Last week, Hurricane Sandy ushered in our first bout of cold weather. It hit hard. We were reduced to huddling in small groups in the corner of Haley just to stave off the frostbite. We transitioned from bare arms to wool sweaters overnight. Or, to translate that into terms that are a little more familiar, we transitioned from Nike shorts to Nike shorts with leggings underneath.
You might spend hours determining the perfect ensemble, but once the cold weather strikes, the only thing people will be able to judge you by will be your outerwear. So what does your winter coat say about you?
Colored pea coat
Cold weather often means clouds, lack of sunlight and stowing away your vibrant hues in favor of dark, muted colors. A brightly colored pea coat is a way to throw on a splash of color in a sea of grays. But bear in mind, not all colors are equal. If you’re wearing a pea coat in a stunning scarlet or deep red this winter, you’re likely to come off as mysterious, alluring and adventurous. If you’re wearing a pea coat in pink, you’re likely to get mistaken for a 14-year-old girl.
The leather jacket is a great option for turning your reputation around if you made the pink pea coat mistake earlier in the season. Throw on a leather jacket, and all of a sudden you’re kicking your feet up in class, popping your gum and rolling your eyes excessively. Wearing a leather jacket instantly communicates that you are a rebel without a cause who does reckless things like riding a motorcycle or tossing your plastic bottles into the bins marked ‘landfill’ without blinking an eye.
Oversized military jacket
When properly styled, this look can add an effortless ease to your style that lands you somewhere squarely between glamorous and girl-next-door. The look can most accurately be labeled ‘homeless chic.’ With its army-surplus appeal and vintage wash, the oversized military jacket runs the risk of making you look like you are ready to hunker down next to a trash can fire.
The trench coat borders on costume, not because it is particularly garish, but because it transcends its use as a jacket and embodies a persona. A girl in a trench coat is not simply looking for a way to withstand the wind. You are channeling your inner British superstar (we all have one, from Kate Middleton to Emma Watson) and probably narrating the entire event in your head using a English accent. The trench carries connotations of intrigue as much as it does elegance. With the collar pulled high and your hat tipped low, you look like a girl that’s either ready to solve a crime or commit one.
Long sleeved T-shirt and vest
This combination throws onlookers for a loop, namely because they simply don’t know what to make of it. Here’s a girl who took a look at the weather report and thought, ‘I’m going to need to find a way to stay warm. I should probably concentrate all efforts exclusively on my torso.” This outerwear choice communicates an element of danger. This is a girl who is undaunted by the brisk temperature, passersby will think. This is a girl who is not afraid to lose both arms to frostbite.
The shape of this jacket recalls the regal austerity of a cape and the fit of a plastic garbage bag. A girl in a swing coat wears it with her head held high, trying to avoid eye contact with the laboring class, and she probably still owns the tiara she wore to her high school prom. Because your body will be largely indistinguishable underneath the swish of fabric, wearing a swing coat tells people that you are devoted to the sartorial cause and you’re probably too busy for a boyfriend right now anyway.