Choosing your perfect winter coat

It’s the most important item you’ll buy this winter. But choosing your perfect winter coat is no small task. Your winter coat should be warm, stylish and versatile enough to wear to the pub or the office. And ideally, it will last longer than just one season.

Before you hit the shops, make sure you have read our five rules for finding your perfect winter coat.

1. Check the composition

For winter, you need something that will last at least a few months in some of the year’s harshest weather conditions. This means you need to look for a coat that is made from insulating fabrics such as wool or cashmere. Choose a style that has a little extra space inside so that you can layer up your sweaters and knitwear. And make sure any buttons/zips are not just decorative – you don’t want to be clinging to your lapels when the winter winds hit.

2. See if it’s adaptable

Ideally, your winter coat should be suitable for a number of different occasions. Does it suit a mizzly morning? A freezing afternoon? Or a lashing night out? And does it accessorise well with your current wardrobe? Look for a coat that can be dressed up or down with the right accessories.

3. Think about your silhouette

Like everything in fashion, the silhouette is everything. If you are tall and slim, add curves with a belted coat. If you are curvy, choose a slimming single-breasted coat in a dark colour. Shorter ladies should look for mid-length coats; while tall women can experiment with unusual shapes like the cocoon coat. Whatever you choose, make sure it works with your figure, and not against it.

4. Take it for a road-test

It’s easy to take a coat for a spin in a store, but to get a realistic view, you need to take it outside. Luckily, just about every store has a generous returns policy, so you can buy and return if it doesn’t feel right. Remember, you’ll be wearing your winter coat almost every day. Some fabrics can feel scratchy, tight or warm when you’re moving around, but catch them early and you’ll have time to find a new coat.

5. Think about the details

Everyone wants something different from their winter coat. You might want deep pockets to keep your hands warm; a hood that keeps the rain off; or a fur trim that gives you a daily shot of glamour. Think about the one detail that you can’t live without, and narrow down your search accordingly. Then all you have to do is choose the coat that makes you look good, and you’ll be ready for the snow!

Five ways to keep wearing your summer clothes in winter

It happens every year. You invest in an amazing summer wardrobe, then it basically rains for the rest of the year. But there are a few ways to keep wearing your summer clothes in winter. And you won’t be surprised to learn that layering plays a big part…

Read on for our five favourite ways to keep wearing your summer clothes in winter.

1. The slip dress

The 90s revival has given us a lot of great summer looks, but none have really taken off like the slip dress. Everyone from Gigi Hadid to Rihanna has been spotted in some version of a slip dress this year. The delicate spaghetti straps and light material make it the perfect sundress for fashionistas. But it’s not the most practical outfit for winter.

Wear it for longer by layering a polo-neck sweater in a contrasting colour underneath the dress. Black tights and chunky ankle boots will finish off the look.

2. Gingham

A stealth trend of the summer; gingham is rapidly overtaking plaid as the ‘off-duty pop star’ pattern of choice.
Luckily, it’s easy to wear in any weather. Wear your gingham shirt with denim shorts in the summer, and with jeans in the winter. Layer a simple cashmere sweater over the top for that preppy all-American vibe.

3. Florals

Floral prints are a hit every single summer. And this year’s best-selling floral prints have come in slightly darker hues that make them perfect for winter wear.

Grunge up your summer florals with black tights, platform boots, and an oversized woollen cardi.

4. The pleated midi skirt

The pleated midi skirt made a big comeback in 2017. In pinks, pastels, brights or metallics – they have been spotted at just about every party, festival and wedding this year.

Luckily, it’s easy to keep wearing your midi throughout the winter. To begin with, just swap out your vest top for a plain white shirt (tucked into the waistband, of course), or a slouchy sweater. Then add a ¾ length coat and a reasonably sized heel and you’re good to go!

5. Chiffon

Blame the Kardashian-Jenners for this one. See-through dresses threatened to go mainstream in 2017, while chiffon panelling suddenly appeared on all our clothes.

However, this is a surprisingly easy trend to alter for winter. And the secret is – you guessed it – layering! Try layering a plain t-shirt under a chiffon top, or wear a chiffon dress underneath a your favourite ‘going out’ dress to give it an instant update.