Pea Coat advice?
December 5, 2006 1:50 PM   Subscribe

I love the look of the classic Pea Coat; but I have always heard that plus size women should not wear double breasted jackets or coats and all of the Pea coats that I see have the double column of buttons down the front. Does the accentuate the big-boxy look on plus size gals?
posted by sandra194 to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (15 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I think pea coats are unfortunately not super-flattering for plus-sized girls. Not only because of the boxy shape and structure, but because they tend to hit at the hip -- they don't offer the elongating effect that longer coats do. I'd suggest getting a button-down-the-middle, longer coat rather than a pea coat.
posted by hazelshade at 2:00 PM on December 5, 2006 [1 favorite]

posted by unclejeffy at 2:27 PM on December 5, 2006

OTOH, pea coats are pretty fun and utilitarian, and if it isn't the only winter coat you'll have, why not have one if you want one? They are perfect for snowball fights and skating, and other situations where a long coat isn't wanted. Everybody looks a little boxy in winter.
posted by paulsc at 2:36 PM on December 5, 2006

I am a plus-size woman, and I've been wearing a plain black peacoat for a few years now. Yes a peacoat is unflattering, and yes it will make you look like a big box.

In fact, it may even make you look like a man from behind. I've been called "sir" by inattentive waiters, store clerks, etc. more times than I can count. Cool if that's what you want (and I did get a kick out of it at first), but doesn't sound like what you're looking for.

I actually just replaced my peacoat with a more tailored coat that I found for cheap at Target. It's got a definite waist to it, unlike the peacoat, and I think it's much more flattering on me.
posted by ourobouros at 2:52 PM on December 5, 2006

Of course, I did wear and enjoy the peacoat for a few years, so ... y'know, it's not all bad. I think I'm just a little fed up with it at the moment.

You should probably try a few different styles on and see what you like best.
posted by ourobouros at 2:57 PM on December 5, 2006

Yeah, I've got a peacoat, and while I will wear it occasionally, I hate the way it makes me look like a fat piece of crap.

I just bought a new camel-colored wool car coat from good ol' BCF and the transformative power of a coat that suits you is impossible to overstate.

You should go and try on a few coats - you will leave hating the peacoat and owning something you might not have figured on getting.
posted by mckenney at 3:17 PM on December 5, 2006

It's not the pea coat so much that is the issue. Like everything else you wear, it is the cut of the coat. You might have to end up paying more to get a tailored fit- one that is cut in at the sides as close to the top of the rib cage, maybe even with darts under the breast, will be the most flattering shape. Pea coats can actually serve to create the illusion of a waist where there might not otherwise be one. And it would help if it hit a little lower than at the top of the hip. It's best if it hits around the middle of the hip, unless your hips are a whole lot wider than the rest of you. But I mean a whole lot wider.
Most plus-size women can pull off anything if the cut is right. I'm a cut-snob, but if you need some help, watch TLC's What Not To Wear religiously, because Stacy London and Clinton Kelly know their shit and they are usually styling plusser-sized women.
posted by greta simone at 3:57 PM on December 5, 2006

Wow, I'm shocked by all the hate. I'm fat and I'm in love with my peacoat. It really defines my waist -- as long as I button the lower two (of three) buttons. If I don't, then it's flappy and horrible. And it hits around mid-thigh, so it's not like it cuts off right at the hip or anything.

It's by Anne Klein, and looks similar to this one, but black. I've had it for a good couple of years, and I just love it.
posted by booksandlibretti at 4:09 PM on December 5, 2006

I was looking for a pea coat a few years ago but all the traditional ones looked wrong on me. But I found that there are a lot of other nice wool coats with lapels, similar to though not strictly the same as a pea coat. Maybe one of these would deliver some of what you're looking for?

-here's one example that's longer than the traditional pea coat and with just one row of buttons
-here's another

I agree with others that it would be good to hit a department store with a trusted friend and try on a bunch of different styles.
posted by LobsterMitten at 4:27 PM on December 5, 2006

i've been wearing a peacoat for years. i've never noticed any sort of boxy look -- in fact, i really like the way i look in it. last year, i bought a peacoat from the old navy plus-size section. it's a little longer than a normal one, but not by much (mid-thigh) and it has a pretty well-defined waist as long as i button all the buttons.
posted by kerning at 4:31 PM on December 5, 2006

I'm sure you can still do the double-breasted look if you find a coat that's at least mid-thigh length and a little more a-lined -- at that length it's still casual enough to not look completely out of place with jeans and sneakers.
posted by thisjax at 4:38 PM on December 5, 2006

I've got a pea coat now (after endless trekking about with shopping-inclined friends to find coats for me). Yeah, the shape is a little bit more boxy than I would perhaps like, but this coat is cut to fit close along most of my torso and looks pretty alright. My silhouette is a box, but not an enormous box.

On the other hand, most of the waist-having coats I tried were spectacularly unflattering because nipping in at the waist implied flaring below the waist and gave me the overall appeal of a gatorade bottle.

I'm still hopeful that a really awesome coat is out there waiting for me, but for now, I dig my pea coat, and I think you might be able to find one that likes you too.
posted by janell at 9:32 PM on December 5, 2006

I wouldn't. You wear your coat all winter; get something that makes you look fabulous, not something that might be kinda okay. And if you can wait till after Christmas, coats are some of the deepest-discounted items at department store post-holiday sales, which means you can get something a step up from your usual budget, which means better cut and usually better material.

(Also, b&l, I remember your picture. You don't really have waist-definition issues. I am thinner but have no waist, and trust me, pea coat = boxy coat of doom.)
posted by dame at 6:03 AM on December 6, 2006

Since pea coats have a boxy shape anyway, it will just accentuate your boxy shape. Also, if you have any sort of boobs at all, steer clear of the pea coats! If you want something more flattering, try a knee-length belted coat, or least a longish coat with a single row of buttons and a nice lapel so there is an open V near your neck.
posted by suchatreat at 11:52 AM on December 6, 2006

Well, I had one that I loved, but once when I was holding an umbrella someone told me I looked like Paddington Bear.
posted by exceptinsects at 6:36 PM on December 6, 2006

« Older Face gets splotchy red after being exposed to cold...   |   I want X1 for OS X Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.