drpeter

Super Member
They do list a classic polo coat. It looks full length to me, but it would be a simple matter to give them a call. They are very helpful and provide accurate information. I bought a pair of blue-grey flannels from them last week, and was extremely satisfied and happy with the transaction, from first telephone call to the receipt of the trousers.
 
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Guest-145521

Guest
I purchased one about eight years ago. It is quite long and roomy. I normally wear a 39R, and would have been better off with a 38S. It is a beautiful coat, but another caution- it is very heavy. I believe that it must have been made some years ago, and my more contemporary topcoat is much lighter and hence more comfortable.
 

Tweedlover

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
I purchased one about eight years ago. It is quite long and roomy. I normally wear a 39R, and would have been better off with a 38S. It is a beautiful coat, but another caution- it is very heavy. I believe that it must have been made some years ago, and my more contemporary topcoat is much lighter and hence more comfortable.
My topcoats have all been thrifted. So, being vintage-y, they tend to be somewhat heavy. But, when the weather is pretty cold, nothing beats a topcoat long enough to hit the calves which is of a heavier weight.
 

Fading Fast

Connoisseur
Over the years, I've acquired three weights in overcoats. The bullet-proof super-heavy one as described above which is needed for those twenty-degree-and-below days (especially if you ever commuted and stood on an elevated train platform at 5am in the dark of winter). Then there's the mid-weight one perfect for the high twenties to high thirties. Finally, I stumbled into a sale on a lightweight one that's perfect for the forties.

To be sure, no one starts out buying three weights in overcoats, but over time, if you can acquire them, they'll serve you well. That said, going forward, who knows as ninety-five-plus percent of the people I see today wear puffer coats or jackets, a bunch of layers of hoodies and jackets or some other such very casual cold-weather wear, so the overcoat seems to be going the way of the suit.
 
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Tweedlover

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
Over the years, I've acquired three weights in overcoats. The bullet-proof super-heavy one as described above which is needed for those twenty-degree-and-below days (especially if you ever commuted and stood on an elevated train platform at 5am in the dark of winter). Then there's the mid-weight one perfect for the high twenties to high thirties. Finally, I stumbled into a sale on a lightweight one that's perfect for the forties.

To be sure, no-one starts out buying three weights in overcoats, but over time, if you can acquire them, they'll serve you well. That said, going forward, who knows as ninety-five-plus percent of the people I see today wear puffer coats or jackets, a bunch of layers of hoodies and jackets or some other such very casual cold-weather wear, so the overcoat seems to be going the way of the suit.
So true. I'm the only guy I see around here wearing a topcoat, which I prefer wearing when cold, (40 degrees and lower), typically, though I also do have a parka. From 40-55 degrees I wear my peacoat, car coat or an old leather bomber.
 

A.L.Z.

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
I purchased one about eight years ago. It is quite long and roomy. I normally wear a 39R, and would have been better off with a 38S. It is a beautiful coat, but another caution- it is very heavy. I believe that it must have been made some years ago, and my more contemporary topcoat is much lighter and hence more comfortable.
Hi,
Thanks for your reply.

So you purchased in 2013 or 2014? Would you remember if the label said "Empire Clothing" and "Made in Canada"? There would also have been a very prominet UNITE! label in the inside breast pocket.

Would you know the length of the 39R coat? May I ask your height....for your height, what length did it fall -- knee or lower?
 
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delicious_scent

Super Member
Over the years, I've acquired three weights in overcoats. The bullet-proof super-heavy one as described above which is needed for those twenty-degree-and-below days (especially if you ever commuted and stood on an elevated train platform at 5am in the dark of winter). Then there's the mid-weight one perfect for the high twenties to high thirties. Finally, I stumbled into a sale on a lightweight one that's perfect for the forties.

To be sure, no one starts out buying three weights in overcoats, but over time, if you can acquire them, they'll serve you well. That said, going forward, who knows as ninety-five-plus percent of the people I see today wear puffer coats or jackets, a bunch of layers of hoodies and jackets or some other such very casual cold-weather wear, so the overcoat seems to be going the way of the suit.
I hope overcoats/topcoats don't fade away.

