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The Classic Pea Coat Is Given An Overhaul

Topman collaborations reinvent a style staple

The Classic Pea Coat Is Given An Overhaul
Danielle de Wolfe
18 September 2011

The arrival of autumn is usually signposted by several significant moments. Kicking through a pile of fallen leaves, mothballing T-shirts until next year and grappling with a wind-blown umbrella are chief among them, but it’s finally finding a new winter coat that’s the most satisfying. And with that in mind, Topman has enlisted a crack team to rework a weather-battling classic for a bold new range.

Project Pea Coat saw six leading designers challenged to give the naval outerwear their own twist. And the results show an eclectic array of influences.

The home team at Topman Design has incorporated a snug sheepskin-style collar into its effort (pictured bottom right), Todd Lynn has added rock star zips and a trench-like belt to his, and Alister Mackie worked from a Forties coat that belonged to Primal Scream’s Bobby Gillespie to give his a more streamlined, simple look (pictured top right). Well, it’s as simple as something with a paisley lining can be.

Elsewhere, the team at Timo Weiland has turned in a far longer, Sixties-influenced design, New Yorker Tim Hamilton has added an elegantly modern touch by including mirrored buttons and giving it a detachable wet-look waistcoat. But the best of the collection is James Small’s elegant two-tone creation with military buttons and an outsize collar (pictured main).

Prices start from a very reasonable £130, and they arrive in store on 3 October. It’s a diverse collection that should finally put an end to that other autumn tradition: traipsing around the aisles of a striplit shop for hours without once spotting a decent jacket to try on.