Quest for the Perfect Winter Coat

Last weekend, as I was grocery shopping, my coat got snagged on a screw protruding from a display. It now has a two-inch rip in the side. Frustrating, but one day I will get around to stitching it up (just like I did with my fall jacket that got in a fight with a thorn bush the first day I wore it). I am definitely not planning on replacing it, since, as we all know, finding the perfect winter coat is near impossible.

So, what are your winter coat requirements? Here is my laundry list of must-haves:

Wearing my favorite winter coat while walking a St. Hubert’s dog, Kaylla.

Wearing my favorite winter coat while walking a St. Hubert’s dog, Kaylla.

1) Zippered pockets Ok, no brainer. Why would any designer even think about making a winter coat without zippered pockets? How else are you meant to contain your errant gloves? And the pockets had better be deep enough to hold a pair of gloves and a hat. I never understand short pockets. I rarely use my inside phone pocket. I should, though. Another good feature, but not a deal-breaker.

2) Hood Hello, doesn’t winter imply cold and snow? Though I may not wear my hood much, there are definitely days I need it and appreciate it! Some coats have removable hoods, which, I guess is a good idea, but I’d be likely to take it off and lose it, so I’d better stick to permanent ones.

3) Water Repellant Having kids, especially ones who want you to play in the snow with them, helps you realize the importance of a water-repellant coat! Who wants to feel (and smell) like a wet dog after playing (or even just walking) in the snow in a wool coat?

4) Color Though I would settle for black if all my other requirements were met, I’d much prefer a splash of color—usually still in the dark tones. My current coat is a deep pink. My fall coat is navy. A bit of color brightens up the dull winter days.

5) Length My current coat comes to about mid-thigh, which is perfect for keeping my lower half warm and keeping my seat dry when sitting on snow-covered benches. The mid-thigh length is also much easier to walk in than a full-length coat.

6) Weight Not too light, not too heavy, but still warm. One coat I had a few years ago felt like I was weighed down by bricks.

7) Puffiness Mild puff is good, but I don’t want to talk around feeling like the Michelin Man!

Ok, I guess I don’t have that many requirements, but, trust me when I say even with this short list, it is hard to find the perfect coat. A few of my friends around town have the same coat as I do, and when we pass each other we don’t think “Ugh, she’s wearing the same coat!” we think “Smart woman! She sure knows a great coat!”