Winter is coming, and I can’t wait. Not just because I am a Stark of Winterfell at heart, but because I adore winter clothes. Coats, in particular. A fabulous coat is like a fabulous dress, an outfit in and of itself.
No one likes to be cold (especially me), so a good winter coat needs to marry form with function. It needs to be made from high-quality materials that will last for countless wearings. And, if it is going to be worn by an Eco-Chick, it needs to be mindfully made.
The Fitzroy coat from Gehrich (pictured at top) is part of the Melbourne collection. The Gehrich designs are all from the mind of co-founder and creative director, Samantha Gehrich. The Fitzroy is a virgin wool and angora blend. I am not usually a fan of a Peter Pan collar, but this one is perfectly adult, not at all twee. The oatmeal color and the wide sleeves are achingly classy.
Another Gehrich favorite: The Brunswick. The Gehrich online store has just opened to US buyers, and I anticipate a rush of stateside Eco-Chicks to start snapping these up. Collection sizes and production are limited, in order to stay sustainable. The line is manufactured entirely in Australia, to support local industries. The Brunswick is a Merino Wool Cashmere blend. I adore the earthy color, the silhouette, and the oversize buttons at the cuffs.
Nomad is an ethically designed brand, manufactured in Portugal. As the name suggests, Nomad is all about travel-pieces. I can easily imagine wrapping myself in this coat while exploring a new place. The Suni Coat seems to convey a sense of mystery, while still retaining the feeling of home and comfort.
Cropped jackets are a lovely way to keep your core warm while allowing freedom-of-movement down below (and allowing you to show off your skirt or trousers). This one-off designer piece is made from thick, warm Pendleton wool as reimagined by Caitlin Mociun of the eponymous line.
The Textured Swing Coat from NatureVSFuture is, according to their website, “made out of wool and wool-blends from designer, top quality, surplus fabrics.” Sustainable luxury at its finest. NVF is made entirely in the New York City garment district, and is the brain-child of another female designer, Nina Valenti (“Who run the world? Girls.”). The coat’s classic shape pairs beautifully with the fabric’s unique pattern. It reminds me of spider-webs and electricity.
In the world of sustainable fashion, Stella McCartney needs no introduction. But, just for fun: She is a lifelong vegetarian, the daughter of Paul and Linda McCartney, and fashion wunderkind (she was the Creative Director at Chloe at the age of twenty-six, which begs the question: what am I doing with my life?). Her lines are devoid of all leather and fur. The Giles Coat is black wool melton, with a lapel so wide you could park a hybrid car on it. Though why would you do such a thing? Just wear it, and be fabulous.
Not new this season, but rather back by popular demand is The Audrey Coat, from Vaute Couture. Pronounced like “haute,” but with a “v” (for vegan), Vaute Coats are made from weatherproof performance fabrics. The company was founded by Leanne Mai-Ly Hilgart, a former model and MBA student. The fibers are recyclable and recycled, and the clothes are made in the NYC Garment District. This robin’s egg blue coat is exquisite down to the last subtle detail, like the little stars for the buttons. I’d get married in the wintertime just to wear this coat instead of a wedding dress.
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