Sunday, January 23, 2011

Post #5: Staying Warm...

            As the days at Colgate get colder and the fall leaves disappear more quickly than they should, those warm pieces of outerwear that come in all shapes and sizes begin to pop up more and more on the quad. Yes, I’m talking about The Coat. And because Colgate doesn’t get the warm weather that southern California gets year-round, it seems to be one of those closet essentials that you just have to have.
            At the turn of the 20th century, a woman’s coat was long. It was a piece of thick ankle-grazing fabric that often had an intricate neckline. In the “Roaring Twenties” the style was the wrap-over. Whatever the length, one side of the coat always wrapped over the other:

            The 40s brought shorter hemlines with the fabric restrictions that occurred in some countries (such as Britain) during World War II. Wearing your man’s coat was very “in fashion,” and strong shoulders were the favorite stylistic choice. The year 1961 brought us Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s. The trench coat made one of its most famous movie appearances when Holly Golightly called out for Cat in the rain. The 70s, 80s, and 90s went by and now we’re in the new millennium, where coats are more versatile than ever.
            So whether you already own the winter coat that’s going to get you through the season, or whether you’re still searching for that perfect outer shell, I thought I’d leave you with this guide to coats for the Fall/Winter 2010 season. 

The Bomber Jacket: Built for keeping warm, this thick (normally leather) jacket is fitted in the wrist, zippered, and has a wraparound collar. If you’re looking for the chicest of the bomber style this season, check out Burberry Prorsum’s shearling-coated ones. If you’re looking for something a little more “shoppable,” check out Free People’s Woolie Knit Bomber jacket: 


The Leather Jacket: Whether it be tight-fitted like my favorite from Gwen Stefani’s L.A.M.B. Fall Ready-to-Wear collection...

...or whether it be slightly looser like those worn in Grease, this classic will always give your look an edge. 

The Trench Coat: While the most famous version of this coat may be attributed to the classic khaki-colored ones created by Burberry, trench coats of every pedigree are inhabiting stores this season. From H&M to London Fog, this predominantly knee-length double-breasted piece of outerwear is being featured in myriad colors.  Another plus: Who doesn't want to look like Audrey Hepburn in the rain?


The Fur Coat: If you can pull off the fur coat (whether in a solid rich color like most on the runway this season or in an animal print, then by all means wear it. However, don’t wind up looking like this model who got sent down the Chanel runway:

The Brocade Coat: Probably the highlight of Balmain’s Fall runway show, this coat looks like it belongs among the ranks of Louis XIV:

While most of these are following a more military-like style, this is one piece that definitely branches out from the norms of outerwear. If you’re looking for a more affordable version, Bebe’s Brocade Military Coat is a good place to start.

The Pea Coat: Seemingly a Colgate favorite, the Pea Coat will never go out of style. Made of heavy wool, it will be sure to keep you warm during the freezing months ahead of us. While the more classic versions come with double-breasted buttons and more muted tones, feel free to mix things up as stores are carrying the Pea Coat in a variety of fun colors nowadays. My personal favorite this season: (

But no matter what coat you choose to don this winter, remember to stay warm…and don’t be afraid to let your outer shell be fashionable.

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