Great news, if you’re choosing a new winter coat, there are no rules!
By Maureen Mancini Amaturo
Great news, if you’re choosing a new winter coat, there are no rules! From classic to full-out crazy, from neutrals to vivids, from evergreen silhouettes to eccentric shapes, it’s coats gone wild. Well, maybe there is one rule: balance and proportion still count. So, balance out the classic and the edgy. If you choose a classic shape, i.e., knee-length belted coat, be adventurous with textures, colors, or prints. If you choose a statement coat, keep the rest of your outfit simple and classic.
Here are a few trends to help you button up your overcoat.
- Whether oversized or sleek, coat styles are more expressive this year.
- Sculptural elements — asymmetric fronts and hemlines — are in vogue.
- Capes — the statement coat with class that’s functional and fun — are back. Above the knee, at the knee, or longer, with or without a hood, any which way is right.
- Semi-circles are visible in rounded shoulders or curves created by exaggerating the waist and hips with a belt, the trapeze coat with a full circle-skirt effect.
- If you have broad shoulders and long legs, the box-cut style is ideal. Works well over pencil skirts, sheath dresses, or pants.
Bone Up on The Classics
- That 70s hit, the knee-length belted coat, lends a retro vibe to the season. It pairs well with heeled pumps and flats, and is great over pants.
- The black military coat — a huge hit this season — looks rock/punk with studded boots and jeans, and glamorous with heels, pants, and silky tops or dresses.
- Trench. Watch for a few new touches, including luxurious fabrics and three-quarter sleeves. Crumpled and loose or fitted and sleek, black or beige, no trench will let you down. Wear trenches with ballet shoes, pumps, ankle boots, or high boots. Of-the-moment trench: accessorize with lace, leather, or bright colors. Check out the new models from Victoria Beckham, Ralph Lauren, Betsey Johnson, and Michael Kors.
The Color Wheel
The real news is pale pink, but all shades of pink, from faint to fuschia are fashion forerunners. For the low-key, the news is classic beige. Alongside these two top picks: dark, intense navy. To round out the winter coat palette, the shades coloring the newest winter coats are burgundy and vibrant yellow, red, purple, and white. Plus different shades of metallic, all over or as trims.
- Shake up monochromatic beige, brown, and black looks with a strong punch of red.
- Leopard prints look fantastic with black & white. If you feel like adding color, stick to just one. Don’t overcrowd the look.
Lines to Look for
- Extended shoulder lines
- Trapeze silhouettes
- Sharp corners at shoulders or hemlines
- Belted coats that draw the eye to the waistline. If you’re the parka-type, update your look with a cinched/elasticized waist version in a bold new color.
- Hemline: this season’s most popular lengths are middle-of-the-knee or midi.
Think on the Wild Side With Patterns and Prints
- Among the big animal prints, leopard leads the pack. Be on the hunt for zebra, tiger, snake, and crocodile. And they’re roaming wild in faux versions, too. Check out the animal print coats Blumarine and Stella McCartney have out there.
- Checks, the monochrome version as in vintage tablecloth
- Hounds-tooth and tweed
- Textured printed materials
- Metallic threads.
- Unusual closures: buckles, asymmetrical zippers, oversized collars
- Exciting and unexpected details: leather trims, metallic cuffs, fur/faux fur collars and cuffs, and feathers
- Texture, as in quilting, nubby, looped wools, shearling peeking out from sleeves and neckline, leather mixed with wool. The shearling-leather combo was a hit before Amelia Earhart made it famous, and it still is.
- Denim and wool. Try a classic denim jacket over a long (even to-the-knees long) cuddly sweater. Add an infinity scarf. Multi-layer looks are big.
- Pelerines: a short, just below the shoulder cape, sometimes with longer points in the front. Once popular with Victorians, it’s a trendy new layering look. n