In fashion terms, there is something uniquely potent about the power of an investment buy—an item of clothing that is able to hold its value and beauty and keep us coming back for more, season after season. In a world of micro-trends, next day delivery and more shopping options than one could ever need, the gentle plod of a timeless piece is not to be underestimated.
For the weather-beaten Brit, the coat has to be one of the items of clothing that carries the heaviest load in our wardrobes, as it needs to get us through at least six months of the year (if not more) and must be warm enough to keep out the chill while still looking the part. Perhaps more so than other bits in our wardrobe, a coat is also an item that is least likely to be swept up in the changing tides of seasonal trends, so it really is worth putting the time in to find the right one.
From trenches and biker jackets to blazers and camel coats, there so many options in the outwear world that have stood the test of time, particularly when they come courtesy of certain brands. A Burberry trench or an Acne shearling are pedigrees in their categories and the standard by which countless other brands follow. With winter in full swing, the Who What Wear editors put our heads together to come up with a definite list of the stylish outwear buys that are worth the investment. They might come with a hefty price tag, but they're sure to make their worth back in cost per wear. Scroll down to see our shortlist.
The Burberry Trench
Is there any coat more iconic than the Burberry trench? I think not. A seasoned favourite in the wardrobe of fashion lovers everywhere, it's one to pass down through the generations.
The ACNE Shearling
ACNE's shearling jackets are a rare breed of coat that manage to both look cool and also keep you toasty warm whatever the weather. Make like Rosie Huntington-Whiteley and style yours with skinny jeans and chunky boots.
A Max Mara coat is essentially the fantasy piece of all of Who What Wear's editors. Whether you go for the classic camel or the cuddly teddy, these iconic outwear buys are sure to stand the test of time.
The Joseph cashmere coat
For ageless and trend-transcending style, you can't do much better than Joseph. The brand's cashmere coats are the ultimate in polished, chic styling, and will look just as good over jeans as they will with a cocktail dress.
The Theory blazer
One of my best TK Maxx finds was a Theory blazer and it's a testament to its timelessness that I still wear it seven years later and it still looks like new. A double-breasted style is ideal for formal occasions, while a single-breasted beige option will look great dressed down.
Barbour has become a hugely respected British institution thanks to its heritage and handling of its famed wax jacket. Of course, when Alexa Chung joined forced with the brand we knew it would be a win for practically minded fashion lovers everywhere, and we were right.
The Moncler puffer
Long before Prada put its weight behind the puffer trend and spawned a thousand copy-cat styles, Moncler was there making down-filled coats that could weather any storm, ski slope and chilly British winter. The brand's Aloes belted jacket is the perfect balance of quilted volume and cinched shape.