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Capsule classics: 20 trench coats we're arming ourselves with right now

Harper's Bazaar (UK) Logo By Abigail Southan of Harper's Bazaar (UK) | Slide 1 of 21: Versatile, practical and lightweight to layer, the best trench coats are more than transitional heroes: they’ll see you through almost every situation, in any season. They're even more essential now that pub gardens and restaurant terraces have re-opened and all socialising is to be done alfresco. Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Meryl Streep in Kramer Vs Kramer or Kate Moss in countless Burberry campaigns – the trench coat has been in en vogue for over a century. And, despite being created for military purposes back in 1912, its appeal has lasted through decades of different dress codes. Because, thrown over everything from jeans and a Breton top to slinky evening dresses, its functionality immediately translates to effortlessness (a look more coveted than any It bag).The wardrobe staple hasn’t changed much in that time. So you can still find heavy cotton-gabardine numbers with the trademark storms flaps, buckles and and belting everywhere from Off-White to Arket. However, with so many re-interpretations debuting on the catwalk every season, it’s hard not to be tempted by fresh styles. At the autumn/winter 2021 shows, trenches were tailored to ladylike perfection at Erdem, panelled with quilted satin at Chloé, and re-worked in glossy vinyl and gold metallics by Isabel Marant and Chanel.Still, when you’re spending money on a capsule classic, you need to think smart: invest in something with longevity, but don’t be afraid of subtle twists or playful details. From glossy leather and vinyl to organza designs, we’ve rounded up 15 of the best trench coats that are both timeless and on-trend at the same time.

Versatile, practical and lightweight to layer, the best trench coats are more than transitional heroes: they’ll see you through almost every situation, in any season. They're even more essential now that pub gardens and restaurant terraces have re-opened and all socialising is to be done alfresco.

Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Meryl Streep in Kramer Vs Kramer or Kate Moss in countless Burberry campaigns – the trench coat has been in en vogue for over a century. And, despite being created for military purposes back in 1912, its appeal has lasted through decades of different dress codes. Because, thrown over everything from jeans and a Breton top to slinky evening dresses, its functionality immediately translates to effortlessness (a look more coveted than any It bag).

The wardrobe staple hasn’t changed much in that time. So you can still find heavy cotton-gabardine numbers with the trademark storms flaps, buckles and and belting everywhere from Off-White to Arket. However, with so many re-interpretations debuting on the catwalk every season, it’s hard not to be tempted by fresh styles. At the autumn/winter 2021 shows, trenches were tailored to ladylike perfection at Erdem, panelled with quilted satin at Chloé, and re-worked in glossy vinyl and gold metallics by Isabel Marant and Chanel.

Still, when you’re spending money on a capsule classic, you need to think smart: invest in something with longevity, but don’t be afraid of subtle twists or playful details. From glossy leather and vinyl to organza designs, we’ve rounded up 15 of the best trench coats that are both timeless and on-trend at the same time.

© Christian Vierig

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