Styling Sense: Coats

Who else thought that moving to Exeter would feel like being on a constant holiday? I thought I’d be having regular BBQs on the beach and I’d never be without a 99 in my hand – I’ll take an extra flake please. Instead what I have found with southern weather is that it in fact rains about three hundred and sixty four days of the year and you can only have a BBQ if you like your steak medium-soggy.

One wet Monday morning my friends and I were discussing the dilemma of dressing for this weather. Hiking boots were, I’m afraid to say, mentioned along with a ‘waterproof’ to which I had to confess I’m much more of a style over practicality kind of girl…I say confess but I don’t think anyone was at all surprised by this comment, do I really talk about my wardrobe that much? I stand by the idea however that style shouldn’t suffer just because of the weather. If anything quite the opposite.


Photo Credit: Tumblr

I am a massive fan of coats. Coats and shoes, as I have grown up being told, should always be invested in. And when you wake up to rain every other day of the week you want to know that your cute tartan skirt isn’t going to get soaked as you trek up Cardiac Hill. In all honesty I’m all for raincoats. But you’ve got to keep it sassy; opt for one of the bright festival-ready macs from Miss Selfridge or ASOS. You’ll be spoilt for choice as they come in every colour under the sun (or cloud in this case) and their vinyl materials can battle the fiercest rain. They are so cute and you will always stand out on campus. Also, they aren’t a bad investment for the later April showers. Your rain coat can stay on as they generally keep you quite cool once you no longer have that Christmas knit on underneath.

Or try the classic parka which is always a good shout as they never seem to go out of fashion and you can find them on a budget too. I have a simple H&M one that fought valiently through my fresher’s winter. The majority will come with a detachable faux fur collar or trim for the hood, making them more versatile and allowing you to mix it up, which is great with coats as they’re worn so often they aren’t something you’d get bored of easily. Accessorising is great for preventing this and something as simple as a collar allows you to play around. They always look cool and casj, and the general khakis and navies mean that they go fab with absolutely anything and you never need to think about coordinating.

My absolute favourite rain chic coat however, has to be the trench. Perhaps my adoration for Audrey Hepburn is what initially led to my purchasing one but I have never looked back since. It makes me feel so stylish no matter what I’m wearing underneath (although that is, of course, stylish too) and keeps me totally dry in the wet weather, particularly as they are often cut at the knee and we all know the pain of wet jeans. Like the parka, they usually come in much more neutral colours, which gives them quite a sophisticated feel. They are great for showing off your figure to as they draw in at the waist usually with a thick belt and so are perfect for accentuating an hourglass figure.

Coats1. ASOS Clear Rain Mac – £35

2. Zara – Short Trench – £69.99

3. H&M – Padded Parka – £39.99

All three coats are completely different yet each look equally stylish. Whilst a mac can make such a bold statement with colour or pattern the parka has a relaxed air and the trench sings sophistication. All three allow for personality whilst maintaining practicality. The rain really doesn’t have to affect you showing off your style. Coats can complete an outfit just as much as they can detract from them. When it rains see it as a chance to show off your wardrobe not hide it. And I of beg you, leave the hiking boots for hiking.

Harriet Cotmore

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