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Collectif Annabele princess coat in green

retro coat and faux fur hat

Collectif mint green Annabelle coat

Rubin in the snow

retro-inspired green coat with faux fur collar and cuffs

red hair in the winter sun

Apologies for the overload of images in this post, folks: can you tell I REALLY love this coat?

If you’re anything like me, and tend to wear full, midi-length skirts a lot, you probably know how difficult it can be to find outerwear that works with them. It’s fine in the spring/summer, when you don’t need a coat, or even in the early autumn, when you can wear a short, fitted jacket, but once the temperature really drops, it’s another story altogether. I mean, I have tons of coats, and I love them all, but until I discovered Collectif’s ‘Annabelle’ princess coat, there wasn’t a single one of them that could be worn with my favourite skirts and dresses.

No, seriously: most of my coats hit above the knee or just on the knee, and most of my skirts/dresses hit a couple of inches below the knee. That ‘layered’ look is one of those things I’ve had to file under ‘Things That Are Fine on Other People, But Frumpy On Me’: I don’t really know WHY it makes me look/feel super-frumpy to have my skirt dangling a few inches below a long coat, but for some reason it does, so I’ve learned not to question it.

Of course, the other issue with wearing a coat that’s shorter than your shirt is that it restricts you to only wearing skirts that work with the colour of the coat. As with the layering, I know plenty of people who can clash colours or mix patterns all day long, and look amazing: I, however, just look like I’ve gotten dressed in the dark, so if I’m wearing a bright green coat, say, I’m not going to be able to wear that bright red skirt with it  – or not unless I’m TRYING to look like one of Santa’s Little Helpers, obviously. And I’m normally not.

All of this, as I’m sure you’ve gathered, is my way of justifying the purchase of yet another coat. Not that I necessarily feel I NEED to justify it, obviously, but earlier this year the penny finally dropped, and I realised the main reason I hate winter fashion so much has nothing to do with the winter fashion – it’s all about the coats, which, all too often, force me to wear something I don’t really want to wear, just so it doesn’t clash or, er, ‘dangle’. I still wear my skirts and dresses if I’m going somewhere I’ll be able to remove my outerwear the second I arrive, but if I’m going to be outdoors for a while, I’ll generally end up wearing jeans or trousers, which is perfectly fine (I mean, I DO like jeans and trousers, too), but means that a lot of my favourite items get neglected, purely because I don’t have the right coat to wear with them.

Well, I’ve now solved that particular problem: this coat is long enough and full enough to go over even my biggest skirts and dresses without looking awkward, and, as an added bonus, it’s green. I’d actually had my eye on it for a while, but when it was reduced by 50% in the sale last week, I figured it was now or never. It arrived just in time for the flurries of snow we’ve been getting all week, and also just in time for me to steal this faux fur hat from my mum. Yes, I know it’s a little bit theatrical, and I wouldn’t wear it every day, but who am I resist the drama of a big, furry hat, which makes me feel like an extra in Doctor Zhivago? Exactly

(P.S I thought I might start sharing some out-takes and bonus shots from my outfit posts over on my Facebook page, so make sure you’re following if you want to see them!]

faux fur hat

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WEARING: Collectif Annabelle Princess coat, borrowed hat, Topshop boots (old)

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28 Comments
  • Elise
    January 15, 2015

    Wow I love the drama of this look! And I totally sympathise with your dilemma, it’s hard to find a coat that looks right with everything 🙂

  • Eilidh
    January 15, 2015

    This coat is so unique, I’ve never seen anything like it. So pretty! Love the snowy setting for the pics too 🙂

    Maisy Meow | Fashion and Beauty Blog

  • Sian
    January 15, 2015

    I bought the short version of this coat with the matching pencil skirt in the sale too! The skirt is a little bit on the tight side, being made out of the same material as the coat so kiiiind of difficult to sit down in, but awesome anyway. I’d imagine this coat has the same lining as mine too – so pretty!
    And I definitely agree with you on the midi skirt/dress with coat issue. I don’t wear midi skirts exclusively, but when I do, it’s so difficult to figure out how to layer up around it – generally I just go for a shorter jacket/coat, but as you said, that’s kind of difficult to do when it’s the middle of winter!

    • Amber
      January 15, 2015

      Yes! It has a gorgeous, floral-print lining – I meant to take a photo of it, but totally forgot! My problem with shorter jackets with midis is that they have to be really fitted at the waist, or I just feel like a giant bundle of fabric 🙂 I also had my eye on the shorter version, and am thinking about getting the pencil skirt if it’s still on sale when I get paid, so that’s good to know about the fit!

  • Helen Mae
    January 15, 2015

    I have this problem all the time and have yet to source an appropriate coat. The Collectif ones are lovely but are generally a long way outside of my budget, sadly. It looks lovely on you though.

