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Green Thimble Recycling | Revamping the A-line coat

Seriously, you can’t make this up, a winter in New York when cherry blossoms bloom in March and crocuses and Daffodils were fully wilted by the end of February. Last year was one of  the coldest and snowiest, to date; this year was the second warmest and driest, to date. If the cardinal rule applies, next year should be a cold one throughout the country.

So, now that the Fall-Winter 2012-2013 collections have come and gone, now that we know the main trends the fashion cognescenti are going to push with a vengeance, why not look at that older coat and head down to the furrier for that revamping you’ve  had in mind for some time now?

"La primavera" Sandro Botticelli (c.1445-1510)

"La primavera" Sandro Botticelli (c.1445-1510)

Yes. your old coat can be remodeled to give you a new look that is absolutely on trend for the coming season.  So let’s get started!  By the look of it, the classic A-line coat –let’s say the quintessential floor-length 1980’s mink coat– is the easiest one to rework. “Why?” You may ask? Its lines are so clean that it’s the closest thing to a clean slate to cut into. Yes, fur is a wooly-leather and if well taken care of, it can be reconditioned and given a substantial revamping to last a long time.

Cristobal Balenciaga's assymetric A-line bridal gown

Cristobal Balenciaga's assymetric A-line bridal gown

Christian Dior - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

Christian Dior - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

St. John - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

St. John - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

Philosophy di Alberta Ferretti - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

Philosophy di Alberta Ferretti - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

The two main zones that can be most easily and effectively altered in reimaging a coat are the collar and length.

Alberta Ferretti - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

Alberta Ferretti - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

Jean Paul Gaultier - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

Jean Paul Gaultier - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

Carmen Marc Valvo - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

Carmen Marc Valvo - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

Carven - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

Carven - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

Collarless coats are nothing new and can look extremely elegant. Ask your furrier if a trim of leather should be applied to clean and update the line. If you’re the cozy type, why not add a large collar? It’s a small investment than can literally transform a coat.

Christian Cota - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

Christian Cota - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

The Row - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

The Row - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

Sonia Rykiel - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

Sonia Rykiel - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

Fendi - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

Fendi - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

Then, comes the length. Just like a haircut, cutting and raising the proportions can lighten up the silhouette and update it, making it youthful or sporty or chic. Your furrier will be able to help guide you to the right length (PS: make sure to go there with two shoes’ heights with you –flats and high-heels– to see what works best!).

Gucci - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

Gucci - Fall 2012-Winter 2013

As witnessed with these past few collections (really over the past 2 or 3 years), the vest is becoming a democratic garment, presented in various lengths and proportions. So, why not remove your fur coat’s sleeves altogether and come-up with an entirely new garment (you can then have the sleeves put-on another garment). Of course, make sure to take your sartorial affinities in mind before beginning to cut up your old coat.  As seen during the past fashion cycle, some vests are short others are long.

NEXT: Green Thimble Recycling | Revamping the Chubby

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