Saturday, January 21, 2012

Come Register On The Coat Brag Book

I've been struggling with my coats this winter.  I had to throw out two coats that I loved that belonged to my father, because I wore them until they fell apart.  I think he got both of them in Alaska.  Ever since I've been trying to find the perfect coat. 

I tried wearing one of my mother's complimentary cruise ship coats, but it was gathered at the waist with elastic, and it kept pulling my shirts up so that my midriff was bare when it was below freezing outside.  I gave up on that coat and am planning on donating it to charity.  Then I bought a loose fitting coat at JC Penney that didn't have any gathering at the waist and had arms that were wide enough that I could pull the sleeves on over bulky sweaters. 

The coat worked out for a short while until I discovered that everything I put in the pockets eventually fell out, because the openings are on the side instead of at an angle or on the top.  Missing car keys?  Dig around in the manure on the stall floors and I'll eventually find them, since I always wear that coat when I'm mucking stalls.  The other problem with it is that every time I zip it up, the zipper catches on the material flaps in front of and behind the zipper.  Then I have to struggle to get the material out, so that I can either finish zipping it up or take the coat off.

So, I'm in the market for a coat that I can just wear and keep warm in without any worries or hassles.  It needs to be loose.  It needs to be warm.  It needs to be intelligently designed so that I can get my arms through the sleeves when I wear bulky sweaters, can zip it up and down without the zipper getting caught, can put things in the pockets and feel safe knowing they won't fall out, and can cover my midriff and butt, because they need to stay warm too.

I need some recommendations... especially from those readers in Alaska, Canada, and the far northern states of the U.S.  I'm asking you to go to your closets and coat racks, pull out your warmest, most comfortable, most hassle-free coat, look at the label and tell me the brand and style.  I'm calling the comments section of this post "The Coat Brag Book".  fernvalley01 already mentioned her Carhartt coat, so I've been checking out their website.  I'd like to get a few ideas before making a purchase. 

I've already looked in our secondhand shops, and the selection sucks.  Plus the stores smell like mildew and there's usually some drunk who smells like he crapped in his pants sitting on a stool behind the counter sleeping when I need to pay for my purchase.  Okay, so that happened once, but the experience didn't encourage me to return.  Hopefully your favorite coats will be available through websites since I'm not in the position to fly north for the sole purpose of buying a coat.  I'll do the searching if you give me some names.  I'm desperate.  Thanks.

26 comments:

fernvalley01 said...

my vote still is for Carhartt, like I said , bought mine in an XL bomber style , the bombers are softer somehow , and in an XL it covers my bum, and I can wear a heavy sweater and a vest if I need to, though it is the very rare day (at least -40 or worse) that I need a vest too .Most days I am good with a sweatshirt , and headband , the coat and my lined pants or lined jeans (those too are an amazing item. never have a cold tushie again ! If you cannot get that type , the old style down filled jackets are still very warm as long as you live in a dry climate

fernvalley01 said...

Lee, or levis used to make a good one too, blanket lined denim.No idea if they still sell those

fernvalley01 said...

similar to This one Again doesnt' look particularly warm but the blanket lining makes a huge difference

Dreaming said...

Oh, I wish I could help you, but my solution is layering. My barn jacket is a fleece-lined jacket I got from Toshiba, many years ago. It was a cheapy. It was a give-away. I add additional fleece layers if it is really cold, or just a flannel shirt, if it isn't' that cold.

Please share the results. I would like to find great solutions of really cold weather!

Reddunappy said...

I love my Carhartt coat!! Funny I dont have one I wear to the barn.
I wear one of those fleece lined ones with the slick shell, the kind that are embroidered on by companies. Zipper pockets!!!
Carhartt has a wonderful website!! and lots of long coats! They have yummy fleece lining too!!! usually the sleeves have slick lining so that you can put them on over sweatshirts of some such!!! They wash great too! I will have one for my next barn coat!! LOL I sometimes find some of them really bulky. Try some on if you can.
he he he he a Carhartt commercial, hmmmm. ( I did used to sell them)

Cheryl Ann said...

