A Coat for the Meanest of Winters
Again, I’m not much of a reblogger, but it’s hard to not reblog a photo of such a wonderful garment. This is what’s known as a “Guards coat,” which is a style of overcoat that takes its name from what English Officers of the Guard used to wear. It’s a “city” coat, which means it’s slightly orientated towards business, rather than leisure. Back in the day, men of a certain class used to have their wardrobes cleaved in half - so there was one part of their wardrobe meant to be worn in the city, and another to be worn in the country. This was meant for the first. 
A traditional Guards coat is made with peak lapels, a double breasted 6x3 button front, welted pockets, and a half belt at the back. You can see versions of it here on Prince Charles and King George VI.
Vox’s coat was made for him by Steed, a small bespoke tailoring house in England that specializes in the “London drape cut.” That essentially means a soft shoulder and slightly fuller chest and upper back. You can kind of see that effect here, although it’s subtle. The cloth is a heavy, heavy, 36oz dark blue cashmere from The London Lounge’s Cloth Club. That’s basically a heavy enough cashmere to keep you warm in Antarctica. 
(Photo via voxsart)

A Coat for the Meanest of Winters

Again, I’m not much of a reblogger, but it’s hard to not reblog a photo of such a wonderful garment. This is what’s known as a “Guards coat,” which is a style of overcoat that takes its name from what English Officers of the Guard used to wear. It’s a “city” coat, which means it’s slightly orientated towards business, rather than leisure. Back in the day, men of a certain class used to have their wardrobes cleaved in half - so there was one part of their wardrobe meant to be worn in the city, and another to be worn in the country. This was meant for the first. 

A traditional Guards coat is made with peak lapels, a double breasted 6x3 button front, welted pockets, and a half belt at the back. You can see versions of it here on Prince Charles and King George VI.

Vox’s coat was made for him by Steed, a small bespoke tailoring house in England that specializes in the “London drape cut.” That essentially means a soft shoulder and slightly fuller chest and upper back. You can kind of see that effect here, although it’s subtle. The cloth is a heavy, heavy, 36oz dark blue cashmere from The London Lounge’s Cloth Club. That’s basically a heavy enough cashmere to keep you warm in Antarctica. 

(Photo via voxsart)

A Grand Rehabilitation

I have an old polo coat that I love. It weighs ten tons, is warm as all heck, and I wear it about once a year, when I’m traveling somewhere cold in the winter. It cost me about $30 on eBay (though I think it took another $25 to get it to me), and it was originally made around 1930 for Capper & Capper, a competitor to Brooks Brothers.

Sadly, while the camelhair exterior was holding up strong, the rayon lining was starting to be a bit worse for the wear. As most 80-year-olds do. I thought initially of taking it to my tailor and having him reline it, which probably would have cost a hundred or a hundred fifty dollars, but would have made it good for another fifty or so years of service. That was the plan, for a while.

Then I remembered that I had a closet full of silk scraps - odds and ends from our pocket square fabric that weren’t quite big enough to constitute a full square. I thought of how much I love patched out blue jeans, and wondered if this might be an opportunity for a creative solution.

Above: the result. Rather than replacing the lining, we patched it with fabric leftover from Put This On pocket squares. We were careful to preserve the tags, too - those old tags are one of the best parts of a vintage garment. The result is a very serious and hard-working coat on the exterior, with a beautiful secret inside.

Q and Answer: What Size Overcoat Should I Wear?
William asks: If I wear a 38 regular blazer, what size overcoat should I be looking for? 
You should look for your suit and blazer size when buying an overcoat. Manufacturers size with the expectation that you’ll be wearing an overcoat that you’ll be wearing an overcoat over a suit jacket or sport coat. If you wear a size 38 jacket, you’ll want a size 38 overcoat.
If you don’t expect to wear the overcoat on top of another jacket, you may want to consider sizing down one size. And of course you’ll always want to try on or check measurements, as they vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. While the vast majority of brands size overcoats by coat size, it’s not universal.
Generally speaking, you’ll want the chest of the overcoat to measure 2” larger than your actual chest size for a snug fit, and 4” or so larger than your actual chest to fit over a suit jacket.

Q and Answer: What Size Overcoat Should I Wear?

William asks: If I wear a 38 regular blazer, what size overcoat should I be looking for?

You should look for your suit and blazer size when buying an overcoat. Manufacturers size with the expectation that you’ll be wearing an overcoat that you’ll be wearing an overcoat over a suit jacket or sport coat. If you wear a size 38 jacket, you’ll want a size 38 overcoat.

If you don’t expect to wear the overcoat on top of another jacket, you may want to consider sizing down one size. And of course you’ll always want to try on or check measurements, as they vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. While the vast majority of brands size overcoats by coat size, it’s not universal.

Generally speaking, you’ll want the chest of the overcoat to measure 2” larger than your actual chest size for a snug fit, and 4” or so larger than your actual chest to fit over a suit jacket.

