Now that spring is upon us, it’s time to invest in a trench coat. The style has evolved through the past century and a half, but the combination of practicality and good looks means it never goes out of style.
The big names are Burberry and Aquascutum, both of whom offered trench coats designed for officers in WW1 and still produce classic trench coats today. Look for wide lapels, a belted double breasted cut fastened with buttons, and raglan sleeves. Some forms of the coat, such as the Australian Driza-Bone brand, have kept the original shoulder cape, but in many modern versions, this has been reduced to a storm flap.
The trench became chic in the 1960s, favoured by Jane Birkin and took a starring role when worn by Catherine Deneuve in the Umbrellas of Cherbourg and the iconic Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s.
It’s an extremely versatile garment, working equally well with jeans and a t-shirt or over a dress or business suit. Look for a water-resistant fabric in beige or stone if you want to keep it classic. More expensive versions come with cosy detachable linings which make it a three season garment, taking you through from spring to the start of winter.
Stick with a classic Burberry trench and you could still be wearing it in twenty years’ time yet still look on trend. Alternatively, you can make more of style statement this season by opting for a pastel version, going luxe with a leather trench or even stepping into spring in a floral version.