Or is it a Barbour coat??
You need one for your life. I already own the classic navy “Beadnell” – and the British pronounce it “BEED-null”. It’s named after an Eastern Coastal town in Northumberland, England where it apparently rains a lot.
Barbour coats were first made for fisherman who traveled and sailed all over, and obviously didn’t want sopping wet clothes – wax is a great protector from that. Quality Egyptian cotton is used for the coats which will be later coated with Sylkoil to protect them from moisture. The waxed jackets are waterproof, and the Barbour company has been issued three Royal Warrants (it’s a big deal, Google it!). All the British royals own them, probably several of them, and they’re considered “English countryside” style.
But why in the world have Barbour jackets become so popular in the United States in the past few years, when the rest of the world has known about them for decades? America, you’re a bit slow on the uptake 😀
Better late than never, it’s time to get with the program and buy a very practical “coat for life” (see video below). Yes, a Barbour coat is an investment piece, but you’ll wear it often, others will want to borrow it, and you’ll hand it down later. You’ll end up having your picture taken in it – I mean selfies, group photos, family gatherings….somehow, that dang coat will end up in more photos than you planned. And then your friends and family will buy them. And then you’ll notice people wearing them while you’re out. And then you’ll notice them when you watch TV or see them in movies. And you’ll see them in magazines…
They’ve now become part of the world’s fabric, literally.
I’m not a Yuppie, Preppy, or Hipster, but I love my Beadnell, and I highly recommend getting any Barbour jacket – even women buy men’s Barbours, so don’t be afraid to go try one on. It’s waxy when you first get it, but the crunchy doesn’t last long. Give it time to “settle out”. You should know that the navy is a dark, “inky” navy and it’s almost black, so if you’re going to pair it with some blues to match, you’ll probably want to take it with you shopping.
Side note – the Beadnell waxed is a “convertible”. It comes to you as a basic jacket, but you can buy a hood that snaps on, made of the same material as the jacket (yes, it’s waxed!). Also, the hood has a light wire frame inside around the ‘face’ so it has a slight structure to it. You can also buy a “liner” to zip in, adding a second insulating layer inside for warmth. It’s basically a vest within the jacket, keeping your core warm. Barbour makes them color coordinated, but you don’t necessarily have to buy them to match. I bought all navy, and even though the liner doesn’t have a collar to speak of, I wear mine by itself with a scarf – you don’t need a collar if you wear a scarf.
I don’t know if you’ve noticed that plaid is everywhere, although really, it never goes out of fashion anyway. The plaid, or tartan, prints that Barbour use are legitimately Scottish, because the Barbour name itself is from Scotland. The Barbour family has, as is tradition, a Scottish tartan pattern associated with their name, and they use the varieties of their particular tartans for use on their jackets – novel, eh? So there’s a tribute to their heritage, and they take pride in the manufacture of their clothing. They’ve been in business for over 120 years, and members of the family have been running the company for all those years. Currently, Dame Margaret Barbour is the company’s Chairman (interesting fact, she married into the family!).
Barbour also makes quilted jackets, and they’re fleece-lined, and very cozy. My favorite of those is the Beadnell quilted (fancy that!). It’s a little longer than the waxed version, and it’s worn best if it’s ‘slim fitted’ against the body for warmth. In other words, you may not need to layer much underneath it because it’s quite warm. It has the lovely hand warmer pockets like the original Beadnell, which is literally “handy”. OK, I’ll stop…
Barbour started out outfitting men, so of course, they have a full line of gear, and a full line of accessories. They even have an edgy “moto” styled jacket line for men – a collaboration with the well-known British motorcycle brand Triumph has yielded a great collection. Have a pup who needs a coat? Barky’s needs can be well-suited here.
WOMEN’S KNITWEAR/SWEATERS (Brits call them “jumpers”)
Here are some websites to demonstrate how to style your Barbour clothing:
The Fall Uniform – Beadnell, jeans, plaid shirt, fleece jacket, boots
“A Forever Coat” – great close-up pictures of the Beadnell
The British Invasion – Barbour jackets
How to wear a Barbour jacket (with floral/heritage print inside)
By the Barbour Company – “A Jacket For Life”
By the Barbour Company – “Behind the scenes of a Barbour original”
WHERE TO BUY A BEADNELL ON SALE:
It’s not always on sale, you just have to check…
And I recommend Nordstrom for two reasons: 1) their rewards program, because you get money back when you spend money there, and 2) their return policy is amazing, 3) their salespeople are very knowledgeable about the wear and care, and if you need help matching clothes and accessories, just ask.