft. It finishes at just the right point on the waist and the combination of fur and leather makes me feel like a combination of ladylike and badass when I wear it. Love it.
The Non-practical but Aesthetically Pleasing One
‘Vanessa’ Camel Tailored Coat, £34.99
I really fancied a camel coat this year. I saw a brunette wearing one and thought how well it suited her, and how sharp and swish it looked. After the ill-fated trip to Marks and Spencer, where every camel coat made me look like I’d dressed up in my dad’s overcoat, I gave up.
I had a little search online and came across this one by Missguided. It’s more of a jacket than a coat, the felt material is very thin and it doesn’t even have any buttons. The colour, however, is perfect. It has quite a sharp lapel and two simple pockets, and finishes mid-thigh.
It won’t keep me remotely warm come winter proper, but for £35 I can’t really complain. Anyway, this coat makes for a great ‘trans-seasonal piece’, perfect to throw on over a light knit in autumn, as a fashion journalist might say. It’s probably more likely that a fashion journalist would touch the 100% polyester material, hiss, and flee, clutching her Shrimps coat close.