Julie Rath: Get a Killer Coat

Men's Style Tips: OuterwearDid you put together a great outfit today? That’s all well and good, but I gotta tell you: if your outerwear is bad news, it doesn’t matter what you have on under it. Your look is shot.

Your coat or jacket sets the tone for your look, so read on for how to bring it up to speed.

A lot of times my one-on-one clients know they need outerwear but don’t know where to start. There are a multitude of different types of these jackets, and it can be really confusing, especially if you’re shopping online (do you know what a “utility jacket” is???) To simplify your options, I’ve broken them down by length and given you samples for each. Click the links to see the samples.

Here’s what you have to choose from for Fall and Winter outerwear:

Waist length
Includes: bombervestleather and suede (usually this length, but they can also go to upper-thigh), denim (good for layering)

Upper-thigh length (length hits about where your hip creases when you lift your knee up)
Includes: parkafield jacketutility jacket (has four pockets on the front), shirt jacketpeacoatsporty shell-type jacket

Mid-thigh length
Includes: raincoatovercoat (here’s my rundown on how to shop for an overcoat)

Knee length
Includes: overcoatdressy/traditional raincoat

Of these options, it would be great if you owned one from each length category, but if you can’t swing that, try for one from each of two categories, preferably one with a dressy feel and one with a sporty feel. That helps add versatility so you aren’t wearing the same thing day in and day out.

And make sure the jacket or coat fits you properly. The seams should hit right on the edges of your shoulders, the sleeves shouldn’t go past your wrists, and it should fit trimly through the torso, but you should be able to button/snap it.

 

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