occupy duffle coat

what I wear — Danielle on November 11, 2011 at 12:04 pm

Yesterday I went to meet a friend at Starbucks by Saint Paul’s Cathedral. Like a lot of people I’ve been following the Occupy story for a while with interest. Like a fashion blogger, I thought it would also make a decent backdrop for that most conventional of posts, the outfit post.

Me being me, I showed up 45 minutes early and found a small group of women working on a banner with appliqued poppies for Rememberance Day. I liked how it was apolitical (the women brushed off tacky suggestions to include references to the movement) and how it was something I could do (I miss sewing) so I got on my knees and stitched and pinned as much as I could in the time I had. It felt good to do something meditative that reflects how everyone has a life that matters, no matter what they believe. Discussing the problems of the world is often discouraging – making something with your hands is an antidote – a satisfying, positive act.

My own feelings about Occupy are somewhat ambivalent – there are things about it I like and things about it I find baffling. As something of an individualist and an entrepreneur, I find governance by consensus a suffocating concept. I’m wary of ideologies in general, and ideologies fill the airwaves at Saint Paul’s. I don’t believe that you can change people’s minds by shouting at them, no matter how loud your megaphone is.

Where I find hope in Occupy is that it is a seed of modern counter-culture. Key word culture. If you want to move people, persuade them, you can do it most effectively through emotion. Beauty is a power disruptor. So is music and narrative. I think that if the Occupy movement is able to create compelling cultural artifacts, it stands a greater chance of creating real change.

This is a fashion blog though, so let’s get to the stuff that really matters, eh? This outfit is meant to feature a recent purchase, the duffle coat. I wanted to buy a wool coat that would bridge between trench coats and parkas, and the duffle was the ideal. Not only is it British-ish, it has several qualities that fit perfectly into my style paradigm. Plaid lining, tapered masculine cut, and of course, genuine horn toggles. I was going to buy the Gallagher-approved Gloverall, but ended up going with the Montgomery at half the price, which is also made in England, and has the added bonus of a zipper. This coat keeps me very warm and happy.

I’m wearing it with a knit beanie from H&M, printed scarf by Virginia Johnson, leather satchel by Roots, plaid kilt from Rokit Vintage, and of course cherry red Made-in-England Dr. Martens.

Thanks to Tom Pickering for taking the photos.

 

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    5 Comments »

    1. There is something so satisfying about creating with one’s hands, no?

      I had a similar Gloverall passed down from my mother during my elementary school days. Being the little femme I was, I remember HATING its big boxy shape with all the passion and indignity a ten-year-old can feel.

      Comment by Nadia Lewis — November 11 2011 @ 2:30 pm
    2. I couldn’t agree with you more about the ‘culture’ of something being what will create lasting change. Your sentence, “Beauty is a power disruptor” is so true. What an elegant and eloquent way of putting it. I have been following the occupy movement and your assessment is one that I deeply resonate with.

      Comment by Jade Owen — November 12 2011 @ 10:53 pm
    3. Revisiting this, what an amazing cultural artifact it’s location is. Saint Paul’s is such an excellent stage.

      Comment by Danielle — December 18 2011 @ 5:24 pm
    4. [...] Occupying myself – documented my occupation outfit. London life [...]

      Pingback by final fashion » twenty eleven redemption — December 28 2011 @ 6:22 pm
    5. […] London, I was finally released from the tyranny of truly cold weather. I bought a trim little Made in England wool duffle coat and it was perfectly serviceable for even the coldest bits of British winter. I got to wear […]

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