And so to another coat. Sorry about that - in my defence, it is bloody freezing out there! This one though, I haven't written about before - mostly because I bought it just the other week.
The middle of January (the 20th to be exact, fact fans) heralds my birthday, which for the past few years has meant a sale treat. Last year it was the Christopher Raeburn bomber, and this year I surpassed myself and actually bought myself 2 coats in the sales.
This particular one though, as with so much sale shopping (right?) was an accident. I've been a bit of a fan of Ben Sherman over the last few years, as their range has matured to become a sort of junior Albam (that occasionally goes to a rave, rather than constant dull art openings). They've expanded their offering to include some really great things, that are chock full of detail and very reasonably priced.
So for the last few months, before the Sales and as they progressed, I had my eye on a black watch Tartan parka, osensibly to replace my student/miner chic one. On their website, it looks bloody fabulous - tailored in the right places, smart and just the right thing to chuck on over anything to keep toasty warm. In store though, it was another matter. The cut was all wrong on me, too tight at the neck, and with a proper trad parka fishtail hemline, as well as a boxy hood, that combined to give it a touch too much of Italian exchange student for me. A valuable lesson learned there - buying online can often prove fatal.
But with the purse strings opened by a previous Liberty bargain (of which more soon) and the shopping lust well and truly out, couple with Ben Sherman's bargainous sale markdowns, I was determined to make a purchase. Just not sweatshirts (anyone that knows me knows that I already have waaaaay too many!) So I checked out their coats and found this beauty. It's a little similar to the B Store one I bought a few months back on eBay, but made from a sturdier wool, and cut impeccably, as was pointed out to me by one of the menswear designers at work. This coat has a half-raglan sleeve; so raglan at the back of the shoulder, and straight at the front. this gives it the comfort and informality of a casual coat, but also the sharper shoulder shape of a smarter piece.
Unlike the parka, its pockets are in exactly the right place (hand height, durrrr), and the checked wool is clearly not from a 99p shop at the end of Brick Lane. I've taken to wearing it in a kind of Mod-ish way, with the top button done up and the rest free, creating a great a-line shape. It's rapidly become the go-to coat, despite not being as warm as the parka.
Anyway, a little insight there. I've got a few articles brewing post-LCM (and the rest of the menswear shows; just fired off my Paris report), so I'll try and keep a little more regularly updated. But definitely worth scouring the end of the sale. This jacket was knocked down from £195 to £78. £78! That's the price of a jumper in most places. If you get paid Friday, go and have a scout round those sad-looking sale racks and see what you can turn up; there's plenty left to be found if you look hard enough...
Check, mate indeed.