Winter Coat Trends & Fashion Cycles

/ / Design Stories

It’s well known that fashion comes in cycles – many old styles, colours and combinations are re-imagined and re-incarnated for new collections and looks; somewhat exemplified by the recent rise of the beard (last truly ‘fashionable’ for the returning heroes of the Crimean War in Victorian times, before the invention of the disposable razor turned this trend quite literally on it’s head).

Fashions tend to go through five separate stages from inception through to rejection, taking in an early adoptive curve, peak phase, and decline in popularity along the way. These stages can be lengthened or shortened depending on a variety of external factors such as general popularity and time-specificity, creating either classic designs or fashion ‘fads’ respectively.

Many of these aptly named classics can be found within our Heritage Books; fabrics we have been producing for both Mens and Ladieswear for over 175 years, with full design archives dating back to the turn of the 20th century.

With all this in mind, we thought we’d tell you a little more about a couple of our 2014 winter trend favourites which have endured the test of time in the Overcoat and the Duffle Coat.


The Overcoat

In many countries, coats and gowns reaching below the knee have been worn for centuries, often for formal uses as a means of establishing either social status or as part of a professional or military uniform.

The style of the Overcoat has varied greatly depending on the era, with many subtle design changes helping the overcoat remain one of the most popular pieces of outerwear since as far back as the 17th century. Whether double or single breasted, loose or tailor fitted, bold or muted colours, these variations have all had their times at the top.

A good winter coat is something that you more or less live in, and there’s no better way to pull any outfit together than with an Overcoat. They have become known as ‘the statement coat’, perfectly balanced between smart and casual and giving great versatility for a variety of personal looks. Below we have a John Lewis Military Overcoat and J Crew’s playful Glen Plaid (both in Abraham Moon fabrics) alongside the Chesterfield Overcoats of yesteryear.


Heritage Book - The OvercoatMilitary Overcoat by John Lewis J Crew Overcoat in Glen Plaid



The Duffle Coat

Made from a specific thick woollen material originating from the town of Duffel in Belgium, the Duffle coat is a traditional British garment made popular by the British Royal Navy, who issued a camel coloured variant of it for warm clothing during World War One.

The wooden toggle fastenings were made to be easily fastened and unfastened while wearing gloves in cold weather at sea, and the over-sized hood offered enough room to wear over a naval cap. The surplus stocks of these coats were eventually made available at reasonable prices to the general public.

Now back into the eyes of a nation thanks to one Paddington Bear, the Duffle is an indie classic much loved by many. We provided the fabric for renowned Duffle designers Gloverall to create a special jacket for the NSPCC Paddington Statue Walk, which will be auctioned for charity alongside the Sherlock Bear statue. Below you can see other Duffle coats from the Gloverall range, ideal if you miss out on the one of a kind Sherlock edition.


Heritage Book - Duffle Coat Gloverall Ladies Duffle Coat Gloverall Ladies Duffle Coat in Sky Blue