Spotlight On: The Trench Coat

8th May 2019

2019; return of the trench coat (not mac).

It’s an outerwear classic that comes to our sartorial conscience every now and again and re-emerges to remind us of its iconic presence.

A truly British design that has transcended from military outerwear excellence to Hollywood status symbol to major catwalk call and much-loved capsule wardrobe item.

In this blog post we take a closer look at all things past and present, why the trench is still a popular wardrobe staple today as it was back then, and not forgetting contemporary tips for styling and wearing yours.

A British Classic

Lakeland Leather Trench Coat Lakeland Leather Trench Coats 1980

The fashion buzzwords ‘classic’, ‘timeless’ and ‘iconic’ are totally over-used to describe every item in our wardrobe. No exaggeration. But they honestly couldn’t be more correct for the trench. It’s not just a one-time one-trend thing, it’s a permanent thing. It’s been around for over 100 years and it’s definitely not going anywhere anytime soon. So it’s fair to say the trench deserves and is true to these overused adjectives of the fashion lexicon.

When you think of a trench coat you will more than likely think of the long length with wide lapels, tie waist, double breasted button fastening with perhaps epaulettes and distinctive storm flaps.  These design features have barely been altered since its creation – which makes the trench completely iconic. New seasons and new trends bring us an abundance of new trench colours and materials, keeping styling interesting and effortless while still staying true to its military heritage.

The History of the Trench Coat

leather trench

Dating back to the First World War, the trench coat was worn as a layer of protection by army officers who frequented the trenches, hence the name. It was during WW1 that the outerwear piece took shape and rose out of the trenches as a trusty garment that still pays homage to its military influences today. Soon after the war Burberry and Aquascutum both claimed the trench as their own and consequently, the modern trench that we know today was born.

The Trench Coat in Hollywood

Name a more iconic outerwear piece in film. From Humphrey Bogart in Casablanca to Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s there has been no better. It’s cinematically versatile and has been confidently worn by on screen slick gangsters, daring detectives, and comic book heroes. I think it’s safe to say Hollywood loves a trench coat. The romanticising of the trench by the movies has allowed it to be slightly adapted and modelled to the female wearer; simplified details and slimmer styling, securing its well-received place in fashion.

The Trench Coat Today

From high street to high fashion the trench coat is now a staple everywhere. Photographed on the likes of Kate Moss, Cara Delevingne and the Royal Meghan Markle it isn’t a statement, it’s subtle sense. It’s typical to see a trench coat with original designs and detailing, although not now crafted for the same purpose as they once were. Take the storm flap for example, once designed to soften the rifle blow its now purpose is as a vent to allow rain to run away from the coat. Genius. Although its style is forefront, the trench is also ever so practical and dependable in the changing weather conditions. The double-breasted tailoring, longer length and waist and cuff ties can be adjusted and fitted to protect you from the unpredictable weather that Britain prevails.

Our Trench Coats

men and women trench coats Lakeland Leather Trench Coats Autumn/Winter 1986

Seeing as we are leather experts there’s no surprise that we have crafted a beautiful long leather trench coat in a pecan brown colourway. This leather trench is ultimately timeless and will transcend every season year after year. The Tanya offers the perfect balance between practicality and style featuring traditional trench features including storm flaps, lapel collar and tie waist and cuffs. Meticulously crafted from the softest aniline leather, it will undoubtedly last a life time and look equally as great with jeans and flats for a casual ensemble or with a dress and heels for a dressy aesthetic.

leather trench coat Tanya Leather Trench Coat in Pecan Brown

And to evolve our brand over the last few years we have embraced all things faux; faux leather, faux sheepskin and faux suede. So of course we’ve designed a faux suede trench coat with a classic fit-and-flare silhouette, crafted for the modern woman who adores traditional styling, without the leather price tag.

faux trench coat Faux Trench Coat

To find your wardrobe staple browse our range of leathers and don’t forget to share your trench looks and styling using #lakelandleather on Instagram.

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