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The Hunt: Winter Coats That Work As Hard as You Do

Sure, we all know what basics professional women are supposed to have in their closets, but if you’re buying one for the first time or replacing one you’ve worn into the ground, it can be a pain to find exactly the right incarnation in stores. In “The Hunt,” we search the stores for a basic item that every woman should have.

We’ve talked before about how to buy a great winter coat — but we haven’t done a roundup in a while! Which winter coats have been your favorite this year, ladies? Do you vary your coat choices based on your outfit (e.g., wearing a longer coat with a skirt/dress)?  Do you buy a new coat each season, or once every few years?  How many coats do you keep in rotation at one time — and what do you do with the older ones?

For my own answers, I still love my dark green Cinzia Rocca coat that I got a few years ago — but I also wear my Primaloft coats from Lands’ End if I’m running around with the kids (I have a shorter one as well as a longer one), as well as a few wool coats I inherited from my grandmother. I definitely vary my coat based on my outfit — I would never wear a shorter, hip-length coat with a skirt or dress. Just due to closet space limitations, I’ve kept my coat collection pretty small!

Before we get to the roundup for today, here are a few general categories to consider for winter coats for work:

Pictured below: the Hall of Famers readers swear by: one / two / three / four

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How to Do Business Casual in Cold Weather

How to Do Business Casual in Cold Weather | CorporetteWhat are the best strategies for staying warm during a wintry commute while still looking professional when you get to work? How can you look stylish and professional in the winter? Reader M has a question about how to do business casual in cold weather:

I’m graduating this year and moving somewhere cold, and I have no clue how to dress business/business casual in the winter. (I have tons of dresses and cardigans and skirt suits from my summers, but rarely any winter clothes.) Specially, I’m wondering — what kind of coat should I buy? What kind of shoes/boots should I wear under work pants? What do I wear to walk to work in the snow/rain? I know this is pretty basic question, but I’d love a post on this topic!

Great questions, M — business casual in cold weather can be tricky! Some thoughts for you:

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How to Buy a Great Winter Coat

great-winter-coats-how-to-buy-and-choose-one2017 Update: We still stand by the advice below, but you may also want to check out our latest roundup of winter coats that work as hard as you do!

How can you find a great winter coat, or know when it’s time to invest in great winter coats in general?  Reader M asked us to “share some guidance and advice…”

I’m curious to hear what the readers say here, because despite a lot of poking around online, I haven’t found a lot of other articles talking about this.  Here’s what I know:

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Splurge Monday’s TPS Report: Camel Wool-Cashmere Standing Collar Coat

Our daily TPS reports suggest one piece of work-appropriate attire in a range of prices.

Cinzia Rocca camel wool-cashmere standing collar coatWe’ll do a fuller roundup of the best winter coats sometime soon, but for today — man, this is a gorgeous coat. It’s a wool/cashmere blend (supposedly the best) and we love the thick seams with top stitching, as well as the standing collar. It’s on sale, too (although still a splurge) — was $1,165, now $699 at Bluefly (available in both camel and black).  Cinzia Rocca camel wool-cashmere standing collar coat


Seen a great piece you’d like to recommend? Please e-mail [email protected] with “TPS” in the subject line.

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