Buying a new winter coat can be such a pressure filled exercise. You spend hours searching online, wondering if what you choose will go out of style in a year or be warm enough, etc.
I recently wrote an article for the Bottom Line Inc newsletter, Stylish Yet Practical Winter Coats, and it occurred to me that my blog readers would want to hear some of the advice in the article.
As a stylist, I am obsessed with a good overcoat. I collect them. I must have 30! It is a bit of a sickness, I admit. Of course, no one needs to own that many, but everyone should at least have a solid-colored short or mid-length style and a good long coat that will match the majority of his/her wardrobe. A super warm parka is also a necessity but that is too much information for one blog so let’s save that topic for another week!
Start by checking your closet to assess what you own. Depending on the cut, quality and fabric, you may have coats that you’ve been wearing for the last 20 years. If they are classics, like a pea coat, that may be fine. But styles, silhouettes and trends change about every five to seven years—and a trendier coat may go out of style sooner. It may be time for a winter coat update to keep your wardrobe fresh and fashionable while maintaining quality.
Know yourself–Do you like to follow the trends? Is it better for you to buy less expensive coats because you are always going to want the latest thing? Or would you rather splurge on something super chic or classic that you can wear for seven years, saving yourself shopping time and angst?
Look for signs of a well-made coat—buttons that are sewn on well…no loose or hanging threads…50% or higher natural fabrics such as wool or cashmere versus synthetics such as acrylic and polyester (unless you’re buying a down coat). If you’re buying online, read the customer reviews for help gauging fit, sizing and durability.
Quality overcoats can be pricey, so take advantage of Thanksgiving and Black Friday sales—the later in the season the smaller the selection but the better the sales. Here are some of my picks for great-looking coats, including budget-friendly ones and splurges. Let me know your favorites!
Mark New York Paige Bouclé Coat, $134
Kenneth Cole Asymmetrical Bouclé Walker Coat, $134
Lauren Ralph Lauren Stand-Collar Single-Breasted Walker Coat, $142
Uniqlo Women’s Cashmere Blend Chester Coat, $150
Lauren Ralph Lauren Single Breasted Reefer Coat, $154
Lauren Ralph Lauren Faux-Fur-Collar Walker Coat, $173
Lauren Ralph Lauren Belted Wrap Coat, $210
Lauren Ralph Lauren Maxi Reefer Coat, $221
Avec Les Filles Double Face Star Print Raglan Coat, $229
Talbots Boiled Wool Double Breasted Coat, $300
Cole Haan Signature Woven Coat, $400
Ted Baker London Ellgenc Belted Wrap Coat, $575
MM LaFleur The Prospect Puffer, $595
Fleurette Stand Collar Wool Car Coat, $700
Mackage Mai-R Wool Wrap Coat, $750
Mother of Pearl Mable Wool Plaid Coat, $895
Real Life Style is a style consulting firm that teaches busy women to wear their power so they can live their lives fully and confidently. Lani Inlander and Kyle Dunphy are based in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area and serve clients across the country. We offer personal styling services, an on-demand e-course, corporate services, and training to become a personal stylist.
Once in a while, you can find Lani Inlander and Real Life Style on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. Mostly, they are happily busy serving their fabulous clients, not hanging out online!