My mom has great taste in coats. When I was just out of college and had gone to work for A Big Corporation, she bought me a coat for Christmas. At the time, my style was random and occasionally collegiate, with mad dashes to the Land of Oddly Inappropriate. The coat she selected for me was brown tweed, with a long, slender, vaguely military silhouette. The collar stood up beneath my chin and the length was mid-calf. To be more specific, I might call the color Tobacco. It would have looked fabulously Victorian with a tidy mink muff.
I liked the coat a lot. Mostly because it seemed sophisticated and grown-up to me. But here's how I knew it was a truly awesome coat: There was a guy in my office--let's call him Greg--wait, that's his real name. Let's call him Chad. So Chad sees me in the coat and says, "That's a beautiful coat. Someone must have bought it for you. There's no way you picked it out." I never could figure out why he disliked me so much or was always so rude to me. Then again, he was definitely a snob and was never particularly nice to anyone.
In a way, he was right. I didn't know all that much about dressing myself. Even at twenty-three, I was still big into experimenting with my look.
Here are two of my very favorite coats:
This is a lambskin leather stroller that my DH bought me seven or eight years ago from Frances Kahn, a yummy boutique in Roanoke, VA. You can see it's nicely softened with wear. I've sent it off to be cleaned and conditioned twice, and it has a small triangular tear near the placket. Any self-respecting fashionista would've handed it off long ago--but if people can treasure 1960s motorcycle jackets, why shouldn't I treasure my leather? It does have a detachable fur-trimmed hood. I've never been a big fur wearer, and I'm not sure what animal the fur came from. Still, I love wearing the coat--even if now it's just to pick up the kids or go to the grocery store. Strollers come down to about mid-thigh, a great length for me. And this coat has no waist issues.
Here's my other favorite, bought to replace the stroller for cold-weather, fashion wear:
Now that I see this coat in a photo, I can see how reminiscent it is of the tweed coat my mom bought me all those years ago. Funny.
I've always wanted an extravagant shearling coat. For a long time, I thought I should have a western-looking one: light tan, with big, white, fuzzy lapels and cuffs. Something to wear with blue jeans and boots. While it would still be kind of fun to have one of those for play days, this coat is more my style. Wish I could give you a better picture of the color. You can look at the pretty pictures of the other ones at Mill Valley Sheepskin and Leather, where I bought this one.
I will wear this coat forever, I expect. Or forever and a winter, because it's not getting worn this winter--more's the pity.
My latest purchase:
And me in it (will stop shooting in the green hallway--not a good place for photos):
It's not very heavy, so I don't know how warm it will be. And the fauxfur sticks up in a funky way, reminding me of this guy:
It could be a few inches longer, but I do like the jacket's tailored shape, zippered pockets and the detachability of the hood. Plus, it was under $50.
Calvin Klein Down Jacket: $49.95 (Sam's Club)
Do you have a favorite coat or jacket that you will never surrender to the Fashion Police? Hope you're staying cozy!