I actually DID get my favorite coat at a thrift store a few years ago. I'll have to run out to the car to see what brand it is. It's an extra large one, so there's plenty of room. It's a little longer than most coats and it has large pockets and is denim. It's dark right now, so I'll do it in an hour or so. I LOVE it!

Cheryl Ann said...

Okay...I went out to the car in the dark. It's a Wolverine, fleece lined, cover-my-butt jacket. LOVE IT! I take it with me on every trip because I know it will keep me warm.

Jeni said...

Carhartt gets my vote too. I also have a Columbia parka that I LOVE but Columbia's are expensive.

strivingforsavvy said...

I agree, I love my two Carhartts. I have a canvas one and also a waterproof one since I live in Oregon. They last and last and keep me warm and or dry.

Anonymous said...

Duluth Trading Company has great, warm, dry, sensibly-designed outerwear.

One of my faves for layering, however, is a sherpa-lined zippered hoodie from WalMart's Faded Glory line. It's quite warm and I frequently find myself shedding my coat in the barn and being just fine in the hoodie. And that's in Minnesota!

anita said...

I agree with Carhartt. Everyone around here wears them. I used to work at a workwear store and that wss the top choice for farm, ranch and outdoor construction work. Helley Hanson also popular for the cold but not really for barn type work.

aurora said...

Have you tried Outback?

http://www.outbacktrading.com/

I multi-layer when it's cold, and love my Outback barn coat in all seasons but summer (looks like a Carhart). I also have a super warm (almost too much) Outback down coat I wear for good, that's equestrian cut (longer in the back).

Outback can be pricy, but I look for deals and found them at our local horse fair. Good luck with your search!

Ms Martyr said...

Get thyself to a Costco for a Field & Stream Hoodie Flannel/Quilted Jacket. They are in the men's clothing section. More than warm enough for any above zero weather. Below zero I add a down vest.

Crystal said...

I too agree with the Carharts, or the none name brand ones (I have a Tough Duck from UFA and a Lakin and Mckey from Big R) the best part is I have one in beige for chorse and a pretty turquoise one that is good enough to go to town in. I prefer the longer non bomber style and just regular size and it still fits lots of layers underneath. And they last forever!

Linda said...

Yep, I'm with Carhartt. I was just getting ready to write a review of a few things...my new Carhartt coat was one of them. It's rain-proof, black, and has hand-warmers that slide over your hand. It's meant to be layered over other things, which I like, too. You know how you can be cold, then hot, then cold? I can never wear one coat that handles everything....but layering helps. It's somewhat rip-proof, too. But the black gets dirty easy. Still, I like black.

ellie k said...

try the army surplus store, they usually have some really weather tight jackets.

sue said...

I'm in Maine... and I have to add to the Carhartt vote... had my jacket for five years now and wear it to the barn everyday in the cold weather... it has stood up very well, it's warm and not "too heavy" to work in... I think you would be very happy with one....

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

I don't like the stiff feeling of Carrhart, though I know most folks swear by them. My coat of choice I have been using every winter, every time I head outside to do barn chores in the freezing wind, snow, and hail for the past 17 years.

My coat was my uniform coat when I worked for Mesa Airlines. It was what we were assigned to buy to work outside on the ramp, loading planes, refueling planes and de-icing planes all while getting blasted by 50-60 mph wind gusts, getting snowed on and being blasted by jet engines. I could do all those tasks and I was always warm and comfortable, even in -10 degrees temps outside.

And it serves me just as well here on our little ranch, too. My hubby even wears my coat, too.
It covers my bum, and has not elastic waist. The sleeves are roomy, the pockets are square and close with velcro...and are deep enough to hold over 20 eggs at one time without breaking....and I could probably add a few more when the rest of my hens start laying.

