HOW TO: Incorporate some color into your winter coat

Every day, the air seems to get colder and colder and it’s just a matter of time until it starts to snow and winter is here for good. The cold and snow means that our outfits are hardly ever seen, making winter coats the most important article of clothing in our closet this time of year. Traditionally, winter coats have been bulky and well … unattractive, marked by dark colors and lots of material (think Randy fromA Christmas Story“). We’ve all had our mothers stuff us into a puffy winter coat at some point in our lives.

Luckily for us, the fashions are changing. Stores like Forever 21, Rue 21 and JC Penney are selling new, slimmer winter coats in a variety of colors. Coats are now available in anything from a bright red to a cheery yellow to a vibrant purple, as well as a variety of patterns. Cheetah prints have been popular in seasons past, as well as plaids.

But what do students on campus think?

“I personally go for darker colors,” Mackenzie Schondelmayer said. The freshman, a Broadcast and Cinematic Arts major from Hamilton, wears a dark black peacoat to and from class. “Bright colors just look weird during the winter.”

Her coat, purchased from JC Penney, does have a nice contrast with the whiteness of snow.

“Plus it matches with everything,” Schondelmayer said. “I never have to worry about what color hat and gloves I have on, or try to coordinate boots.”

She raises a good question: Are bright winter coats too garish when it comes to matching accessories, such as hats and gloves? Is it better to go with a more neutral color, such as a traditional blue or black?

“It depends,” said Alison Schubert, a junior from Caledonia who is sporting a bright yellow winter coat. “For me personally, I mostly go for neutral accessories, especially black and white. Instead of wearing a black coat with yellow gloves, I have a yellow coat that I wear with black gloves.”

Does she feel limited in her choices? After all, a black coat gives you more matching options than a yellow coat.

“Not really,” Schubert said. “It all comes down to your personal style. I love my yellow coat and the statement it makes, so I’m OK with only having a few choices for my scarf and gloves.”

She has a good point. While she might only be able to pull off black or white gloves with her coats, the pattern options involving black and white are limitless.

“Except,” she laughs, “I usually wear these mittens that don’t really match but are super warm.”

Schubert loves her bright yellow piece she found at Old Navy.

“People always tell me when they have seen me on campus. They say that they saw my yellow coat. I feel like I bring my own sunshine, since it is so dreary out during the winter.”