Photo courtesy H&M
Okay, I'll admit it - I have way too many coats. My mom, smart thing that she is, got a full scholarship to university, yet she worked anyway because that's how she rolled. And so, because she didn't have to pay for books or tuition or anything really (grrr...), she bought really beautiful coats, from gorgeous fur-trimmed stunners, to classic camel beauties. She kept these toppers in our attic closet while we were growing up and since nobody was wearing them, my sister and I eventually adopted them as our own. Real vintage. Naturally cool. Done.
After graduation, I got a job in the marketing department at Danier. After two years (with a rocking employee discount and a clothing allowance), you might be just getting by, but you end up with a rather impressive collection of leather jackets. Add to that my obsession with outerwear and now, I have a problem so substantial that I'm just waiting for a call from Hoarders. My big issue? I'm sentimental. My coat collection pretty much tells my life story; first big purchase with my very first paycheque (cream & blue plaid), first job interview coat (authoritative red), the tacky Budweiser uniform jacket I wore when I worked for a promotional company and met a very cute boy, and the soft grey coat I wore when I got engaged to that boy on a snowy December night. A good coat not only protects you from the elements but also makes that all-important first impression - I swear it was my mom's red, boiled wool coat, not my CV, that once scored me a job at a magazine.
It's time to take stock, take charge and take some of my ratty old toppers to the giveaway bin. In their place, I'm going to invest in one good coat to see me through the next several winters. Just please don't make me throw out my engagement coat (or any of my mom's coats for that matter). Baby steps?
Whether you have too many coats or not nearly enough, we've put together our Top 10 Toppers from White Oaks Mall to help you face the elements in enviable style. x
1. THE SHOWSTOPPER
The Coat: Asymmetrical-Zip Coat, $59.95, H&M
Why It's a Top 10: The clean white, exposed zippers, and faux fur details make this coat a stand-out in a sea of black.
Best For: Those who don't mind a little maintenance. Since it's white, keep this as your party coat - perfect for a fun fête or anytime you want to edge up your outfit (just steer clear of the red wine, for obvious reasons)
2. THE INVESTMENT
The Coat: Mallia for Danier Belted Camel Coat, $1,000, Danier
Why It's a Top 10: The made-in-Canada Mallia for Danier collection combines luxurious Italian fabrics with impeccable tailoring, making these coats total keepers. This floor-length duster style will keep you warm and chic for countless seasons to come.
Best For: Anyone looking for a timeless classic and willing/able to invest. Commitment-phobes should steer clear since the coat will be with you for the long haul.
3. THE AMPED-UP CLASSIC
The Coat: Quilted Trench, $199, Club Monaco
Why It's a Top 10: A good trench will always be in style, yet a basic cotton version just won't cut it once the weather turns. The quilted fabric of this Club Monaco version adds both warmth and dimension to the classic silhouette we know and love.
Best For: Women ready for a sartorial update. This style will see you through everything from a job interview to a weekend brunch with your favourite girls.
4. THE BRIGHT YOUNG THING
The Coat: Yellow Toggle Coat, $69.95, H&M
Why It's a Top 10: The vibrant yellow, fun faux-fur collar and toggle details are a sweet, playful way to brighten any winter day.
Best For: A fun-loving girl who doesn't like to blend in.
5. THE CASUAL GO-TO
The Coat: Hooded Military Parka, $128, American Eagle Outfitters
Why It's a Top 10: This coat is rough, tumble, and ready for anything, whether you team it with distressed denim on the weekend or a sequined skirt & pointy-toed pumps for a fun night out.
Best For: Trend-savvy stylistas with a decidedly laid-back 'tude.
6. THE CROPPED CUTIE
The Coat: Numero Inc. Short Down Jacket, $399, Boathouse
Why It's a Top 10: Insanely cozy and the perfect shade of red, this sweet little bomber will keep you looking cute all season long
Best For: Outdoorsy types who love to face the elements head on.
7. THE ALL-WEATHER WARMER
The Coat: Down-Filled Hooded Jacket, $160, Smart Set
Why It's a Top 10: As a mom, this coat is a winter must-have. It's long enough to keep you covered, super flattering thanks to angled pockets and a waist-cinching belt, and unbelievably cozy (think down-filled and hooded). Plus, it's gloriously mashine-washable. Genius!
Best For: The active girl whose daily to-do's include dog-walking, trips to the park, and the occasional toboggan ride.
8. THE GET-YOU-EVERYWHERE FLATTERER
The Coat: Plus-Size Fleece Jacket, $80, Reitmans
Why It's a Top 10: This coat has a streamlined silhouette, flattering angled pockets and a drawstring waist, all in a slimming black package. My favourite part, though? The oversized collar with cool ribbing detail to elevate this piece from simple to standout.
Best For: Curvy girls who need a great transitional jacket.
9. THE ELEGANT UPDATE
The Coat: Long Cabernet Chesterfield Coat for Petites, $239, Cleo
Why It's a Top 10: It's sophisticated, well-made and a super current shade of bordeaux. Best of all, the simple silhouette won't overwhelm a petite frame.
Best For: Petite women who would rather look cool than cute.
10. THE BUMP-FRIENDLY BELTED COAT
The Coat: Double-Breasted Wool Maternity Coat, $149, Thyme Maternity
Why It's a Top 10: It's a classic, with it's double-breasted style and belted waist. Plus, the wool blend and longer length will go with everything and will keep you (and your little bundle) protected for the winter.
Best For: Expectant moms who, try as they might, can no longer do up their regular winter coats.