You probably have good style, because the saying goes, you possibly can store anyplace. However understanding what to purchase whenever you get there, properly that’s a special story altogether.
For all of the smart-casual events which may come up in the course of the winter season, it’s laborious to beat a basic overcoat. Insulating, versatile and a simple technique to take any search for a notch, the outerwear type is a elementary a part of any properly turned-out man’s wardrobe.
Wool won’t be waterproof, however it’s water resistant, able to holding 20 per cent of its weight in water earlier than feeling heavy or moist. It’s additionally one of many warmest materials round, made up of wonderful fibres that lure air that may be heated up by the physique. After which there’s the overcoat’s easy, evergreen minimize, which suggests you possibly can take it to the Christmas celebration simply as simply as you possibly can throw it over a hoodie to attend in line for the newest Supreme drop.
In case you wanted any extra convincing, right here we take you thru every little thing it’s good to must find out about this most enduring of menswear items – from the most effective locations to purchase one to the important thing methods you possibly can type it.
What Is An Overcoat?
As with many up to date menswear staples, it’s tough to pinpoint precisely when the overcoat first emerged. A number of on-line accounts title 1772 because the yr the overcoat was invented, whereas others declare the early 19th century was after they actually got here into their very own.
Regardless, utilization of the phrase itself dates again to the late 18th century, which means overcoats have been being worn earlier than the Regency Interval in Britain.
Crafted from a heavy cloth akin to wool (Merino, melton and many others.), the overcoat is a long-sleeved coat that may be both single- or double-breasted, and often has a single vent on the again.
The topcoat, then again, is a variant loads of folks usually confuse with the overcoat, and is constructed from a lighter cloth, extending to the knee at its very longest. So as to add to the confusion, there’s the greatcoat, which – for all intents and functions – is only a means of referring to an overcoat that’s notably cumbersome, heavy and hard-wearing.
What To Look For When Shopping for An Overcoat?
For those who’re seeking to put money into an overcoat that you simply’ll put on for years to return, select a mode that’s 100 per cent wool and that has an honest weight to it (round 4lbs for many males).
“Overcoats made entirely of wool will keep you warm and can weather the storm without falling to pieces,” says Chris Gove, founding father of British menswear model Percival.
Alternatively, you would attempt a cashmere model, however not solely are these often eye-wateringly costly, they’re additionally prone to present put on on the cuffs and collar faster than a 100 per cent wool design would. Strive a wool-cashmere mix for those who simply can’t do with no little luxurious.
Regardless of being the ultimate factor you throw on earlier than heading outdoors, how an overcoat hangs off your physique shouldn’t be a last-minute thought.
“Fit is extremely important when deciding on an overcoat,” says Alex McCart, head of menswear shopping for at Reiss. “For those who’re to put on it over a go well with, it is very important guarantee that there’s sufficient room within the shoulders and waist to suit your blazer beneath. In addition to it being very uncomfortable, it could seem like the coat is just too small for you.
“For those who’re in search of one thing extra informal, then its greatest to attempt the dimensions down for a sleeker look, and one thing with a softer shoulder.”
Forking out for an excellent high quality overcoat could set you again financially, however that is an funding you’re positive to obtain a good-looking return on. However solely offering you put on it usually, which suggests getting your color alternative proper.
“Navy is going to look great with almost all of your wardrobe, however, don’t be afraid to try on a rich camel,” says McCart. “This will look equally as good with tailoring but also a great colour to dress down with denim.”
Just like the shirts, trousers and ties in your rotation, block colors needs to be your place to begin earlier than transferring on to extra attention-grabbing patterns akin to checks.
Whereas designers are always re-imagining the overcoat, including elbow patches, appliqué particulars, distinction collars and raglan shoulders, there are two major kinds to select from: single-breasted and double-breasted.
Single-breasted variations are extra minimal and clear, enabling them to be paired with every little thing out of your nine-to-five fits to a denims and Oxford shirt mixture on the weekend. Double-breasted overcoats, then again, have a formidable air of custom about them and pair extra simply with tailoring except worn unbuttoned and dressed down.
“Some of my favourite overcoat styles this season have been single-breasted belted styles,” says Frazer Goater, a private stylist at Harvey Nichols in London. “I think something with texture and a herringbone finish can help make a statement too.”
How To Put on An Overcoat
As you’ll possible have gathered by now, the overcoat is meant as an outer layer for put on in the course of the colder months. Many individuals suppose it’s merely the ultimate, winter-appropriate addition to a go well with, however this important has a lot extra potential.
For an off-the-cuff look impressed by the skinheads, attempt a coat with a trim-fitting gingham shirt, rolled-up acid wash denims, ribbed boot socks and a pair of chunky Dr Martens. For one thing that’s refined however not formal, put on it over a slim-fit blazer, jumper, white Oxford shirt and wool trousers, then end with Derbies.
“I would also try an overcoat layered over a hoodie or denim jacket with chinos and trainers to nail that ’90s style,” says menswear stylist Sarah Gilfillan, who additionally recommends you decide your type of overcoat relying in your top.
“If you’re a shorter guy, don’t overwhelm yourself with fabric and go for a neat, single-breasted, above the knee style. If you’re taller and a large build then you can afford to experiment with raglan sleeved styles and calf-length coats.”