I have to admit I’m jealous of Will from A Suitable Wardrobe’s new overcoat. It’s absolutely stunning.
I live in Los Angeles, with no need for an overcoat unless I’m traveling. I do have two coats - a Chesterfield I bought at Bobby From Boston while attending a winter, black-tie wedding and a gorgeous navy polo coat from Capper & Capper, a celebrated but long-departed Detroit clothier. They spend most of their time, though, in a zipped-up covered clothes rack in my shed, along with my evening clothes and some out-of-season suits and sportcoats.
Will has all his clothes made for him, and this beautiful jacket likely cost him a pretty penny. If you have the budget, I would never begrudge such a thing, but overcoats are the one item of clothing I’d most suggest buying second-hand.
They really hit all the sweet spots for thrift or eBay shopping. They’re prohibitively expensive new - a good overcoat usually has a four-digit price tag. A number of classic styles will always be fashionable - Will’s coat above, for example, could have been made in 1945, 1965 or 1995 as well as today. Most of all, they’re durable, so it’s entirely possible to find an older coat in good condition.
If you’re a regular thrifter, you’ve probably run across a coat you love already. If you’re not, take a look at eBay. As long as you’re careful of edge wear - ask about it, it’s tough to see in pictures - and moth holes, there’s plenty of good stuff available. Shipping will likely cost you $30 or $40, but there are plenty of deals to be had for as little as $30 or $40. My own coats, both of exceptional quality, and both in exceptional condition, each cost less than $100, all-in.

I have to admit I’m jealous of Will from A Suitable Wardrobe’s new overcoat. It’s absolutely stunning.

I live in Los Angeles, with no need for an overcoat unless I’m traveling. I do have two coats - a Chesterfield I bought at Bobby From Boston while attending a winter, black-tie wedding and a gorgeous navy polo coat from Capper & Capper, a celebrated but long-departed Detroit clothier. They spend most of their time, though, in a zipped-up covered clothes rack in my shed, along with my evening clothes and some out-of-season suits and sportcoats.

Will has all his clothes made for him, and this beautiful jacket likely cost him a pretty penny. If you have the budget, I would never begrudge such a thing, but overcoats are the one item of clothing I’d most suggest buying second-hand.

They really hit all the sweet spots for thrift or eBay shopping. They’re prohibitively expensive new - a good overcoat usually has a four-digit price tag. A number of classic styles will always be fashionable - Will’s coat above, for example, could have been made in 1945, 1965 or 1995 as well as today. Most of all, they’re durable, so it’s entirely possible to find an older coat in good condition.

If you’re a regular thrifter, you’ve probably run across a coat you love already. If you’re not, take a look at eBay. As long as you’re careful of edge wear - ask about it, it’s tough to see in pictures - and moth holes, there’s plenty of good stuff available. Shipping will likely cost you $30 or $40, but there are plenty of deals to be had for as little as $30 or $40. My own coats, both of exceptional quality, and both in exceptional condition, each cost less than $100, all-in.

The covert coat at Men’s Flair
It’s On eBay
Gieves & Hawkes Greatcoat
Speaking of RJMan, here’s a Gieves & Hawkes coat he found on the Bay, dated 1953. The seller only ships to the UK, but I bet if you emailed he might be amenable to international shipping. 
Buy It Now for

It’s On eBay

Gieves & Hawkes Greatcoat

Speaking of RJMan, here’s a Gieves & Hawkes coat he found on the Bay, dated 1953. The seller only ships to the UK, but I bet if you emailed he might be amenable to international shipping.

Buy It Now for

It’s On eBay
Hermes Overcoat (58 Euro)
This is serious. Vicuña overcoat, made from the extra-fine hair of the extra-rare vicuña. The ultimate luxury garment, right? Wrong. It’s not the ultimate luxury garment until you give said overcoat a full mink lining.
I don’t know whether to barf or cry. I may cry barf.
Buy It Now for $25,000

It’s On eBay

Hermes Overcoat (58 Euro)

This is serious. Vicuña overcoat, made from the extra-fine hair of the extra-rare vicuña. The ultimate luxury garment, right? Wrong. It’s not the ultimate luxury garment until you give said overcoat a full mink lining.

I don’t know whether to barf or cry. I may cry barf.

Buy It Now for $25,000

thisfits:

A bespoke Polo in London

It’s time for Michael Alden to do a Jake Davis Test Shot. Amirite?

Speaking of polo jackets, here’s a spectacular one from Michael Alden, the dean of the bespoke clothing forum The London Lounge.

It’s On eBay
Vintage Great Coat (40L)
Starts at 99p ($1.54), ends Tuesday

It’s On eBay

Vintage Great Coat (40L)

Starts at 99p ($1.54), ends Tuesday

I love this picture of Alan from the Heart of America, demonstrating some wonderful cold-weather style.
The coat’s a polo coat - double breasted, usually made of camel hair, with big patch pockets. Relatively tough to find these days, but you couldn’t find a more classic piece of outerwear. Ralph Lauren and Brooks Brothers often offer them, and you can certainly find them on eBay. I have one for winter travel - it’s by Capper & Capper of Chicago, which was owned by Abercrombie & Fitch. It weights a hundred thousand pounds and is warm and comfortable as heck.
Alan’s also wearing his hat quite well. As I’ve written here before, it’s much easier to wear a hat in weather that demands it without looking like a historical re-enactor.

I love this picture of Alan from the Heart of America, demonstrating some wonderful cold-weather style.

The coat’s a polo coat - double breasted, usually made of camel hair, with big patch pockets. Relatively tough to find these days, but you couldn’t find a more classic piece of outerwear. Ralph Lauren and Brooks Brothers often offer them, and you can certainly find them on eBay. I have one for winter travel - it’s by Capper & Capper of Chicago, which was owned by Abercrombie & Fitch. It weights a hundred thousand pounds and is warm and comfortable as heck.

Alan’s also wearing his hat quite well. As I’ve written here before, it’s much easier to wear a hat in weather that demands it without looking like a historical re-enactor.