WORDS BY ASHLEIGH GRIBBON
The trench, the cape and the puffer: this season’s best outerwear is a re-evaluation of the classics. And whether you consider yourself a classic minimalist who values perenniality above all, or an expressionist in search of the most exciting emerging brands, our global network of boutiques plays host to this fall’s greatest edit of coats and jackets — whatever your style.
Five stores — all of which can be found in Europe, and are shoppable from anywhere in the world via FARFETCH — have honed their curation in on the season’s most noteworthy aesthetics. From modern romantic coats to jackets with a streetwear inflection, the boutique buyers behind this season’s best outerwear offerings reveal the designs they’re championing this season, and the labels to look to now.
For classic outerwear: Julian Fashion, Italy
A revered boutique that’s known for its contemporary aesthetic and pioneering designer collections, Julian Fashion’s well-thought-out edit plays host to the season’s most considered outerwear. ‘Our edit this season is shaped by refined pieces that lend themselves to mix-and-match styling,’ says the boutique’s owner, Sabina Zabberoni. ‘Quality craftsmanship, materials and considered details are key when choosing a timeless coat or jacket — and make sure it has a good lining, too. A piece not only needs to look good, but be functional and practical. You need to keep in mind when and where you’ll be wearing it and what you can wear it with. It is, after all, a true closet classic. Some of the highlights this season come courtesy of Low Classic, Nanushka, Materiel and Ienki Ienki.’
For expressive styles: Jean Pierre Bua, Spain
'Our selection of designers venture outside the classic and conventional canons with new silhouettes and prints, turning each of their designs into an experience,’ explains Jean Pierre Bua, CEO and founder of the boutique, which was conceived in the 90s with the intention of curating an innovative selection of brands and pieces for the Spanish market. ‘Our outerwear is focused on finding pieces that communicate the radical need to stand out from the crowd as opposed to the norm of focusing all expression solely on the inside,’ he explains.
'Designers like Marni, Maison Margiela and Dries Van Noten propose pieces where all the attention of the look falls on the outside. [More emerging] designers like Barbara Bologna — who expresses herself through black velvet and provocative prints — are also offering exciting pieces within outerwear this season. I also like [Simon Porte] Jacquemus’ designs, with his Mediterranean vision of fashion, as well as the urban touches of Coperni. When it comes to styling these pieces, Marni's platforms will always be the perfect way to elevate a look and Maison Margiela's iconic Tabi is the best bet for unconventional fashion fans.’
For the modern romantic: Gente Roma, Italy
With 10 branches situated among Rome’s shopping districts, Gente Roma has established itself as a fashion landmark in the Italian capital. The selection across its boutiques play host to some of the world’s major houses, with an outerwear collection that champions fashion’s most-loved modern romantics. ‘A good-quality coat lends itself to styling all through the year,’ says the store’s sales manager and womenswear buyer, Carolina Addadi. ‘For me, an elegant calf-length cashmere coat with an essential silhouette is a must-have this season. A distinctive feature could be a soft belt or double-breasted front with decorative jewel buttons. Another must is an elegant revision of wool outerwear, a sophisticated blend between a cape and a coat. A coat is such a key piece for fall — not only does it protect us from the cold but it also has to align to our taste and lifestyle. Patou, Prada and Jacquemus are among the key designers to look out for this season.’
For the streetwear fanatic: MAX-B, Spain
Found in the historical center of Vigo, Max-B’s new-season outerwear curation is shaped by sports-inspired pieces fit for day-to-day styling. ‘Since opening in 1984, our focus has been to create a great space dedicated to the customer who seeks excellence,’ explains store owner, Pino Dominguez. ‘Straight and pure lines dominate, highlighting the spaciousness of the interior.’ On the store’s unrivalled curation of streetwear-influenced jackets and coats he adds: ‘Design and quality are key when choosing new outerwear. We take inspiration from the latest trends [and apply it to] our carefully considered collection. Right now, the most popular brands are Balenciaga, Saint Laurent, Loewe, Valentino and Fendi. Coperni is [also doing] exciting streetwear-inspired outerwear this season.’
For all-out glamour: Modes, Italy
Since 1971, Modes has evolved into a series of striking independent boutiques located all over Italy. It plays host to an extensive range of the world’s most revered designers, with its fall/winter 2021 outerwear offering honing in on the season’s most high-impact pieces. ‘It’s important to consider how a piece can enhance your wardrobe,’ says XX, the store’s XX. ‘This season, the most important factor is the silhouette: a strong statement defined by padded shoulders, wide collars and architectural splits, as well as statement finishing touches. Saks Potts offers a combination of glamour and coziness with eco–fur coats and patent leather trenches, while shoes and bags courtesy of The Attico and Amina Muaddi are go-to choices when it comes to finishing a strong look.’