A vintage wardrobe built on the classics has the advantage of never being in or out of style, but beyond it.
Even if I don’t necessarily follow fashion trends, I know what’s in style, and sometimes pull out pieces from my closet that are trending—velvet, animal prints, top handle bags. However, I’m also happy to just wear what I like because I don’t particularly want to look like everyone else, thank you very much.
With vintage, I’ve got the past—and sometimes the original—version of a trend, rather than the current reiteration. Dressing this way makes you appreciate just how cyclical fashion really is. Yet some styles endure: over the decades of his tenure at Chanel, Karl Lagerfeld has done a zillion variations of Coco’s tweed suit and it still looks fresh and chic season after season. It’s a design that is truly iconic and timeless.
So it is with some amusement that a recent thrift store find has landed me smack in the middle of a sartorial trend: the puffer coat. According to whowhatwear, it is all the rage right now, especially in New York.
I spotted this ESPRIT down and feather jacket on the mannequin and immediately tried it on. It looked great but I wasn’t sure it was for me. I have a coat collection/obsession that at current count, distributed over three closets, is, ahem, 40. Until now, there was not a single puffer coat in my wardrobe. So it would certainly be an outlier among my outerwear: it’s utterly modern, on-trend, and it’s a bright, icy white.
In a size 4, it is quite a fitted jacket. Plus, a few cleverly angled seams avoid the Michelin Man look. I liked the clean lines and the stylish snaps. It’s perfect for the present bleak mid-winter, but will also transition easily into Spring since it’s short and both the hood and the trim around it is removable. Needless to say, after a bit of hesitation, I decided to buy it.
I’m not sure why this puffer was rejected and donated, but I’m certainly glad it was. I wore it yesterday with jeans and my Stuart Weisman 5050 boots. Even though it’s a more casual vibe than I usually sport, it’s fun. And that’s the great advantage of thrifting—you can try out something different without spending a lot.
Now, if only I was going to New York.
If you want to give the puffer coat trend a whirl, here are some great styles: