This season's corduroy coat has certainly made an impression on writer and friend of Drake's, Aleks Cvetkovic. Allow him to convince you, too.
Normally, as a rather spoilt style writer, I’m treated to a sneaky peek of the Drake’s new season collections ahead of their release, but this season, snowed under by deadlines, I didn’t manage it. So, when Lucas, London’s Clifford Street store manager, sent me a picture of this coat the day it came in (the tease), my heart skipped a beat. I’ve got a real thing for corduroy, and for camel coats, and for anything with a slight ‘70s bent, and Lucas had correctly identified that this particular coat pushes all those buttons in spades.
If you’re into menswear, you may well feel the same way. This piece ticks a lot of current men’s style boxes. First up, corduroy’s been in ascendency for two or three winter seasons, and now it’s probably the single most fashionable cloth in men’s clothing – whether in independent menswear like this, or designer fashion. Everyone from Ralph Lauren, to Ami Paris, has put a spin on it.
As you’d expect, Drake’s has gone to town with corduroy, too; offering a pair of chic garment-dyed needlecord button-downs, three different pairs of washed cord chinos, plus two washed cord Easyday suits, the virtues of which were recently extolled on this very journal, by my esteemed colleague Mr Carvell.
Where this coat differs from the other corduroy pieces in the collection is in the cloth itself; this is cut in a robust coating-weight corduroy, woven in Italy with the thickest of wales and a deep, indulgent pile. Despite its softness, it’s also as robust as can be thanks to its impressive density. This is a cloth that’ll patinate beautifully as its worn – the more, the better. The camel colour is extremely versatile, the ideal shade to wear in either formal or casual contexts, and thanks to the coat’s clean lines, it sits comfortably over everything from unstructured tailoring to chunky Shetland knits. The raglan sleeves are relaxed, as are the inset welt pockets, but the revere collar and belt are touches that lend the coat just a touch of attitude.
You may not, like myself, want to style this as would a 1970s car-dealer, but hopefully have the sense to wear it with a nod to this season’s Drake’s look book; over earthy, subtly checked tweed sports coats, garment-dyed chinos, your favourite heavy flannel trousers and soft point collar shirts. It’s a coat to have fun with; designed with character and charm, and deserves to be worn with similarly characterful stuff.
These merits aside, there’s one other very good reason to take the plunge on a piece like this. Quite simply, it’s not a ‘first’ coat. If you’re looking at this thinking ‘I just can’t live without it’, you’ve almost certainly got your navy or grey go-to, and your classic beige raincoat, and I hope are considering something a little different. Well, consider no longer. This coat is quirky, but makes an elegant statement, plus with its quilted lining it’s bullet-proof, too.
Corduroy might be in vogue, but a piece like this has enduring appeal; true to the Drake’s way of doing things. Invest this season, and you’ll enjoy it for many winters to come. Guaranteed.