With storm Ali having heralded the change in season, it’s time to talk about winter coats – for all ages and budgets…
My obsession with shoes and bags is almost matched by my coat habit. At the last count I have more than 30 coats, eek! No matter what I’m wearing underneath, I can throw on a coat and make a statement. Coats are pieces that I am comfortable investing in (especially if it’s a classic style that can be worn for years) so consider spending as much as you can afford and it may save you having to replace your coat every winter.
H&M is my go-to for affordable, decent quality, on-trend coats. You can pick up a bargain from around £50, but their Premium Range is only a little bit more expensive and the fabrics and finish are worth it. I think Meghan Markle would have no problem stepping out in one of their classic styles this autumn.
River Island hasn’t been on my radar for a while, however I do follow the fabulous Erica Davies on Instagram who recently recommended a coat from their A/W range. It inspired me to check out their offering and this pop of colour just jumped out at me. When your coat is a strong colour, all you need is a fine-knit black jumper, jeans, boots and it all looks amazing!
Who doesn’t love a bit of fun faux fur in the cooler months? I have several faux fur collars that I add to my coats for a subtle ‘fur’ accent, but if you’re prepared fully commit, this coat from Per Una at M&S will instantly make you so pretty in pink. How could you not smile as you wrap yourself up in this furry confection?
I’ve mentioned investment and if I was searching for a ‘forever’ coat I’d be considering a design from Elizabeth Martin Tweed – the Audrey Hepburn of coats. The fullness of the skirt is reminiscent of a bygone era, the generous lapels are luxurious and believe me, this coat will never go out of style.
For children, it’s harder to justify investing a lot of money in a coat they might well have grown out of by the following year, so affordable quality is key for kids, which swiftly brings us back to H&M! Their waterproof jacket is perfect for crisp autumn walks – practical, warm, functional and it comes in five fun colour options.
I do have a soft spot for kids looking traditional though and I’ve bought multiple duffle coats for my boy over the years. Next have a navy one which is not only super smart but also a great price.
From practical to pretty, I also adore Zara’s soft, cosy and fun option. Just don’t let her have Ribena when she’s wearing it.
And if their taste is a little edgier, M&S have a faux-fur hooded parka which is ideal for cool little chicks.
For my husband, it’s all about performance, waterproof and practical outerwear – he usually looks like he’s about to play golf in the rain…even when he’s not! I’d love to smarten him up and if it were up to me he’d be wearing something from Arket, however the reality is, we’ll most likely compromise with a timeless classic from H&M.
Now we’ve wrapped up the entire family in cashmere, wool, faux fur and checks, I’m going to end with my ultimate, affordable statement coat as recommended by the aforementioned Erica Davies. Okay, at first glance it’s perhaps not for the shy and retiring, but it is surprisingly versatile. I’d wear it with all the trimmings, but you can detach the lapel and broaches resulting in a simple stylish coat in bold print – gorgeous!
Cathy Owen is a freelance creative with 15 years’ experience in PR, fashion show production, as a photoshoot producer, art director, model agency manager and casting agent. Her greatest achievement to date is managing to style a shoot with kids, animals and a hot air balloon!
Find Cathy’s blog at cathyowencreative.wordpress.com or follow on l @cathyocreative