I WAS going to call this post “how to wear a coat”, but I changed my mind at the last minute, because, seriously, how obvious is THAT? I mean, everyone knows how to wear a coat, don’t they? It’s not rocket science, after all: you just pick a coat you like, put it on, and bingo – you’re wearing a coat!
Well, yes, it IS that simple… but it’s also not quite THAT simple. The fact is, if you base your decision on which coat to buy purely on the premise of whether you like the look of it or not, sure, you’ll end up with a coat you love the look of – but which might not look particularly good with your outfits. I, for instance, learned the hard way that while I’m instinctively drawn to brightly coloured coats, which are just SO much more interesting than the dull neutrals we’re normally faced with in winter (as if winter wasn’t dull enough already!), the fact that I also like to wear brightly coloured clothes – or, at least, I did at the time I learned this lesson – meant that every time I left the house, I’d look like a box of crayons. Which is fine, if that’s the look you’re going for, obviously, but I WASN’T, so I should really have stuck with those neutrals, huh?
I’ve also learned through trial and error that you have to think carefully about the clothes you’re going to be wearing under your coat, before you decide to make that purchase. A lot of people think it doesn’t really matter, because your coat will cover most of your clothes anyway, but it doesn’t always work that way. In my case, the full skirts and dresses which are my preferred style of clothing, just don’t work with the straight-cut coats I always used to find myself buying: the skirts would end up bunched under the coat, and it was an uncomfortable as it was unstylish. These days I’ve learned to choose my coats to fit my clothes: and I’ve made this little graphic to share what I’ve learned. I hope it’s useful – and, of course, if you have any tips I’ve forgotten, I’d love to hear them!
Sadly, the answer to “which coat should I wear?” is most often “the one that will keep you warm in minus 10F”. Doesn’t do much for fashion, but at least I don’t freeze to death between the car and the office.