The magazines would have you believe that a trench coat is just one of those wardrobe classics that everyone acquires. Often, they make you feel like some sort of loser if you don’t own one; as though a trench coat is some essential component of being a Fully Functional Human Woman, like red lipstick. Well I’m sorry, but – like red lipstick – trench coats are one of the hardest garments to get right. This is possibly because of their ubiquity: you have to kiss a lot of frogs before you find your suave, belted prince. I totally blame the belt. Trench coat belts are just b*stards. I don’t like to be confronted with a decision every time I put on my coat. Belted up but knotted like a dressing gown? Or just belted? Nah – maybe open. But that’s a bit flappy. And everyone will see the stain on my jumper. Damn it, I’ll just wear my black coat again.
Persevere. Try belting the belt at the back, like wot the fashion editors do. For if you do persevere, you will find the trench coat to be a truly indispensable item. It works with jeans. It works with midis. It works with wide-leg trousers. It works with pencil skirts. It’s waterproof. We live in Britain. Enough said.
Did you know you could buy an actual Burberry trench coat for under £1000? This showerproof one is Burbs’ entry-level garment, with a detachable hood
Burberry, Detachable Hood Taffeta Trench Coat, £595
Hobbs’ “Saskia” trench comes in black, navy and cream, and also in a really quite insane lime
Hobbs, Saskia Trench, £199