Wishful thinking, but they're more versatile than a suit and will be more popular. They often have all the benefits and dramatic silhouettes of tailoring, but without as many connotations.

I've seen people wear them as part of streetwear casual ensembles.



That was a very popular look by Kanye some years back. I think this type of outfit looks more natural and coherent than the awkward suit+sneakers look.

Obviously not trad, but I think it's a good thing if streetwear can help pieces of tailoring survive and even thrive.

The balmacaan coat and raglan coats might have seen a resurgence due to this. They naturally just seem to work with basically everything, including casual wear.
 

Fading Fast

Connoisseur
I hope overcoats/topcoats don't fade away.

Wishful thinking, but they're more versatile than a suit and will be more popular. They often have all the benefits and dramatic silhouettes of tailoring, but without as many connotations.

I've seen people wear them as part of streetwear casual ensembles.



That was a very popular look by Kanye some years back. I think this type of outfit looks more natural and coherent than the awkward suit+sneakers look.

Obviously not trad, but I think it's a good thing if streetwear can help pieces of tailoring survive and even thrive.

The balmacaan coat and raglan coats might have seen a resurgence due to this. They naturally just seem to work with basically everything, including casual wear.
I agree. Overcoats seem to work in streetwear outfits better than suits do. To be honest, I've been wearing my overcoats with jeans and sweatshirts since I was a young guy in the '80s, but suits were always only part of a full business-attire ensemble.

A few days ago, now that you can't wait inside, I was waiting outside of Apple (in 20 degree weather with single digit windchills) as I was getting my iPhone battery replaced and a woman walked by in jeans, black boots, a black turtleneck and a perfectly tailored and beautiful polo coat. It was a fantastic looking outfit.

I've noticed, too, that Balmacaans and raglans seem to be having a bit of a moment (even if the terms get abused a bit).
 

delicious_scent

Super Member
I agree. Overcoats seem to work in streetwear outfits better than suits do. To be honest, I've been wearing my overcoats with jeans and sweatshirts since I was a young guy in the '80s, but suits were always only part of a full business-attire ensemble.

A few days ago, now that you can't wait inside, I was waiting outside of Apple (in 20 degree weather with single digit windchills) as I was getting my iPhone battery replaced and a woman walked by in jeans, black boots, a black turtleneck and a perfectly tailored and beautiful polo coat. It was a fantastic looking outfit.

I've noticed, too, that Balmacaans and raglans seem to be having a bit of a moment (even if the terms get abused a bit).
When I first came to AAAC, I was under the impression that overcoats were only ever a "suits only underneath" piece of clothing. Was glad to learn this is not true. There are formal coats that don't dress down well, but that's a different topic.

Hopefully Bals and Raglans are here to stay and aren't just another short term trend.

An article I read in the past talked about how classic mens' coats became a part of womenswear, and now have influenced menswear back in terms of silhouette. My reference point isn't very far, but the slouchy, long coats were being done by women 4-5 years ago before they came back "in" for men the past year.

I imagine the parts of that woman's outfit that were black helped to highlight the colour of the (camel?) polo coat.

I've come around to the colour black. Even a pair of black jeans works surprisingly well in my wardrobe. I've also dug my black linen shirt with just a pair of khakis for a cold, monochromatic look.

Haven't given the black turtleneck a try yet. I know turtlenecks look good on people, but I'm worried I'd overheat in one.
 

Fading Fast

Connoisseur
When I first came to AAAC, I was under the impression that overcoats were only ever a "suits only underneath" piece of clothing. Was glad to learn this is not true. There are formal coats that don't dress down well, but that's a different topic.

Hopefully Bals and Raglans are here to stay and aren't just another short term trend.

An article I read in the past talked about how classic mens' coats became a part of womenswear, and now have influenced menswear back in terms of silhouette. My reference point isn't very far, but the slouchy, long coats were being done by women 4-5 years ago before they came back "in" for men the past year.

I imagine the parts of that woman's outfit that were black helped to highlight the colour of the (camel?) polo coat.

