How to pick your winter coat

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Winter coat is likely to be the most expensive investment into your wardrobe this winter so it really pays to put a little bit of thought and preparation into it, or it can be the most expensive mistake.

How to pick your winter coat

 

Winter coat is likely to be the most expensive investment into your wardrobe this winter so it really pays to put a little bit of thought and preparation into it, or it can be the most expensive mistake.

If you live in central or Western Europe you will probably spend the next 4 months wearing your coat, so picking something that is comfortable and you actually like is really important. Here are few helpful tips we have collected to help you make you decision.

 

There are two main aspects of a coat you need to consider:

1.      Function

2.      Form

 

Function

When you are choosing your winter coat it is important to consider if it is fit for purpose? What you need to think about is what needs do you need your coat to fulfil? What is your lifestyle?

If you are a busy working mom who needs to wear business attire during the week but spends most of the weekend at the touchlines of a football pitch then it is quite unlikely that one coat can match both functions. While mixing casual and classy styles is one of the autumn trends a casual coat can really bring down the look of a more formal outfit, while wearing well tailored classic cut coat might look good even with a pair of jean, it is quite unlikely that it will keep you warm and dry enough on a rainy Sunday morning. In that case we would recommend investing into two coats, each with its own purpose and needs to fulfil.

However if you are a lady who can enjoy weekend sleep ins and tends to brave the elements only while walking from the house to the car and from the car to the office/shop/restaurant, you can probably survive with one good and stylish coat. You can always supplement your lighter coat with a warm oversized scarf should you be required to spend more time outside for any reason or occasion.

Once you know the function for your coat it should help you decide on the fabric and the insulation of the coat you want to buy.

If you need a coat that is water proof or water resistant you will need to choose appropriate fabric. Normally the rating of how water resistant the fabric is will be displayed on the label. While wool coats look a lot more sleek, they would not be the best choice for rainy weather as they will soak in all the moisture rather than let it run down.

When it comes to woven fabrics, coats containing wool will always last longer and keep you warmer.

If fighting off cold is your main priority you might need to consider the type of insulation used for the coat. Normally you would have a choice between synthetic insulation or down. Synthetic insulation is heavier, a little less breathable but it retains heat even when it is wet. On the other hand down is very cozy, light, natural and breathable but once it gets wet it will not keep you warm.

 

Form

When it comes the choosing a coat that will look most flattering on you, we must go back the oldie but goody body shape. Knowing your body shape will eliminate the millions of coats on offer in all the shops that will not make you look your best and narrow down the search to the cuts that look most flattering on you. Here is some advice for each and every body shape:

 

Pear shape- Choose fitted, tailored coats that have A-line cut. Your waist is your best feature so make sure to accentuate that. A belt is a good option. Classic straight cut tailored coats might not be the best option as they might catch you on the hips. Avoiding large pockets placed on the hips is also a good idea.

As the top part of your body is visually smaller than your bottom part you can balance it out by choosing coats with wide, detailed or even furry collars. Pea coats with hoods and biker jackets have similar affect, but make sure they end just below your waist rather than at your hips. The eye is always drawn to the line where things end, so you should avoid attracting the eye to your widest part.

 

Apple shape- Women with apple shaped bodies tend to be widest at their waist so it is a good idea to avoid fitted coats, especially those that tie at the waist. A swing coat, which is fitted on the top and flares out just below the bust is the most flattering option. You should also avoid double breasted coats as the double row of buttons creates a horizontal line visually widening the mid section. Coats with vertical embellishments or contrasting buttons in single row create a vertical line elongating the silhouette.

 

Rectangle Shape- Women with rectangle shape do not have a clearly defined waist. Opting for a belted coat could create the illusion of those feminine curves. On the other hand if you are quite tall and slim and like that and want to show it off you can always choose a long straight cut coat. That will accentuate the slim silhouette.

 

Inverted Triangle Shape- Trapeze shape coat or cape will give nice structure and show off your legs. If you are aiming for a more feminine look, you can opt for a bell shaped coat and put a belt on it. Belted bell/cocoon coat will create feminine curves and give you hips.

 

Hour glass shape- similar to dresses any cut showing off the feminine curves is flattering on hour glass shaped women. Classic tailored coats and wrap coats are great choices. Since women with hour glass shapes tend to have fuller busts it is best to choose narrow long collars over bulky and over detailed or fur collars. V-neck line is also more flattering on larger busts in comparison to high collars or funnel necklines.

 

Regardless of your body type following rules apply to them all:

·       Knee length in a coat is universally flattering.

·       Calf length coats, while super sleek, require height. If you aren’t naturally tall, you will need to wear heels every time you want to wear it without being swallowed up by it.

·       If you are petite- choose shorter coats. The shorter the better. Fur collars and details around the neckline will draw attention to your face creating upward line. The sleeves of a coat should end around the wrist. If the sleeves of your coat are longer and cover part of your hand do consider bringing your coat to a tailor. Sleeves that are too long make it look like you are wearing your mother’s coat. A good coat is worth the investment and you will feel so much better wearing something that truly fits you well.

·       If you are really tall and have the opposite issue of sleeves being too short, choosing an oversized style coat would fix it. And being tall you can really carry off the extra fabric in the oversized coat.

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