Wardrobe Essentials: Winter Coats

Undeniably a style essential in any fashion closet, the perfect outerwear can be the ideal start to any autumn/winter capsule wardrobe. Whether your style is chic and polished or effortless and edgy, you will no doubt find a statement coat from this season’s collections to complement your look. The menswear Autumn/Winter 2013 catwalk shows saw the update of classic coats with a contemporary twist. Whilst we saw an array of coats come down the runway, there were three styles par excellence which stole the limelight to become our editor’s top choice of coats to wear this winter: the oversized coat, the belted coat, and the parka.

The Oversized Coat

The iconic saying “the bigger, the better” will surely become the favourite catchphrase this season with the choice of elegant oversized coats. As seen on the runway shows of Louis Vuitton, Alexander McQueen, and Jil Sander (among others), the oversized coat is the latest addition to the range of men’s tailored separates. Choose an oversized coat with distinct tailoring such as that of a pea coat or a double breasted coat – with or without lapels – to keep your look modern yet polished. Finish the look with minimalist neutral accessories, such as a monochrome colour palette to top off an oversized grey coat with black lapels (à la Alexander McQueen), so that the coat itself is the centre piece of your outfit. The oversized coat is the perfect style to sport with nonchalance over your suit and tie for a fashionably late entrance to your next meeting.

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The Belted Coat

The enduring appeal of a coat which is both practical and in vogue makes the belted coat the ultimate off-duty update for any flâneur cruising in the city. Inevitably taking inspiration from the classic British heritage style with its equestrian undertone, its reappearance at the Autumn/Winter 2013 runway shows certainly came as no surprise. The styles seen at Salvatore Ferragamo, Balenciaga, and Lanvin offer the perfect alternative for the classic trench coat. Think leisure and wear with denim and your favourite pair of ankle boots or boat shoes and chinos for a splendid stroll around the town; this is the new style for horseplay.

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The Parka

Often cited as the ideal trans-seasonal outerwear piece, this season sees a play on texture with its collection of parka coats. Traditionally known as the attire of Eskimos and military servicemen, its rising popularity during the 1960s Mod era has since rendered the parka an iconic status in the world of fashion. Designed with a lightweight fabric, as seen at the Bespoken collection, the parka can be the perfect way to update your outfit with a casual street style edge. Or take inspiration from the après-ski style parka, as seen at Louis Vuitton, which will surely take you from the slopes to your office in style and in comfort. Versatile, chic and comfortable, the parka is a perennial style staple. And the new must have hue this season? Orange.

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So now you are ready to brave the chill of winter with our edit of the top three styles of coats to wear this season. Whichever style you choose to flaunt (or even try all three), the key is to keep your silhouette simple and let your coat do the talking.