Oklahoma's winter weather usually only calls for heavy coats and head-to-toe bundling a few days a season. Lucky us.
But that doesn't mean women who yearn for stylish outerwear are left out in the cold. Winter jackets and coats are lightweight and easy to wear with interesting details that include fur or faux fur trim, high collars, waist emphasis and eye-popping buttons.
“Coats are not so bulky anymore,” said Alex Bratton, buyer for On a Whim stores in Oklahoma City and Tulsa. “You can see a body beneath the coat. You don't just see a coat.”
Nothing ruins a great outfit faster than covering it up with a heavy coat. “You don't see the girl underneath,” she said.
Lightweight jackets and coats are a good fit for Oklahoma's weather. “They add light protection from the elements, and some are even water-resistant, so they're a great go-to fall and winter item,” said Melissa Merriman, spokeswoman for Dillard's.
And there's no sacrificing fashion.
Clothing trends have echoed a return to feminine dressing for the past few seasons, and that theme carries over to outerwear.
“Women have always embraced their femininity, and now designers are actually catching up with a woman and a woman's body,” Merriman said.
Many of the coat styles hint at the mid-1940s and 1960s with modern twists coming from details and color. Belts define the waist, and seams outline curves. Jewel tones and hot hues make drab winter days a little easier to endure.
Lands' End says color is its top trend, with punched-up reds, greens and yellows. The new Narciso Rodriguez collection for Kohl's includes cocoon coats in peony and cobalt.
And a little fur? Well, it's just fun.
“I definitely think anything embellished with fur is still a big trend, whether it's faux or real,” Bratton said.
Just as appealing are sheared faux fur crop jackets that give the look and feel of sable and other luxurious furs. It's more controlled, elegant and chic-looking than many wild and woolly faux furs.
Those styles also hang with leather motorcycle jackets, peacoats, trench coats, tweed crop jackets and sweater and blanket coats, but most have a little edge or spark that makes you want to reach out and try them on.
And surprise. Many of these coats are so lightweight that you won't be tearing them off as soon as you get in a building or in the car. Thanks to improved fabrics and technology, you stay warm and comfortable without the weight.
And let's not forget the two-for-one advantage of many of this year's coats.
“All styles, whether tweed or faux fur, translate very well from day to evening, so you don't have just a daytime or cocktail coat,” Bratton said. “It offers more of a dressed-up feeling. It's not just your basic wool coat.”