Puffer Picks

Last December, we were walking around Philly on a cold night during our annual overnight stay for my birthday, and I realized something…it’s time to invest in a good, insulated winter coat. I’d been making do with various pea coats, duffels, and other “dressier” wool coats, but they just weren’t cutting it – while wool coats can be very warm, they just don’t offer the protection an insulated coat would. I put it off until this year, but I finally dove in and made a purchase. Here are the top options I was considering:

The Cool Girl Pick

Uniqlo Seamless Down Long Coat – $149.90

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I came THIS CLOSE to buying this guy, and to be honest I’m not 100% sure why I decided against it…it’s stylish, gets great reviews, and the seamless design prevents cold air from seeping in. I did kind of want fur lining on the hood for no particular reason, so I guess that’s what edged this coat out.

The Sensible Pick

LL Bean Ultrawarm Coat, Long – $269

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I actually don’t remember coming across this coat while I was searching, which is really strange, because I searched LL Bean pretty exhaustively. This may have won out if I had seen it, although I didn’t really want to spend over $200…although I probably should have shelled out the extra cash for a warmer coat that’ll last me years (this is an ongoing struggle with me – I’m a crazy bargain hunter, to a fault.)

The Bargain Pick

Larry Levine Down & Feather Fill Jacket with Faux Fur Trim – $89 (on sale)

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This bargain-loving gal came very, very close to purchasing this coat – it’s super cute, right? What ended up stopping me was the lack of elastic in the wrists (I could see my arms freezing because of this) and the lack of reviews…plus, the price is so low it was almost suspect (to be fair, it was originally $198).

The Too Good To Be True Pick

Columbia Voodoo Puffer Coat – $180

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This seemed like a great price for an outdoor brand like Columbia, but upon reading reviews it sounds like it’s more of a fall coat and isn’t built for freezing weather (despite looking pretty darn warm). Next!

The Luxury Pick

Canada Goose Chelsea Fur-Trimmed Down Jacket – $755

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While this was never actually a consideration, this is most definitely the coat I’d choose if I had an unlimited budget – but alas, this is not currently the case. Maybe someday.

My Pick

Michael Kors Faux Fur Trim Down Puffer – $165 (on sale)8867784_fpx

And the winner is…this Michael Kors coat. Time will tell whether or not I regret buying a winter coat from a fashion brand, rather than an outdoor brand (my bet is YES, yes I will). Okay, you guys – so here is my (probably faulty) reasoning. First of all, it’s cute as hell. It’s nice and fitted so I won’t look like the Michelin Man, it’s just the right balance between matte and shiny, and I had told myself in the first place that I’d prefer gold hardware (which I didn’t end up actually caring about, but still). It got good reviews, the wrists are elasticized, there are plenty of pockets (I like that cute arm pocket, not that I’ll ever use it), and it’s the right length. AND…you guys, it was on crazy sale. Why am I like this? But seriously, it was marked down to $194.99 from what the website claims was originally $330 (although I’m skeptical of this, and I can’t seem to find this exact coat anywhere other than Macy’s…maybe it’s from last season? Which I’m fine with), PLUS I got an extra 25% off for signing up for text alerts so I only ended up paying a little over $150, PLUS I earned extra Macy’s cash that I can use towards my insanely expensive foundation, so that’s a win. But, I mean…it’s Michael Kors. What the hell does Michael Kors know about winter coats?

Welp…my decision has been made, and I’m anxiously awaiting its arrival (it is seriously FREAKING COLD here all of a sudden). Time will tell if I end up giving in and shelling out $250+ for a legit puffer from LL Bean or Patagonia or something next year…I’m hoping not, though! Wish me luck!

Uniqlo Finds

During my “I-need-a-knee-length-down-filled-puffer-coat-but-I’m-cheap-and-want-to-spend-as-little-as-humanly-possible” search, I was suddenly hit by a stroke of genius (okay, that might be a slight exaggeration): UNIQLO! Uniqlo is one of those stores that I constantly forget exists, but as soon as I remember them, I immediately want to purchase everything they’re offering. They’re SO affordable, and their basics are on POINT. Unfortunately, the puffer coat I wanted is out of stock, but I did find a bunch of other stuff I’d love to snatch up:

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Ultra-Light Down Vest – $39.90 (on sale!)

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Melange Wool Coat – $39.90 (Love me a coatigan!)

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Cotton Cashmere Cable Crewneck Sweater – $19.90

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Extra Fine Merino Turtleneck Sweater – $29.90

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Heattech Stretch Ankle-Length Pants – $19.90

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High-Waist Chiffon Pleated Skirt – $29.90

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Heattech Scarf – $14.90

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Cashmere Crew Neck Sweater – $79.90 (Crazy price for cashmere!)

Outerwear Wishlist

I’ve arrived at the age where I’ve discovered you can’t really get through an East Coast winter with just one or two coats…you really do need a few different staples, depending on occasion. I have a couple of solid options: A lined wool toggle coat for when it’s cold but I need something a little dressier than a huge puffer coat; a quilted navy jacket for more transitional weather, a vegan leather jacket that’s more for style than any practical purpose, and a hooded mustard number for when I feel like sporting something a little brighter.

That said, my collection is missing a few essentials: a truly dressy coat to go over formalwear, a SUPER warm insulated coat to brave freezing, windy days, a raincoat to actually keep me dry in wet weather, and a trench for a more professional vibe on cool fall/spring days. Here are some options I’ve been eyeing up to round out my collection:

outerwear wishlist

  1. Religion Craft Coat (via Asos) $127 (on sale) – I dig the extra large collar, and I like that this coat can be dressed up or down.
  2. Patagonia Downtown Parka $189 (on MAJOR sale!) – This is just what I need for windy, icy days – nice and long, and insulated with goose down, this bad boy’s bound to keep me toasty.
  3. Stutterheim Stockholm Raincoat $295 – This is my dream raincoat…the price is a bit steep for a coat I probably wouldn’t wear that often, but boy is this guy pretty.
  4. PrettyLittleThing Belted Trench (Via Asos) $95 – Although I’m usually very into menswear-inspired clothing, I like that this soft pink trench is a little different than the typical camel number…still professional, but with a feminine twist.

 

Fresh Fall Fashion (cute, no?)

I thought I’d share a few of the things I’ve snagged to spruce up my wardrobe for fall…

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  1. J. Crew Factory V-Neck Pullover – Oversized and comfy as can be, I’ll be lounging with a cup of hot tea or romping around in a pile of leaves in this (probably not that last one).
  2. Merona Kona Backless Loafer Mules – These are my new favorite fall shoes – perfect with jeans, and they don’t make my outfit look too casual…plus, who doesn’t love a good mule? #lazy
  3. J. Crew Factory Perfect Fit Plaid Classic Button-Down – To add to my ever-growing collection of plaid shirts…I plan to buy a white puffer vest to pair with this bad boy.
  4. J. Crew Factory V-Neck Cardigan – I’ve been needing a new boyfriend cardigan, and this olive color is perfect for this time of year. Crazy soft!
  5. J. Crew Factory Short-Sleeve Sweater – This is perfect for this transitional weather, and the yellow color is the perfect pop of sunshine.
  6. Lucille Laser-Cut Booties (Target) – I was in desperate need for new ankle boots, and I’m loving the perforated look.