I would have fared very well in war times. I’m frugal, I’m good at mending things and I’m not too shabby making meals out of whatever I have in the pantry at the time. I’m also a bit of a winter coat buying savant.
I’m pretty bloody good at making decent clothing purchases in general, but I’ve really done well on the winter coat stakes in the last few years, when I follow my proper winter coat buying formula. Back when our grandparents were young, people tended to have one good winter coat that they’d wear for a decade or two without replacing it. It would be a good quality, well made, warm coat and it would most likely be passed around family members until it literally fell apart.
I had a gorgeous coat in my early 20s with a fur collar my auntie gave me when her mother in law passed away. It was wasn’t her daughters’ style so it was given to me. I wore that forty year old coat for ten more years until it literally fell apart at the seams and my tailor told me it wasn’t fixable anymore. That’s what you want in a quality coat. For at least two people to get a few decades out of it.
I’m under no delusions that you can still buy items like this. I think some modern items will accidentally last decades but I don’t think many companies plan for that to happen. They like you to replace things as often as what is considered reasonable. It’s how they make their money. I bought this coat about 5 years ago from Sportscraft and it’s already been a pretty great purchase. It was about $400 at the time but I just knew it was a good buy. It’s 100% wool outer, warm as toast and it’s a classic style and looks great over almost anything.
Coat from Sportscraft – You know what? This coat has been so ace, I wouldn’t hesitate to buy another a quality coat from Sportscraft
Dress from COS
Boots from Ecco
Tights from Big W
Tips For Buying An Awesome Winter Coat
1. Buy it a size or two larger than your regular size
This is a size 16 which is a little bigger than I normally buy but I like to have extra space under my coats so I can add layers if it gets really cold. I live in Melbourne and it’s one of the coldest places to live in Australia. It sometimes even gets below zero at night. I can hear all the Canadians laughing at me right now about how I think below zero is cold but this coat sees me through some of the chilliest days in Oz. Note: This coat is not warm enough for Canada-style winters. You need some kind of down jacket for that situation.
2. Spend some money
Cheap coats suck. I’ve had several in my life and they’re just rubbish. The inner lining rips apart, they don’t sit right, the seams are often bumpy and weird and I swear I had a cheap coat once that smelt like grass and the smell NEVER WENT AWAY, no matter how many times I had it cleaned. It just constantly smelt like I slept in a barn. It was weird. If you can get a quality second hand coat (I literally bought a leather jacket for $20 the other day from Vinnies) absolutely go for it but you should get the best quality you can, which usually means forking out some cash. I used to buy a $100 t0 $150 coat every year or so because they needed replacing that often. Since I started spending $300 plus on coats I don’t replace them anywhere near as often. I bought a down jacket from Muji a few years ago for $150 and it’s been good but this is the fourth season I’ve worn it and it’s starting to sit a bit funny and the duck down doesn’t settle properly in it anymore. I do wonder if I forked out the $600 for the Icebreaker version if I’d be having this problem. I’m thinking probably not.
3. Go with a classic colour
A few years ago baby pink coats were all the rage and I was super keen to get one but I held off for two reasons. 1. Baby pink is not a colour I ever wear and 2. that makes it a fad colour for me and it just wouldn’t stand the test of time. This charcoal grey looks rad with everything and if I want to add a seasonal colour (like baby pink or this season’s maroon) I can chuck a scarf over the top of it and look totally on trend. If I happen to be caring about looking trendy which I usually don’t.
4. Make sure it’s comfortable
When I bought this coat I was tossing up between this one and another one that had an amazing Japanese structural collar. This collar was incredible and totally my style but it was really stiff and kept rubbing under my chin. So not cool. I didn’t buy for this exact reason because I knew I wouldn’t wear the damn thing if it was uncomfortable. I can have a nap in this coat and be perfectly comfortable. Good life choice.
5. Make sure it’s warm
I went on my first overseas trip when I was 19 and took a cheap coat I bought from maybe Supre or something and I frooze my ass off. My cheap little coat only had 2 buttons (because fashion) and was fine for dashing around Canberra in my heated car but I nearly died when I was waiting on tube platforms in the London winter. Plastic coats are not warm. You need wool. And thermals underneath if it’s super cold.
This outfit was worn for a day of Crochet Coach biz dev, post office trips, client work and day dreaming about having a sleep in in my own bed tomorrow. I travel a lot and I love it but sometimes you just end up craving a lovely day in your own house where you don’t have to rush or go anywhere. I’m out for dinner with mate tonight and then tomorrow it’s all about that magic sleep in.