Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

WARFARE TRENCH; Not Sure If You Need to Wrap Up or Stay Lightly Dressed? Trench Coats Cover All Bases, Whether You're Tall and Leggy or a Touch on the Short Side

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

WARFARE TRENCH; Not Sure If You Need to Wrap Up or Stay Lightly Dressed? Trench Coats Cover All Bases, Whether You're Tall and Leggy or a Touch on the Short Side

Article excerpt

Byline: Laura Craik

HOT, cold, hot, cold, hot: no, not the boy you snogged in the Red Lion last month but the weather. Here on the Standard fashion desk, we've lost count of the number of times we've left the house in our winter coats only to find ourselves melting by the time we've reached the Tube station. And that's before we've even got into the train. Life is tough, innit? However, the solution to these thermostatically random, showerspeckled days is simple: a trench coat. This classic garment goes in and out of fashion but while it isn't always "in", it's never, ever "out". Because of this, it is a genuine investment buy. You will never regret buying a trench coat.

The trench coat is most definitely "in" this autumn. At the Paris shows last month (Paris was also suffering from a broken thermostat, and frequently felt like Ibiza in June), trench coats were out in force among the fash pack, usually serving as an accompaniment to this season's pencil skirts. But while a trench coat looks marvellously sharp with a pencil skirt, 15 denier tights and simple black stilettos (very "job interview"), one of its best features is its versatility. It works just as well for work as for a Saturday afternoon walk, worn open so that it billows, with midblue jeans and white sneakers. The trench was not invented: rather, it evolved over the years as a utilitarian garment whose every feature -- weatherproof fabric, gun flap, epaulettes -- can be linked with a function: little surprise, then, that it is so versatile.

Length is a hotly contested issue. Burberry's new "mini trench", which falls to mid-thigh, is perfect for miniskirts, of course, but you have to have the legs to carry it off, and it can look a little as though you forgot to put your bottom half on. Conversely, a coat that runs to mid-calf can look wonderful on taller women but a little frumpy on smaller ones, especially when worn without trousers being visible underneath. …

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