I know I may have killed it a bit on the adjectives there, but the trench coat is an article of clothing of Smithsonian proportions. Not only will the trench coat never go out of style, but there are very few ways in which this piece can be butchered beyond recognition, which is what makes it so essential. It's the perfect coat for work, shul, or walking down the street, and naturally--it's tzniut (as most outerwear is, of course).
First, if you don't have a trench coat, it's ok...I forgive you. So does Hashem, but just to be sure, make sure you do the whole Tashlich thing on Rosh Hashana, ok? I only have so much clout with the big guy, and nothing says 'forgive me' like throwing bread into a body of natural water.
If you do have a trench coat, then you know what I'm talking about. There are very few elements that change on a classic trench. I'm betting you turn to your trench coat every Fall and Spring like a security blanket, and for that I commend you.
What you want to pay attention to with trench varieties:
The first is length; there are shorter trenches and longer trenches, and whichever you choose is totally up to you. Consider your height and weight when choosing a length, though. If you are on the shorter or stouter side, you may want to choose a shorter length trench--too much material might leave you swimming in your coat, and then you'll look ridiculous. Looking ridiculous defeats the purpose of a trench coat, so be mindful. Taller and thinner girls can pull of the longer trench a bit better, but ideally you want your trench to fall right below that fabulous behind of yours to right above your knee.
The second element that changes most on a trench coat is pocket placement. Not all trenches have pockets, but for those that do, it makes a difference. Like with length, you wanna pay attention to your body proportions. If there are big, bulky, horizontal pockets, it's best if you are taller and leaner. Angled pockets on the front of a trench are much more slimming and are the perfect for those who feel like their lunch hasn't digested...from two years ago. I know--I've been there.
Another thing you may want to keep in mind is belt placement. Ideally, the belt should be tied on the waist, NOT the hips; cinching at the waist is crucial in achieving the quintessential trench look, so if you have found a trench you love, but the belt is all wrong, then take it to your tailor and have them adjust the belt loops.
Finally, we come to color. Nothing says classic trench like a beige or camel colored coat. I understand the variety that comes with incorporating darker colors or even more bold colors with a trench, and that is totally, one-hundred percent OK. If you feel like going that route, amen, sista! But if you are looking for the classic route, go for the beige. It will last you forever, and will always make you look like a million bucks.
Try these classics. Remember you are investing in a long term piece of clothing, so be selective in which trench you choose, and remember to love it.
This Calvin Klein is on sale. RUN to this. Now. Click here to buy!
If you are looking for something darker, this Michael Kors (also on sale!) is great. It's shorter and has pockets, but it's classic. (P.S. Shocker--it comes in beige too. Keep this in mind if you want to wear your trench in the Spring). Buy me here!
If you like color, then click here to buy this number from DKNY. Yet again, I deliver you a sale item piece, AND it's machine washable. You are so very welcome.
As we transition into fall and all the chagim, the weather can be unpredictable; having a trench on hand is like having the emergency kit in your car with the flare gun, the jumpers, the flashlight, and the tool kit...essential. Consider your trench your Essential-Fall-Wardrobe-Emergency-Tool-Kit, only this tool-kit has all the 'flair' you need without out pulling out the big guns. (Oy, that was a really bad pun, wasn't it?)
FYI, Inspector Gadget wore a trench coat too...if that's not classic, I don't know what is. *This message will self destruct.* Just kidding. Go, go gadget, go and get yourself a trench coat.