When you live in NY, or any other cold climate city, the coat is the shining star of your winter wardrobe and I could not be more EXCITED!
Admittedly, I have become a coat hoarder and have acquired quite the collection in many colors, styles and patterns. Nonetheless, I tend to be drawn to the simplicity of black, yet love exaggerated detail like voluminous sleeves, textured fabrics or atypical silhouettes.
Last week, I rocked four of my favorites for four specific occasions. Because each coat made such a powerful statement, I styled each outfit based around the coat. As a result, the complete look gave me a personality to match the aesthetic of each black frock. Proving true what I love most about fashion; when used properly, it can evoke persona altering powers!
First up, this double-breasted peacoat has to be my all-time favorite. Purchased in 2006, this coat has literally had my back through many 12 winters, 3 states, a handful of lovers and 1 horrifying fire. About 4 years ago I freshened up the look by switching out its 20 black patent leather buttons for ones with a gold embossed seashell. Switching out the buttons turned into a $43 investment, but it was worth every cent and completely change the look, feel, and vibe of this coat. Paired with my favorite camo pants, I was ready to hit the streets and take on a day full of shopping.
Next, this 1980’s buttonless swing coat has quickly become my newest crush for the season. With my frame, I am not 100% sure if I’ll keep the over-sized shoulder pads in, but I wouldn’t change anything else. I thrifted it from my favorite Harlem spot for only $25 and have lived in it ever since I bought it home from the cleaners. (Renee Style Announcement RSA: ALWAYS launder thrifted pieces! You don’t want any new thrift store “visitors” to occupy space in your home rent free!!!) On a Sunday morning coffee run, this coat easily transformed a fitted t-shirt and high-waisted jeans look into a romantic fall statement.
Another recent thrift find, is this single-breasted peacoat with a leather waist inlay. Traditionally, the peacoat has more of a military tone and can come off a little manly. Since I am a fan of mixing feminine and masculine apparel, I openly welcomed this piece to my collection of dresses. On this day, I paired it with one of my most “girly” dresses; a candy-striper inspired piece with Black lady divers embossed all over. Layered with a long duster and infinity scarf, the overall look was cozy, cutesy, with just enough structure.
Last, but not least, I am in love with this collarless velvet creation. This coat effortlessly reads polished and sophisticated which is why I loved pairing it with my grandmother’s brooch, a curve hugging pencil skirt and dared to expose a little tummy! No matter how this coat is styled, it can elevate any look and is SO warm that I felt comfortable in a more revealing outfit. Until, I unbuttoned it, one would think I was the most modest of modest dressers (BTW…check out this Netflick’s doc on modest dressing, “Follow This: Cover-Up Couture” Initially, it was for religions practices, but now has become a trend against the over-sexualized imagery of today's pop-culture & mass media.)
No matter the style, shape or color, it is worth putting forth the extra effort to find one (or a few) that perfectly meshes with your style. So bundle up baby, it's cold outside!