Charity / Fashion

Outerwear as Outerwear – A Coat Obsession

Do you remember that trend of “Underwear as Outerwear”, hideous wasn’t it. Well this is the complete opposite… thank God!

I have a problem with coats, not a problem with them as in I don’t like them, a problem with them as in I love them, too much. I can’t resist them! And being a charity shop forager such as I am, every coat I come across is a complete bargain, and it becomes very difficult to resist. I have to remember the painful groans of my wardrobe rail as it dies a slow death from overwork in order to stop me from buying them. Now I only ever buy a coat if I am going to give another one away.

This is a very good policy (P.S. it doesn’t just work for coats!). Before you buy anything, you have to think what you would throw out to make room for it. This ensures that you really do love the item you’re about to purchase, it stops your wardrobe from becoming unmanageably crammed, meaning that you can’t even remember what you own let alone see it! You end up just re-wearing your washing basket because you can’t browse your own wardrobe, and that is bad. You don’t always have to throw something out, but it ensures that the garment is worthy enough for your wardrobe. With that in mind, I’ll be doing a “Stuff what I bought, and stuff what I’m donating to make room” post later this month.

Those of you familiar with my blog may have read my recent post where I found an almost direct replacement for a treasured coat that had become stained, you can read it here. Well, good news everyone, after a concerted effort, I have sufficiently removed the stain and have begun wearing the coat again, which means that there is still a lovely size 12 in Banchory for someone to purchase.

Coats are what people see first and foremost, especially going in to winter. You can wear whatever you like underneath them. Baggy t shirt and ripped jeans? Feel like a slob? Need to buy milk from Asda? Throw on your most fabulous coat, a pair of heels and some sunglasses to automatically go from grungy to glamorous.

Here are my pick of my favourite coats from these past few weeks:

Principles petite mac, size 12, £15.99 found in PDSA, Scott Street, Perth – all buttons were present, just not visible

Principles have done well here with a gorgeous twist on the classic mac. I love the navy trim detail, it has a nautical feel that you know will be top of the style stakes come spring time. The 60s style buttons are also very chic.

Principles macs of this length and style are £50. Saving = £34.99

Ted Baker belted coat, size 10, £20 found in The British Heart Foundation, Union Street

This pastel yellow Ted Baker coat is gorgeous, I love the patterned fabric, and the colour is so light and playful, perfect for early spring when you just can’t wait for the sun to come out but the days are still a little frosty. I find that this coat reminds me of ice cream and you don’t get much cooler than that. BOOM BOOM. Sorry, terrible joke.

Ted Baker coats of this length and weight are £249. Saving = £229

Max Mara wool coat, size 20, £10.99, found in British Heart Foundation, Union Street, Aberdeen

This is a classic black double breasted overcoat, you can’t go wrong. Sorry, I seem to have skipped a really important detail… MAX MARA!!!!!! For £10.99!!!! Normally I would say that bigger sizes should stay away from double breasted jackets or coats as it has a way of making you look broader but the detailing is minimal and unfussy here, perfect for an androgynous style. Pair with sky high heels get those legs and ankles on show to keep it feminine.

Max Mara coats start at £850. Saving = £839

While we’re on the subject…

Max Mara coat, size 12, £15.99 found in The British Heart Foundation, Union Street, Aberdeen

This Max Mara coat was gorgeous, although I couldn’t work out the purpose of one of the buttons! The one that sits up the top like a third nipple, yeah, that one… what the hell? I couldn’t fasten anything to it, or it to anything! I guess it might have been the spare just sown on for safe keeping by the charity shop, but the stitching seemed very similar to the other buttons, so honestly, I just didn’t know. The pattern of this was too similar to my Oasis coat, and it was a little big for me, so I didn’t get this. But boy was it tempting.

Max Mara coat RRP £850. Saving = £834

J by Jasper Conran coat, size 10, £12.99, Barnardos, Union Street

This cute and girly heavy knit is sumptuous, and the ladies in Barnardos have styled it up very well with super cute accessories (not included in the price obviously). I love the chunky pipe work and the fabric has a ‘knit’ look to it which puts this in the more casual coat category. A mid thigh length like this looks much better with trousers rather than dresses or skirts in my opinion, otherwise the layers look disjointed.

I’m going to underestimate the RRP of this at £80. Saving = £67

Asos fur coat, size 8, £14.99 found in Barnardos, Union Street, Aberdeen

Oh how I kick myself for not trying this on, and buying it. At first I thought that an 8 wouldn’t fit so I didn’t try it, and then I thought that maybe the fur was too ‘out there’ anyway and I’d struggle to find a place to wear it, but in truth I think that with the right amount of pizazz and ‘yes I know I look like I’ve killed 14 creatures of differing varieties and stitched them together in a way that was inspired by Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein but I don’t care’ attitude this would have been amazing. I might have even had to invest in some leather trousers to go with it. This may make a re-appearance later on, for reason’s I’m too secretive to tell you now 😉

Asos fur coats from this season are £80. Saving = £65

Principles coat, size 12, £14.99 found in PDSA, Holburn St, Aberdeen

And so finally we read the last item, a beautiful Principles herringbone coat. The collar has a slight natural pop to it and gracefully caresses the back of your neck. The pockets are simple and uncluttered. It had a gorgeous A-line cut to is that sat just on the knee, very Kate Middleton. This is perfect with a dress or skirt and would look incredibly lady-like. As a 12 it was too big for me and I was truly gutted. I’ve got about 5 coats I would have donated to make room for this fabulous one. But that’s the down side of charity shopping, if it’s not your size, you can’t just go through the rail to find another one.

Principles knee length coat RRP £100. Saving = £85

So I hope you enjoyed my tour of “The Coats of Northern Scotland”. Because, after all, up here we need them!


One thought on “Outerwear as Outerwear – A Coat Obsession

  1. Hubba hubba – those coats are absolute beauts!

    I have exactly the same ‘problem’ – too many beautiful coats around at really low prices – it would be a shame – A CRYING SHAME to leave them to languish.

    I’m adopting the one-in-one-out policy as my wardrobe situation is getting ridiculous! xx

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