Greatest Overcoat Manufacturers
A Day’s March
The minimize, high quality, and affordability of the garments on supply at Swedish menswear model A Day’s March have made it an under-the-radar favorite among the many menswear pack. Its overcoats aren’t any exception, providing up to date updates of conventional kinds with a shoulder-hugging match and infrequently produced utilizing wool sourced from historic Italian mills.
Purchase Now: £275.00
Premium excessive avenue model Reiss specialises in basic British type with out the waffle. It is smart, then, that it excels on the merely minimize overcoat, crafting the heritage staple out of a neat textured wool-blend in a contemporary, slim match. Seize a model in a light-weight, oatmeal shade of camel for a slick tackle this outerwear icon.
Purchase Now: £295.00
With regards to making garments, Hugo Boss has German engineering all the way down to a tee. Living proof: the model’s cashmere and wool-blend overcoats, which swap bells and whistles for easy, suit-like linings and notched lapels swiped straight from the tailoring handbook.
Purchase Now: £399.00
Marks & Spencer
For proof you don’t should skip a number of meals as a way to afford a top quality overcoat, look no additional than Marks & Spencer. The ever-consistent division retailer seems basic iterations constructed from wool spun on the celebrated Balli mill in Northern Italy in addition to extra trend-led and assertion takes.
Purchase Now: £129.00
Heritage model Jaeger has been perfecting its menswear for over 100 years, so you possibly can belief it to place in a fairly wonderful stab on the overcoat. Distinctive touches like suede underneath the collar and a bespoke straw jacquard for the liner elevate its super-soft cashmere mix coats above the gang.
Purchase Now: £359.00
Dubbed ‘The King of Cashmere’, Italian designer Brunello Cucinelli has been spinning the gentle stuff into luxurious garments for the reason that mid-‘80s. The brand’s overcoats strike a steadiness between unstructured kinds and a these with a extra inflexible minimize, in a sensible but fashionable color palette of sunshine greens and deep browns. Principally, outerwear doesn’t get significantly better than this.
Purchase Now: £5100.00
At Ted Baker, it’s what’s on the within that counts, so anticipate jazzy linings aplenty on the British model. Not that the surface has been forgotten, thoughts. Its overcoats are each shower-resistant and minimize barely cropped, which makes them extra flattering for shorter physique sorts.
Purchase Now: £359.00
With a listing of well-known wearers together with Sir Winston Churchill, Cary Grant, and John F Kennedy, it’s no understatement to say that Crombie is the godfather of the overcoat. The model is so synonymous with the three-quarter-length minimize that another labels usually title their variations a ‘Crombie’ coat. That’s what we name exhibiting the godfather some respect.
Purchase Now: £895.00
NN07 (which stands for ‘no nationality’) takes a worldwide method with its clothes. In consequence, overcoats by the Copenhagen-based label sit someplace between British formality with their good double-breasted minimize and the looser virtually unisex match extra in style amongst its fellow Scandinavian manufacturers. Preserve your outfit beneath slim for optimum impression.
Purchase Now: £400.00
With revered designer Hedi Slimane on the helm, luxurious style label Celine has been quietly stopping slim-fits falling to the underside of the style pile. Its overcoats are nonetheless minimize with some room, however the gentle shoulders introduced on by an relaxed raglan sleeve imply they work greatest with a sharper, slimmer match beneath.
Purchase Now: £2350.00
British division retailer John Lewis has the most effective assortment of menswear manufacturers round in the mean time. And being surrounded by the large boys has clearly rubbed off on its in-house label, leading to a number of extraordinarily wearable (and inexpensive) overcoats in a variety of army colors, together with ready-for-anything airforce blue.
Purchase Now: £200.00
In a listing dominated by British classicism, Parisian label Ami gives sufficient punch of color to make these 18th-century aristocrats blush. Orange, inexperienced and deep reds reign alongside extra impartial tones, all in an unstructured match which means they pair properly alongside informal streetwear items.
Purchase Now: £850.00
The Evolution Of The Overcoat
Previously used as a way of indicating (often increased) class and social standing, the overcoat discovered itself the topic of some severe re-appropriation within the 1950s, when the Teddy Boys began gleaning type inspiration from the Edwardian Period.
Worn with high-waisted, stovepipe trousers and chunky brogues or creepers, the Teds breathed new life into the silhouette, lending it a little bit rebelliousness.
Within the 1960s, as skinhead tradition started to seep out of the extra radical sectors of the disenfranchised British working class, the overcoat was as soon as once more given an all-new guise.
Spurred on by the Teds’ and mods’ reinterpretation of clothes historically related to the higher courses, many skinheads started to group overcoats with rolled-up denims, ‘bovver’ boots and sharply-cut verify shirts buttoned all the way in which to the highest.
Later, in the course of the early 1970s, the suedeheads – an offshoot of the skinhead subculture – would go on to completely embrace the silhouette, combining it with smarter apparel, akin to Prince of Wales verify fits and brogues.
It was additionally round this time that knee-length silhouettes actually gained traction because the extra versatile, sensible type, somewhat than the dramatic full-length variations that initially outlined the overcoat.
By the 1980s, the overcoat had made an almighty return to the mainstream, turning into a key piece within the energy dressing skilled’s wardrobe – usually minimize boxy, barely outsized and worn over the relaxed suiting made so in style by Italian designers like Giorgio Armani.
Now, given the #menswear era’s renewed curiosity in all issues tailoring, the overcoat has returned to the forefront of style.