Fashion notes: Embrace the new military chic
Let’s talk about Coach. The American fashion brand, which has been in existence since 1941, isn’t talked about often by my generation – its notorious logo-stamped bags in neither-here-nor-there shades of beige are better suited to our mothers – or worse, grandmothers.
The brand has made attempts to appeal to a younger, more fashion-savvy market, with its Coach Swagger Bag – a more contemporary silhouette – in a range of uplifting shades. Last month’s spring/summer runway show at New York Fashion Week, however, marked a clear turning point for the brand.
While leather-ware may be the label’s forte, its ready-to-wear offerings are becoming increasingly desirable. The New York muse was given a blend of Victorian influences and classic rock ’n’ roll references, with boxy leather jackets and a plethora of ruffles and bows atop sheer dresses.
Remember last week’s column about how Japanese Harajuku undertones have inspired whimsical street-style trends? Stuart Vevers’ collection for Coach plays right into this fashion fantasy, with an undeniably New Yorker edge. While leather fringing, floral chiffons and spiked platform shoes were all equally pleasing, the jackets that juxtaposed floral and camouflage prints were the highlights of the collection.
Though at first sight, a camouflage jacket may appear menacing, it can make an attractive style statement. Paired with a black slip dress with a pop of lace, it can exude romance; with white jeans, it can suggest charm and charisma; with leather leggings, it can carry cool, composed confidence. Quietly sneaking back into the limelight, military-inspired camouflage prints are big this autumn, and a jacket featuring the olive-green pattern – whether from Coach or high-street stores such as Zara or Stradivarius – is something that you should make space for in your wardrobe.