Four Coats for Fall
It’s almost fall, although it might not feel like it–but it’s the perfect time to find pieces you’ll have forever at great prices. I have four coats that I wear when it’s cold outside, and all of them have been in my wardrobe for at least a decade.
I’ve written extensively about this trench coat (notably here), which my mother purchased in 1983 or thereabouts. It’s nearly forty years old and you would never know it! (I just put that together the other day–it’s truly in pristine condition.) This coat is a testament to the longevity of good items if you take care of them. It’s truly a classic and I am sure it will last me decades to come.
I have four Barbours–two Beauforts, one Bedale, and one quilted jacket–and all of them have been put through the wringer. They’ve been worn in the city, in the country, in town, on archaeological sites, hiking, through the snow, in just about every situation you can imagine, and they still look wonderful. Barbours are an investment, but a worthwhile one. The Bedale that I favor is thirty years old and thanks to regular rewaxing, will easily go another thirty years.
A classic peacoat will take you from your teenage years well into adulthood. We found my black wool peacoat at Benetton in 2004, just before I started boarding school, and I’ve worn it every fall and winter since. For a new look, you can always replace the buttons on the coat. One of the most awful recent store closings, for me, was the permanent closure of the wonderful Tender Buttons, a gem of a store that will never be replaced. So now I’m off to track down another charming buttons-only shop to replace the buttons on this peacoat.
I wrote an ode to my mother’s overcoat in February and I stand by every word. Every woman should have an overcoat, but good ones seem not to exist. I promise that if I find a good one, I’ll share it!