Shop, Compare, and Purchase Ladies Coats
Shop, Compare, and Purchase Ladies Coats
Ladies coats are a relatively new fashion addition. Up until the late eighteenth century, the garment of choice for a lady’s outerwear was a cloak or cape. These could be plain or ornately decorated, they offered warmth, and they were also modest. Around 1790, some women began to wear form fitting redingotes, primarily for riding. Pelisses were also fashionable for a time, although most women still preferred a cloak which would not crush or wrinkle the clothing underneath the style of ladies coats being offered at the time.
In the early 1800s, fashions changed, and ladies coats were again out of vogue. The new dress styles featured huge sleeves, such as the mutton leg styles, that simply did not fit within the restrictions of fashionable ladies coats. It took nearly another century before ladies coats would gain prominence.
In the years just before World War I, an advance in technology gave a boost to ladies coats. Early automobiles were often open to the elements, and with few paved roads they tended to stir up a lot of dust. Well dressed ladies out for a ride needed something to protect their clothing. Dusters, full length ladies coats that would keep their dresses clean, became very popular, especially among younger women.
During this time, the cape and cloak began to evolve into more fitted garments with sleeves and modern ladies coats were born. These continued to grow in popularity during the “flapper” era, when slim skirts eliminated the problems that bustles and fuller skirts had caused when designing ladies coats. As more and more women began to work outside of the home, the need for sensible outerwear furthered the sales of ladies coats.
Today, it is possible to find ladies coats in a wide variety of styles, colors, fabrics, and price ranges. There is no one coat that is perfect for every woman, but the number of choices make it possible for everyone to find one that is perfect for her. Lifestyle, body type, and budget can all be included in the equation when selecting a new coat.
Ladies coats can be fashionable, functional, or both. They can be economical or expensive, all natural or synthetic. Some are offerings from famous fashion designers, while other attractive fashions are created by nameless company designers. Ladies coats are sold by an assortment of retailers, from “super centers” and department stores to upscale clothing shops and furriers.
When shopping for ladies coats, it can be helpful to understand some of the terms used in describing them. One of the greatest areas of variation occurs in the description of sleeve types used for ladies coats. Set-in sleeves are a standard type where the seam connecting the sleeve to the coat falls at the natural shoulder and encircles the armpit. Raglan sleeves are cut on the diagonal and connected from the collar to the underarm. Kimono sleeves are full, flowing sleeves reminiscent of an Oriental robe. Dolman sleeves are not separate pieces but are cut with the coat pieces and are wide at the armpit, then taper to the wrist. In ladies coats, a cap sleeve has a ruffle or small cape sewn into the armhole with the sleeve.
Ladies coats may be single breasted, with one row of buttons down the front, or double breasted, with two rows of buttons. The second row may be fully functional or they may be sewn on strictly for decoration, a common design for ladies coats. An asymmetrical wrap closing will cross at a diagonal and be secured on the opposite side. A placket closure has a flap of material that covers the buttons or zipper used to fasten the coat.
Wool is commonly used for ladies coats. It is warm, resists moisture, and is very durable. In addition to sheep, wool can come from goats (cashmere and mohair) or from alpacas. It can be used alone or blended with other natural or man-made fibers. Gabardine, tweed, and worsted are all types of woolen fabrics that can be used in making ladies coats.
A variety of synthetic fabrics, such as acrylic, polyester, and olefin, are also used to make ladies coats. These fabrics offer water repellent properties, are less prone to wrinkling, and are easy to clean. They can be used alone or blended with natural fibers.
Leather is a popular choice for ladies coats. It offers warmth and softness, but requires care to maintain its looks. Leather needs to be professionally treated to make it repel water or else it can become stiff. Kid leather is typically the softest variety used for ladies coats and jackets. Denim and corduroy are also used extensively for ladies coats. Both are cotton based fabrics that are often blended with synthetics to make them more resistant to wrinkling and to increase its elasticity.
Ladies coats may also be made entirely from fur or trimmed with fur. Rabbit and fox are typically among the least expensive furs, while ermine and sable are among the most expensive. Furs such as mink and chinchilla usually fall in the middle price ranges. Fur can be left in its natural state or dyed to imitate more exotic endangered species. Fake fur is sometimes substituted for genuine fur for ladies coats.
There are many different cuts available for ladies coats. Trench coat styles became popular after World War I and were based on the designs worn by the soldiers. Military style ladies coats are typically fitted to the waist and may either continue in a slim line or flare to the hem. Cropped styles end at or just above the natural waist. Car coats are roughly three quarter length or shorter ladies coats that were originally designed for comfort while driving or riding. Bomber or aviator styles end at the waist, and the hem is normally elasticized for ladies coats. Trapeze coats are cut full to add movement and “swing” to the silhouette.
Whether the need is for a water repellent trench coat for rainy days, a comfortable jacket for the ski slopes, or a winter coat to wear over suits, ladies coats can be found for any occasion. From casual to professional or subdued shades to neon colors, it is virtually impossible to fail to find whatever types of ladies coats are being sought.