You may remember my friend Caroline, she bravely appeared on the blog – in control pants and very little else – the December before last. We thanked her for her services to womankind and Caroline generously agreed to do some more modelling. Here she is with her clothes on, road-testing the Women’s Luxe Down Parka from Lands’ End:
by a girl ahead of me in the queue. She was setting off for work wearing – as you
do in mid-December – a lightweight leather jacket, miniskirt and ballet flats.
No tights, of course, no hat, no gloves – in fact, no concession at all to the
fact that it was around 0 degrees out and completely Nordic. From the way she
was holding the edges of her jacket together, it was obvious she was frozen,
but I suppose she figured it was worth it. After all, if she’d worn a coat like
a normal person, the rest of us in the queue wouldn’t have been able to admire
her beauteous 21-year-old form.
that makes me glad I’m old. Young women evidently believe that if they wrap up
in a scarf, hat and down jacket (ie, what I was wearing), they’ll look frumpy. Well,
maybe they would. But guess what? They’d feel so much better, because nothing
beats the feeling of not freezing your butt off. I know she wouldn’t have
believed that, though. It’s something you don’t discover till you’re 40.
I was young, my winter coat was an unlined linen swing coat, under which, in
really cold weather, I might wear a
cardigan. Looking stylish was the goal, and if I froze, well, it was in the
service of fashion. But now, twenty-odd years later, I’d never leave the house
on a cold day without a down jacket, gloves, scarf and hat. (For especially
Arctic conditions, I also have little glove-warmers – plastic sachets you
pre-heat in the microwave and then wear inside your gloves. Though talking
about them is making me feel a bit orthopaedic, so forget I mentioned them).
when the temperature plummets, I care
more about comfort than glamour: I’d just rather be warm than cool. Maybe this is
a point all of us reach eventually, when we realise that it’s okay to let go of
certain ideas about how we should look. I appreciate that it’s the thin end of
the wedge, but sometimes you have to bow to the demands of your
been a near-revelation. I’d been getting through the last few winters in a Gap
down jacket, which was fine, but this jacket is something else. Not only is it
much warmer, it has the kind of little touches that make me groan with
pleasure: a fleecy neck and cuffs (think how chilly your neck gets), soft, deep
pockets so you can thrust your hands in up to your forearms and three additional
buttoned/zipped pockets for carrying things. There’s also a detachable hood and
a belt, neither of which I use (the belt might make me look more hourglassy, but
I prefer the extra waist-room). I’m delighted by this jacket as I haven’t been
by an piece of clothing since…I can’t even remember. I may never be cool again.
But, dammit, I’ll be warm.
Has your wardrobe changed over the years? Do you care more about comfort than glamour?
PS The parka’s in the sale!