There are upper pockets that I also keep a small leatherman-like tool and some carrots, or horse cookies, too.

And best of all, it's entirely lined with thinsulate and the outer part is water resistant, but also soft and flexible and very comfie. It has a zipper and then buttons over it, and a detachable hood that I always use when we have our wind gusts like we had today...I tie the hood shut under my chin to keep my hair from getting all tangled up and keep my neck warm, too.

My coat was made by Cal Craft. I have no idea if they still make any coats, but if they did I would buy another one or two. But saying that, this coat has already lasted 17+ years and is still in great shape and I'll probably get another 5-10 more years...or more of use from it.

~Lisa

appydoesdressage said...

I am going to agree with everyone else and say Carhartt. I have one with the Arctic lining and have had it since 02. I have given it a serious beating every year and it gets washed once a year and I probably haven't even used half of it's life. With a sweatshirt, it is nice and warm and durable. It does get softer and easier to move in after a wash or two.
I would also recommend Duluth but also L.L. Bean. Both have a no question asked return guarantee. Duluth has pants that are guaranteed for life. Good luck!

goodtimetoreview said...

Carhartt is the way to go. I live in the city that was voted most extreme weather in America last year so I know how to keep warm! I have a few in different colors, as well as the winter overalls. Can’t beat them for warmth, comfort and durability! I don’t think I’ve ever been cold when I’ve worn mine, even when it’s -40. I am trying to find the style online that I have so I can pass the info on to you. It doesn’t have a elastic waistband but it is longer in the back so it covers your butt more. The sales girl told me she had the same one and it’s awesome for riding because your back doesn’t get exposed.

goodtimetoreview said...

I couldn't seem to find the exact style that I have.I think mine were both technically men's jackets but I think that the Women's Sandstone Sierra Jacket/Sherpa-Lined is the closest to what my two favorites are.
And for the fall/spring when it's still cold, but not cold enough for my heavy Carhartts I have the Carhartt Women’s Waterproof Breathable Jacket. It's pretty much amazing since it's water proof, windproof, and it's perfect for layering. I usually wear my North Face Fleece under and stay warm and dry. PLUS it's got the sleeves that go down around your hands with holes for your thumbs so you don't have to worry about your wrists ever getting cold.

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

Oh yeah, I forgot to add my everyday winter coat that doesn't get worn in the barn. It's an LL Bean coat that comes down to my thighs. It's a pretty cobalt blue color and is so extremely warm that I sometimes can get too warm. I think it's rated for temps from 30 to -20 below. It's cozy!
I got it for just $5.00 at my local horse rescue's thrift store. It was a real bargain, that's for sure!

~Lisa

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

Well I tried to search online for a place to buy a Cal Craft coat. Seems that the only ones you can buy are Vintage! lol!
I wonder if they closed or sold the business.
That's unfortunate, because they made some of the best, most reliable, warmest and most comfortable coats around.

I did find one Cal Craft made coat that caught my eye because of the unique western styling, but it's on eBay, listed also as Vintage from the 1960's (See? These coats last a good looong time).

Here's the link.....The price is great! I'm tempted to bid on it myself. lol!

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-Cal-Craft-Western-motif-jacket-sherling-California-Made-USA-/110778180659

~Lisa

Linda said...

Goodtimetoreview has the same Carhartt coat I do. And I agree with Lisa, the LLBean barn coats are nice, too. I have a couple of them. They hold up forever and you can get them lined.

Cut-N-Jump said...

Another vote for Carhart but if you go to the stores like REI that handle outdoor gear for hiking, rock climbing, etc. they usually have a good selection of North Face, Columbia, Dutch Harbor and other gear. Dutch Harbor gets it's name from Dutch Harbor, Alaska and it it built to be rugged and warm without the added bulk.

gowestferalwoman said...

inexpensive yet horsecare related -

www.outbackoutlet.com

:)