  • Emily Jayne
    January 15, 2015

    This is just gorgeous! I’ve spent all winter looking for a full-skirted coat after my navy one finally gave up on me this year.

  • Louise
    January 15, 2015

    Your coat is beautiful! I love the fur trim details, I have one in a similar colour which is perfect for frosty winter days x

  • char
    January 15, 2015

    I LOVE this coat. I love coats in general and really cannot ever justify buying another. But I have that hatred of dresses which end up being longer than my coat, I always think I look such a mess. This is beautiful and how perfect with the snow.

  • Becky
    January 15, 2015

    THAT COAT!

  • Claire
    January 15, 2015

    definitely a russian vibe to that outfit- I love it!

  • Carys
    January 15, 2015

    I have five Collectif coats. FIVE. I had to stop myself buying the Rachael in the 50% off sale, and I kind of regret not getting it now. That one though? That is a beauty! The tone of the green with your hair is gorgeous. Also, I love how heavy their coats are – makes them feel super luxurious.

    (I recommend the Dietrich for milder times of year. Ultimate 50’s trench).

  • Ma Chérie D
    January 15, 2015

    I asked you about this coat on instagram because I was thinking to buy it. I is so nice and you look so cute in it. My winter problem are boots really I cant find anything i like 🙁

  • Leila
    January 15, 2015

    I’m so glad I wasn’t the only one who took one look at that ensemble and said “My god, Doctor Zhivago much?!” That is a fantastic coat.

  • Porcelina
    January 15, 2015

    Oooooooooo!!!! That has to be the perfect coat for you?! Amazing. You could almost be in Russia in these photos too, how nice of it to snow enough to give this coat the backdrop it deserves x

  • CiCi Marie
    January 15, 2015

    Ohhhh it’s so beautiful! Another triumph for green, as well. You’ve got those vital couple of inches of height on me which means you can pull this off marvelously – I’d look like I have no legs. And the hat that matches so perfectly… it would have been rude not to, frankly. I should probably just set up a direct debit for 60% of my salary to go to Collectif every month, I literally end up with most things from every range. Apart from the coats… but now I want one!

  • Anca
    January 15, 2015

    Love the coat, it’s so girly. Looks great on you

  • TinaD
    January 15, 2015

    Love it. Sort of Anna Karenina on antidepressants. (But do ask your mom where she got That Hat, please?)

  • Selina
    January 15, 2015

    Love the coat and love windswept Rubin too

  • Anna Nuttall
    January 15, 2015

    Gaaaah Amber stop having so many gorgeous clothes – it making me want to steal your wardrobe! Those I expect the coat would look like a dress on me as I’m so short. I love the wind-swept Rubin photo. xx

  • Ellie Jay
    January 15, 2015

    Ooooo…I’ve been looking for a coat like that for ages. I have an addiction to 50s style full skirts and have similar problems finding coats that look nice with them! I’ve been looking for a green one with a hood (near constant rain where I live) but that one is a definite contender. Love Rubin’s windswept expression too!

  • Emma Everleigh
    January 15, 2015

    Great look! I love the colour and the flared skirt on the coat. xxx

  • Katey
    January 15, 2015

    That coat is so perfect – that green & the collar! And it is super hard to find a decent length of coat to cover a midi-skirt, will be looking out for this length. Also love the drama of wind-swept Rubin!

  • Monica - Colour makes people
    January 15, 2015

    You totally wowed me with this look!! Love the russian vibe and makes me think you would be perfect as cinderella in the movie “Three Wishes to Cinderella” if they ever do a remake. 🙂 You look so much alike the actress playing Cinderella, you are both sooo adorably cute! 🙂

  • Lisa
    January 16, 2015

    Gorgeous! Love the hat and coat and your adorable dog. This looks perfect on you!

    Lisa
    http://www.prettylittleshoppers.org

  • Quaintrelle Georgiana
    January 16, 2015

    I love this coat so much! The colour is beautiful and the fur trim. It really suits you.

    I unfortunatelly know this pain, it is impossible to find a nice longer coar with fuller bottom (I like to wear petticoats) that looks good and is for reasonable price. I actually decided I must try to sew one myself to solve this problém. I hope it will turn out well.

  • Filipa
    January 18, 2015

    I am in love with your hair color. It’s gorgeous

  • Nisrine
    February 11, 2015

    Hello,

    Sorry about the bad English, but since collectif’s facebook page shared your photo, I want that coat, it looks gorgeous on you (and I’m a redhead too)

    However, I have some trouble chosing a size ? Does it run small please ?

    I’ll take it with the suit.

    Kind regards from Paris

  • Rose
    September 22, 2016

    I loved this coat.. LOVED so wore it everywhere for 2 years during winter. Finally had to give it away as was all bobbly and frayed. Such bad quality although I did wear it constantly. I am so sad. I wish Collectif would make it again. I miss it! Can’t find it anywhere nowadays.

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