Suddenly those down-filled, multi-layered winter coats look a lot more convincing on the shopfloor, don’t they?
After weeks of glancing at the heavens and cursing the mild weather, retailers can finally unleash the big-ticket outerwear as we mere punters awake to that wintry chill and curse the utility companies’ greed as we turn the boiler to max and watch our bank accounts dwindle.
Now I’m a mix of decidedly Anglo-Saxon heritage and hairy Irish stock, so I don’t even feel the cold unless the thermometer has plummeted to on-piste levels, but my fellow commuters are finally swaddling up for winter and in terms of men’s coats, they’re a mixed bunch.
For the casual brigade, sporty nylons and padded gilets seem to be doing the job for the kids, often layered over a thick hoodie, while the 20 to 30-somethings are wearing leather or PU jackets slathered in biker details. At the more mature end, an anonymous blend of utility detailing features on padded canvas jackets and multi-pocket parka updates.
For the smarter worker, there is yet more variety. A whole host of double-breasted options come in truncated proportions with naval-inspired collars, genuinely ocean-ready reefers, slim-lined macs, and the down-filled quilted jackets. Crombie-style and military-detailed woollen coats are chiming with the trend for authentic heritage-fuelled British looks.
In all, it’s a glorious variety and I haven’t even mentioned duffles, classic parkas or the continued resurgence of Barbour. Certainly there’s plenty of looks that still seem relevant enough for retailers to get their teeth into for the Christmas season. Commercially speaking, there is one detail that unites them all. The colour – or rather the lack of it. Black has dominated male outerwear for yet another winter.
- Stephen Spear is assistant menswear editor at Drapers