Saturday, March 14, 2015

A Canadian's guide to jackets: the wrap coat

This is the fourth post in my 'A Canadian's guide to jacket' series. 
Previous posts here: down-filled parka, fur coat, car coat



THE OCCASION: Work meeting across town

THE JACKET: Thifted, brand unknown

Looking professional in winter comes with its own set of challenges. How do you not look like you're bundled up for recess? Is it possible to get a blazer to fit under a coat without the armpit grip of death? When I travelled to Europe for work a few winters ago, I realized I wanted better outerwear for criss-crossing town between meetings.

For this type of coat, I looked for a heavy wool fabric, longer length (for tights-clad legs), roomier armholes...and a style factor. I found this Canadian-made, pure virgin wool coat for about $30. A self-tie fabric belt creates an hourglass shape and is adjustable to however many layers I'm wearing underneath (I recently lent it to a pregnant friend entering her 3rd trimester, and it was perfect). It's deceptively heavy, but makes for an awesome blanket for long car/plane rides.

I've dated this coat to between 1968 and 1984 based on the union label (there's no neck label). It's fully lined in a silky purple fabric, and has the markings of good workmanship. The sleeves are a tad short for me, but it was a worthwhile trade-off at that price! I added the decorative silver buttons down the front and on the cuffs myself. 

This coat is tricky to accessorize. I think colourful leather gloves would be better than my brown ones here, but I don't own any. I tend to wear it with light-coloured pashminas rather than a scarves. And I'm never sure about the footwear. If I'm not walking far or going to be outside long, I'll wear office pumps. But in this series I committed to footwear made for walking, hence the tall brown nubuck boots. 

Coat - Thrifted (also here)
Boots - Geox
Gloves - Winners
Pashmina - street vendor

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