How to choose a peacoat?

Selections the 7 December 2012 by Joe the "tire-remover"

Peacoat’s origins hold no more secrets for you, let’s now see what are the key points that have to be checked when considering buying a peacoat. We will focus on color, materials, size, length, details and style. The next episode of this series will give you outfits ideas to wear peacoats according to your style.

Color

Traditionally, peacoats are navy. It still remains a good choice being an easy matching color. Black peacoats can be found as well, but in most of the cases this isn’t a wise choice. One tells black matches every color: it is a bit exaggerated, as black soon becomes a boring color (in particular for pale skins). You want to go for another color than navy, then think about grey.

caban-schott

From Schott

Material

Peacoats were originally made of wool. There’s a good reason: wool is a natural fiber protecting well from the cold and breathable. Wool also protects from the rain with its ability to absorb humidity (actually, it can absorb around 30% its weight unnoticed). American peacoats are often made of a wool and nylon mix (25%) used for waterprootfing. Other synthetic materials are usually used to lower the manufacturing bill. For your information: 1 kilogram of wool costs between €10 and €15 when cotton is €2-€3 and even less for synthetic materials.

mango-peacoat

From Mango
(80% wool with a good fit for £150 is a good deal)

Size

A bad sizing is the numer one problem regarding style. You won’t look stronger with a XL if you are a M (just a penguin with sloping shoulders). To choose your coat properly, here are few key points to check:

peacoat-points

From Burberry

Length

Peacoats are short coats. So they are especially recommended for smaller persons. It allows keeping a good proportion between the bust and the legs length. Ideally, the peacoat length may cut you in two equal parts: 50% coat, 50% legs. Such proportion will keep your silhouette well-balanced.

norse-projects-peacoat

From Norse Projects

Details

Once you have a precise idea about the construction, the size and length, you can focus on different details. Of course lower budgets €100 may review some requirements. Anyway here are the focus points:

- buttons
- fine seams
- lining
- inside pockets

balibaris-coat

From Balibaris
(100% wool + removeable collar + well-finished + €350 = good deal)

STYLE

1. The traditional peacoat

Whatever it is European (Armor Lux, Gloverall) or American (Schott, Fidelity) the traditional peacoat is always made of a thick wool. With it you would look like a real sailor, and it will keep you warm. Clearly this is our top choice considering a timeless coat style. Rather bet on quality to keep it for years! Around €250

fidelity peacoat

From Fidelity
2. The cheap peacoat
It is made of wool, mixed with synthetic materials and finiting touches are crude. It can be found from most mainstream stores (Topman, H&M, Zara). Check at the label to get a true idea of what you can expect. There are usually no surprises: it is cheap beacause the wool percentage is lower due to a low-cost production. Between €100 and €200. Good deal: as peacoats have a millitary history, check at your nearest army surplus.

topman-coat

From Topman
3. The creator peacoat

Peacoats are a constant inspiration source for creators, season after season it is revisited by high-street brands like APC, Folk, Norse Projects, Our Legacy or by great designers such as Alexander McQueen, Balmain, Kenzo, Raf Simons. From €300 to €500 for the first category and most of the time over €1000 for the second.

caban-createur

From Raf Simons (*dreaming*)

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