As the weather turned cooler last autumn, my thoughts turned to outerwear. I usually wear my beloved Ben De Lisi raincoat when I feel I need a light extra layer, and of course I have my Collectif Ashley coats for days when it is very chilly. However, I didn’t have anything for those ‘in between’ days when a light mac is not enough but the weather is not cold enough for a heavy duty winter coat.
Thank goodness for Collectif – they released their gorgeous Dietrich swing trench coat in a thicker fabric for exactly this sort of weather.
Image courtesy of Collectif
The Collectif Dietrich Check Swing Trench (£110.00, UK sizes 6-22) comes in this lovely tartan print in a thicker fabric than their regular swing coats.
I first of all bought this coat in a size 16 from the Collectif website as I had found this size to be the best fit when I’d tried the thinner fabric coat on in store a while ago. However, this design came up a little smaller so I returned it to exchange for a size 18.
The Collectif Dietrich Check Swing Trench is made from 97% cotton and 3% spandex, and it has a 100% polyester lining. The slight stretch in the outer fabric allows for a good fit and ease of movement. It feels heavy and fairly thick; and certainly thicker than the lighter macs, which are much more suitable for when you want to have a raincoat in case of a light shower. This one is more substantial and the fabric has been more closely woven to provide additional warmth. (N.B. I have worn the coat countless times now and the fabric has generally worn quite well, although I have noticed some slight pilling/bobbling in high friction areas such as on the waist and under the arms. This is not at all noticeable when wearing the coat but it is apparent when running a hand over the fabric.)
The coat is double-breasted, which is a coat style I usually avoid as it tends to make big busts look even bigger, but it actually works really well on the Dietrich. I think the darker fabric helps and I must admit that I like the extra few inches of crossed over fabric to help keep me warm. When fastened, the coat can even be done up to the neck on colder days, or left slightly open in a v-neck style when it’s a bit warmer. The coat definitely needs to be worn done up, though, as double-breasted coats do not look good when worn undone.
I really like the on-trend tartan print of this coat. It’s pretty dark but the muted blues, greens and blacks work well together to give a coat that is subtly eye-catching and highly stylish.
The fit on the bust of the Dietrich is quite good but if you are particularly busty like me you might want to go up a size. I found the 16 to be fine for a try on but I think if I’d worn the coat for a longer time I would have soon found the bust too restrictive in terms of movement as it would have felt too tight across the bust, shoulders and arms. As this coat is not cheap I wanted to be sure I got it right as this is definitely an investment piece.
I found the Dietrich to be quite snug in the arms, which is the main reason I sized up to the 18. My advice would be to go up a size to allow room for wearing a cardigan or long-sleeved top or dress underneath. The larger size also meant that the sleeves are a little longer, which was good news for me as I like long sleeves, particularly on coats.
The fit across the back of the coat is roomy because of the design. I find I get a baggy effect in the upper back area and it hangs over the waist but I don’t think this looks really bad or out of place as trench coats are often cut this way.
Lengthwise I absolutely love this coat. It’s been cut to comfortably cover the Collectif swing dresses, which are slightly longer than those from Pinup Girl Clothing, for example. This means that the coat comes to mid-calf on me and I am very happy with this. The extra length gives extra warmth and stops those cold draughts coming to get me!
The waist on the size 18 (and, indeed, the 16) is big for me, which is what I expected. Thankfully the tie waist belt pulls the waist in beautifully and helps to define my figure. The flowing skirt of the coat is gorgeous and helps to accentuate my natural hourglass shape, as well as that provided by the coat.
Overall, I am delighted with my Dietrich Check Swing Trench and since buying it back in November I have worn it almost every day. I feel so sophisticated and stylish in it, not to mention warm and dry!
The Collectif Dietrich Check Swing Trench is now on sale on the wesbite at just £55.00 but it is only currently available in UK sizes 6 and 8. If you need a different size, you may well be able to find other vintage online shops selling it so do have a good look on Google.