The Grown Man Parka
January 30th, 2013
Speaking of not f-cking around coats, it’s hard to beat a down-filled parka.
The problem with parkas, though, is that everyone seems to buy one of two brands. It’s as if the marketing teams behind The North Face and Canada Goose have effectively convinced the world that unless it’s sporty, black or grey, and full of brand logos, it won’t be “tough enough to endure the extreme conditions of your adventurist lifestyle”.
Don’t get me wrong, these brands make very warm, very functional jackets. They’re perfect for a weekend on the ski slopes or an afternoon game of pond hockey (eh?). For your day-t0-day commute, however, these extreme-sport products are not the most flattering, mature or versatile options.
Indeed, there are plenty of parkas on the market that might fit more seamlessly into your daily wardrobe.
Here’s an example, with three ways to wear it.
1. Corporate Winter
With a parka this classy, of course it works over a suit.
What I love about this coat in particular:
– Slim through the body and sleeves. Doesn’t have that “Michelin Man” silhouette.
– No logos/symbols.
– Neutral off-white/taupe color goes with everything (blues, browns, greys, blacks…you name it).
– Ultra lightweight down. This jacket is surpringsly light. Has that feeling over “floating” over the body.
– Removable hood, for those milder winter days.
– Zipper and/or button closure.
– Real coyote fur trim (feels nothing like that fake sh-t)
The subtle pattern-mixing in this look is even more subdued by the strength of the parka.
2. Business Casual
A coat like this is a good investment because it can be worn for literally anything.
From a casual hangout with the guys, to a corporate luncheon, to a weekend with the misses on the ski slopes.
A double-breasted jacket might be too dressy for “business casual”, but a double-breasted sweater is perfect.
Also, I gotta say, I’ve been hooked on pleated pants lately. They’re soo much more comfortable than flat front, it’s true. This pair, from my FIT design collection, has a box pleat (a forward pleat followed by a reverse pleat). The additional fabric provides less restriction than my slim plain-front trousers and makes it easier to store things in my pockets (especially when seated for long periods of time).
The pleats also look very regal and elegant, in my opinion.
In a properly curated seasonal wardrobe, solid fabrics don’t have to be boring.
Texture-mixing is pattern-mixing’s mature older brother.
- Neutral down parka by Moorer
- Double breasted knit jacket by Armani Collezioni
- Navy/Brown mini plaid shirt
- Brown hopsack tie
- Watch by Montblanc Timewalker Automatic
- Grey box pleated flannel trousers by Dan Trepanier
- Leather/suede double monkstrap shoes by Scarpe di Bianco
3. Weekend Chill
Of course, a down parka is a go-to coat for casual occasions as well.
Beefy down coat over thin down vest? Why not? I actually like the contrast of their scales.
On another note, I’ve always had a thing for exotic-skin belts, but they always seem to be inherently dressy. This American Bison number by Trafalgar has all the texture of an exotic, but it’s a little wider and has an awesome rectangular D-ring buckle. Perfect for a casual look that is more sharp than sloppy.
Spoiler alert: these Allen Edmonds boots will be one of the five items in our February Giveaway, kicking off this Friday.
Stay tuned, and bring the heat!
Thanks, as always, for reading.
Yours in style,
Photography by Alex Crawford.