With Autumn/Winter now truly upon us – I know this because I have to have my heating on everyday now – it is time to take a look at some of the investment pieces you can add to your wardrobe this year. Investment items are exactly that, items which may cost a little more than the basics you wear everyday, but should last a long time and you get infinite use out of them – at least until the fabric starts to degrade. They should be timeless items that transcend through seasons and trends, in order to give you the most wear possible out of each item. When you are younger you might of had your Mum buy you your “winter coat” each year, the idea being it will last you all the way through the colder months and you wear it with EVERYTHING!
This is the idea I want to try and get in your head. For those on a budget, picking the right piece of outerwear for the A/W seasons is imperative, as it will sculpt your look each and everyday. You need to invest wisely, and you need to do it right first time. Some of you may be lucky enough to afford 2 or even 3 great pieces of outerwear each season, but with the way the economy is at the moment, I am sure they are few and far between.
I have started with the peacoat because it is an item which I still do not see on a regular basis whilst I am out and about. I see a lot of macs/trenches, and even thick wool over coats, but the peacoat seems to be a rarity. Personally I love them, and they have been making a big comeback over the last couple of years within men’s fashion.
So first things first… what is a pea coat? Well the peacoat is generally made of heavy wool which means it is perfectly suited to the colder months and keeping you warm. They were originally worn by sailors in the European Navies and so have roots firmly within the whole military trend. They are characterised by their broad lapels, double breasted front (two rows of vertical buttons to do the coat up), large wooden or metal buttons and normally have vertical or angled pockets.
The reason I love the peacoat is because of its versatility and ability to transcend through seasons. The versatility comes from the fact that it is generally a smart garment which can raise your outfit a notch instantly. The clean lines (as with all military influenced items), fitted cut, and double breasted button up front keeps your look clean and refined, whilst allowing you to dress it up or down.
You can pair a peacoat with jeans and a simple t-shirt in order to create a relaxed outfit which still has that differential to other males wearing similar items. The jacket is definitely a statement piece, because the double breasted front and fact that they are still a less well known item means that it stands out right away. You can also go the other way though and pair it with razor sharp chinos/trousers, a crisp shirt and a great pair of Chelsea boots in order to give off that traditional English “Mod” or “Indie” look.
The point I am trying to make is that the peacoat will adapt to any item you throw at it. Smart enough to be paired with trousers, a shirt and shoes; it is also able to be paired with basic tees, trainers, casual shirts and even chunky boots due to its roots within the military.
So how can it transcend seasons? Well firstly the traditional colours for a peacoat are black, navy and grey. As you should all know by now, these colours will go with pretty much any other colour and should form the basis of any versatile males wardrobe. They are also adaptable to multiple trends, especially those which are prominent each and every year. Military is a big trend year after year in men’s fashion and this type of jacket can be used with military shirts, boots and colours. You will even find a lot of peacoats which have military detailing incorporated such as epaulettes. They also can move right into Spring/Summer with nautical being a big trend for the past 3 years. Originally worn by sailors after all, you can easily pair these with striped t-shirts, deck shoes and light coloured chinos.
As I mentioned before the peacoat has been making waves within men’s fashion over the last few years, with celebrities using them regularly as well as having their place within fashion editorials and even on the runways. Here is a collection of images which utilise the peacoat:
What you will notice is that there are so many varieties of peacoats available these days. You have different lengths with the standard being just below waist length. However you can get your hands on longer versions (for winter if you need it) and shorter cropped versions which would work equally as well in S/S as they would A/W.
There are also different cuts and materials available. Some have a real slimline and fitted cut, which look a lot more like a double breasted blazer or suit jacket. Others stick to the traditional thick heavy wool and as such, are much more suited to the colder months. If you were looking for an investment piece then I would stick to just below waist length, in a heavy wool that will last, and go for navy, grey or black colour ways. I have featured my two recommendations for the season first which are the Dr. Denim Lance Wool Peacoat (first two featured) in black and grey colour ways. At only £140 I think for the price the styling is perfect and you can match them with pretty much anything in your wardrobe. The ASOS Black collection double breasted trench also deserves a shout out at just £160.
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