I've come around to the colour black. Even a pair of black jeans works surprisingly well in my wardrobe. I've also dug my black linen shirt with just a pair of khakis for a cold, monochromatic look.

Haven't given the black turtleneck a try yet. I know turtlenecks look good on people, but I'm worried I'd overheat in one.
Yes, her coat was camel and, as you note, camel contrasts beautifully with black. It was a a great look.

I've never owned a polo coat, but wish I had. Now that my existing overcoats don't get enough wear, I can't justify buying one, but it's one I regret never having owned once.
 

drpeter

Super Member
I have acquired a lot of overcoats and topcoats through vintage shops and thrifting. I do have some lovely pieces bought on sales that cost considerably more. A midnight blue cashmere and wool overcoat, warm and elegant-looking, is my top item. Almost thirty years old, it has kept its shape, partly because I wear it only infrequently. I also have a range of outerwear that are hip-length jackets, and these tend to see more use, especially since they are more casual.
 
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Tweedlover

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
I have acquired a lot of overcoats and topcoats through vintage shops and thrifting. I do have some lovely pieces bought on sales that cost considerably more. A midnight blue cashmere and wool overcoat, warm and elegant-looking, is my top item. Almost thirty years old, it has kept its shape, partly because I wear it only infrequently. I also have a range of outwear that are hip-length jackets, and these tend to see more use, especially since they are more casual.
1 of the topcoats I thrifted was a black SB wool/cashmere blend in nearly new condition. Think I paid $20 for it At 10% cashmere, it has enough cashmere to give it a nicely soft feel.
 

drpeter

Super Member
The prices I have paid for overcoats and topcoats in thrift shops range from $10 to $25. If one shops carefully, one can find beautiful items, like the coat you mention. I think a mixture of wool and cashmere is ideal for outerwear. The wool is stronger material, lasts longer and keeps you warm, while the cashmere blended in gives it a nice soft hand. Good choice!

An important factor in buying these items is condition. You must examine every inch of the garment for damage -- moth holes, scraped-off fabric, tears, etc. Some damage can be repaired, others may cost a lot (such as holes that require reweaving). I have picked up rare items that are hard to find with tiny scrapes and decided to wear them as such, no repairs. I think of it as patina, and the garment is supremely functional. After all, an overcoat should be expected to take a few knocks and keep soldiering on, right?
 

delicious_scent

Super Member
Yes, her coat was camel and, as you note, camel contrasts beautifully with black. It was a a great look.

I've never owned a polo coat, but wish I had. Now that my existing overcoats don't get enough wear, I can't justify buying one, but it's one I regret never having owned once.
Bolded is a pretty iron tight reason to not buy one. Nice to see when a lot of us love to enable each other. I also want one, and came to the same conclusion.

With that said, I'm going to be an enabler anyway and say if it will bring you joy, then it's always worth considering :beer:.
Needless to say, now that I'm retired, I only wear jeans with my topcoats and think it looks just fine. Only sport coats I wear now with the jeans are tweed or camel hair.
What shade of jeans do you wear? I think a nice dark wash looks great. I'm unsure of the light wash combos.
The prices I have paid for overcoats and topcoats in thrift shops range from $10 to $25. If one shops carefully, one can find beautiful items, like the coat you mention. I think a mixture of wool and cashmere is ideal for outerwear. The wool is stronger material, lasts longer and keeps you warm, while the cashmere blended in gives it a nice soft hand. Good choice!

An important factor in buying these items is condition. You must examine every inch of the garment for damage -- moth holes, scraped-off fabric, tears, etc. Some damage can be repaired, others may cost a lot (such as holes that require reweaving). I have picked up rare items that are hard to find with tiny scrapes and decided to wear them as such, no repairs. I think of it as patina, and the garment is supremely functional. After all, an overcoat should be expected to take a few knocks and keep soldiering on, right?
I've found thrifting to be more trouble than its worth, both online and offline.

The amount of time needed to spend looking for something that will actually work in your wardrobe was too frustrating for me.

I read a post by someone who lived in a segregated city. Very wealthy people on one side, very poor people on the other street. In-between was a thrift shop, where wealthy people would give up clothes exactly as you described, and were dirt cheap.

