This post was created in collaboration with Jack Wills.
THE CLASSIC TRENCH COAT
The first coat I ever bought for myself was a trench coat. Though my all-girls school was pretty strict with the uniform regulations, we were allowed to wear our own coats over our skirts and jumpers as long as they satisfied three conditions. They had to be smart, they had to be above the knee, and no bright colours were allowed. Though my style was questionable back then, I think I made a pretty excellent choice in opting for the classic double breasted trench coat with a belted waist, a button front and neat lapels. In its timeless stone colour, it worked perfectly with my navy uniform, but it also complemented my everyday wardrobe effortlessly, and it is for this reason that the trench coat trend persists over a century later. Unsurprisingly, I no longer own the trench coat of my school days, but I have since acquired a number of trench coats in various colours and lengths. Whether I’m throwing it over a T-shirt and jeans or dressing up a cosy jumper dress, the trench coat is a staple from autumn through spring, but what about the warmer summer months? Well, it turns out that the trench is the perfect item for wearing over those lightweight summer layers. So how do I like to style it?
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ROLL THE SLEEVES UP
The trusty trench coat is usually associated with wetter, windier weather thanks to its widespread use during WWI, and though I hope you won’t be in need of weatherproofing during the summer months, we all know that it can get a little bit nippy here in the UK. A trench coat is the perfect cover up for those cooler moments, whether you’re opting for casual day wear or glitzy evening wear. However, if you’re anything like me, you’ll be getting a little bit hot under the collar in no time. Sound familiar? Well, fear not, because you have a nifty little trick at your disposal. Much like the oh so casual half tuck, a well crafted sleeve roll is key to nailing that effortless ‘I just threw this on’ look. Not only does it look great, but it’s a great way to mitigate the summer sweats. Win win!
FLASH SOME LEG
Though you may think a trench coat seems better paired with jeans and boots, styling it over bare legs gives the traditionally male overcoat a feminine charm. It looks equally wonderful over a floaty, floral tea dress as it does over a pair of summer shorts, but don’t stop there. Get those Alexa Chung vibes by styling your trench coat with an A-line skirt and a plain white tee, or belt things up over a smart white shirt dress for a more corporate look. The options really are endless with a piece as versatile as the trench coat.
DRESS IT DOWN
Though you can dress a trench coat down at any time of year, I think that messy undone style works particularly well with a summer wardrobe. Scuffed sneakers, an untucked jumper and trench coat hanging loosely around my body – it’s my nana’s worst nightmare, but I think it looks perfectly imperfect. In general, things tend to be a little less tidy during the summer months. Fly away hairs, smudged mascara, sneaky sweat patches etc. are all things we obsess over from time to time, but believe it or not, it’s possible to prioritise comfort and look great! Embrace the imperfect!
SHOP THE TRENCH COAT
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Head over to the Jack Wills website for more tips on how to style a trench coat, and browse their classic range of trench coats while you’re there! I’d love to know – how do you style a trench coat for summer?