Thursday, 12 April 2012

Ode to Chanel

There's a jacket shape which I favour, which I have become known for, and that's the round-necked, short jacket, which has long been favoured by Chanel. 

{original Chanel jacket from 1954 Haute Couture collection}
{black & white jacket in Coco Before Chanel film}

{on display at a Chanel jackets exhibition}

But Chanel's a little out of my league right now, and I've since discovered that the little round-necked jacket style which I love can be sought out from many different sources.

So it all first started with a little pink jacket, purchased almost eight years ago now, from Zara, when I was on holiday in Madrid.

{the original imitation by Zara, circa 2004}
This jacket is a head-turner. I've lost count of the number of compliments I've received for it, or times friends have borrowed it. It even makes friends, all of it's own accord - when I left a job at the BBC, there was a very fierce Argentinian lady, who never spoke to anyone on a fixed-contract, because she knew we'd be gone almost as soon as we arrived. She barely registered my existence, and I don't think she even knew my name, but she wrote in my leaving card, "I will miss your fabulous pink jacket". Of all the other 6-monthers I joined with, my jacket was the only one she put pen to card for.

Soon a pattern emerged for my jacket-buying trend, and I realise that the charity shops are rich hunting ground for my obsession. Here are some of my finds:

{grey tweed by Windsmoor, found in charity shop}

{burgundy tartan/tweed by Viyella, found in charity shop}
{black with front pockets, found in charity shop}

{green woven check by Basler, found in charity shop}

{blue wool houndstooth by Eastex, from charity shop}

{a bevy of beauties...}

The reason I love this type of jacket? It's easier to wear than one with lapels - more relaxed, more comfortable to wear. I don't work in an industry where suited and booted is the required look, but I do like to look fairly smart, and this jacket is a style which doesn't need a matching skirt or trouser to go with it - it's a real mix and match look. And also any jean will do - there's not a pair of jeans out there which doesn't look great with this jacket.

So whilst I'll keep dreaming of Chanel, and keep scouring the charity shops, there are also some corkers on the high street:

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