I would love to be able to look for treasures in a shop like that. Ethically though, I'd be uncertain and feel greedy actually buying from there.
 

Tweedlover

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
delicious scent, I have 3 pair of jeans, all of which started out dark indigo. 2 of them have faded to a lighter shade of indigo, but still fairly dark. Personally, I think that jeans look good with certain sport coats only when they are a darker hue. Light washes don't look quite right to me with sport coats.
 

drpeter

Super Member
Bolded is a pretty iron tight reason to not buy one. Nice to see when a lot of us love to enable each other. I also want one, and came to the same conclusion.

With that said, I'm going to be an enabler anyway and say if it will bring you joy, then it's always worth considering :beer:.

What shade of jeans do you wear? I think a nice dark wash looks great. I'm unsure of the light wash combos.

I've found thrifting to be more trouble than its worth, both online and offline.

The amount of time needed to spend looking for something that will actually work in your wardrobe was too frustrating for me.

I read a post by someone who lived in a segregated city. Very wealthy people on one side, very poor people on the other street. In-between was a thrift shop, where wealthy people would give up clothes exactly as you described, and were dirt cheap.

I would love to be able to look for treasures in a shop like that. Ethically though, I'd be uncertain and feel greedy actually buying from there.
I suppose we must each make our own decisions regarding thrifting. I have several reasons I can list in defense of the practice:

First, I am retired and have plenty of time to spend in thrift shops and vintage/antique shops. I don't go there just for the clothes, I go there principally for books -- I am a collector, especially of first editions of modern fiction and other books too. I have found some terrific bargains (maybe only for me, but nevertheless bargains) in first editions that I have obtained cheaply, when buying it from an Antiquarian Bookseller would be far more pricey. I also find movies/DVDs at low prices.

Second, I don't live in a segregated city with rich and poor folks "on either side of the track", so to speak. Here in the middle of Wisconsin, my college town is almost 95% white, fairly middle class with some wealthy people also thrown in. Lots of professors like me. And I am a man of colour after all, a light brown to be exact, an Asian Indian. And a former colonial from Malaya, to boot. I confess to being educated in schools run by the British, but a classical education is actually a boon, not a handicap. If you can quote from the Aeneid and from the Mahabharata, you have indeed arrived, LOL.

Third (and this might assuage your sense of guilt), one can give as well as take. And one must. In 2016 when I moved from one flat to another, I gave away two-thirds of my clothes, close to 22 suits and about 30 sets of sports jackets and dress trousers, plus about a hundred dress shirts, all accumulated because I am too lazy to donate clothes on an annual basis, and always postpone it. I gave it to a great program we have in town that provides suits and such to people who are looking for jobs and have to do interviews and later dress smartly for work, but do not have the clothes for doing so. They were astonished at the number of items, and were ready to give me a sworn affidavit for tax deductions, but I said no, since itemizing would still not get me beyond the threshold for a claim. Another such giveaway is coming up this summer. I will go through all my clothes and happily give away things I don't think I will wear very often, and things that are not special in some way.

Fourth, you are making an impact on the environment, however small, by not buying new clothes from shops. Cotton, wool, leather and other natural fibres which we all prize, extract a huge toll on our environment. One statistic that I often like to cite is this: The amount of water needed to grow enough cotton for a single 100% cotton T shirt is around 700 gallons! When I buy clothes from a thrift shop, I am participating in re-use, which will make a difference, however tiny -- and if more people do this, the impact will be significant. Two weeks ago, I bought a pair of blue-grey flannels from O'Connell's. It was the first piece I had bought brand new in about five or six years. On occasion, I have found a brand new piece, or one in close to mint condition, but again in thrift shops at low prices. I have slowly begun to change my standards regarding how much man-made fibre I will accept in clothes, although artificial fibres and cloth too may have environmental impact.

So, LOL, you should be feeling good, ethically, rather than bad if you thrift! If you contribute your own unwanted clothes to the thrifting cycle, I believe you have earned the right to pick up some thrifted items.
 
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