I used to get asked a lot what my favourite item of clothing is. Ya know, the ONE thing I’d save from a burning building (because this is a magical fire where my arms are incapable of carrying a gigantic heap of silky faves) and that I’ve worn 100 times and have the sweetest memories attached to.
My default answer would always be an Issa wrap dress, because I love them. And I really do love them.
But over Christmas I’ve been thinking about it (there’s a lot of time to reflect when you’re surrounded by Stilton remnants and that famous festive drink, Tequila) and I’ve realised that my true favourite item of clothing is much more humble than the glamorous silky wrap dresses of the runway.
My favourite item of clothing is the practical and perfect puffer jacket.
I adore puffer jackets. I have a dedicated wardrobe *just* for puffer jackets. I enjoy their colours and unisex appeal. I like to touch them in shops. Their simple and efficient warming properties please me and, despite the fact they’re not exactly “trendy”, they truly make me very happy.
If you own a puffer jacket, you don’t need me to tell you how joyous it is to essentially walk around in public encased in a giant duvet. It’s only those who don’t own a puffer who seem to not understand their brilliance.
You will never hear me whinge that it’s too cold/wet to head outside. With the right puffer being outside is always a pleasure, whether you’re stuck on a glacier in a storm or hiding out in an ice cave.
I consider myself very lucky to live in a part of the world where they’re actually quite fashionable. Blame the euro(trash) influence on West London but a puffer is the modern day tweed jacket. It’s not only acceptable to wear them all year round, but encouraged. There’s probably as much Moncler and Canada Goose being worn on the Kings Road RIGHT NOW as there is in Val-d’Isère. It helps if your puffer is slim fitting and worn with skinny jeans, big sunglasses, a perma tan and diamond earrings, but all I’m ever aiming for is to feel like I am still in bed.
I always travel with one. Why cope with a scratchy airline blanket when you can hibernate on long haul flights in the safety of your puffer? Zip up, hood up and you’re away.
If I HAD to choose a favourite puffer (don’t make me, you heartless swine!) it would be this incredibly lightweight Adidas one…
I can shove it into a ball and stuff it in my handbag (WHAT OTHER COATS CAN DO THIS WHILST PROMISING TO ALSO KEEP YOU TOASTY AND WARM?!) and it’s jut an easy, neutral, classic of the genre.
I like my yellow Zara puffer for slightly dressier occasions. I adore the bright mustard colour and the faux fur details make it a bit more “I’m making an effort here” and less “I’m hungover in a ski resort, send help”.
My silver puffer was my first ‘real’ puffer, being that it was made by the gods at Puffa themselves. Yes, strangers might shout “Rickaaaaaaaaay” as I pass by, but coats *should* bring other people joy. I’ve always said that.
Then this dark blue Adidas one is for heavy duty weather, but I treat myself to it in London if I’m feeling particularly tired or going to be outside a lot.
2016 may be the year that I try to find a bright orange one. Or a floor length one (THE DREAM). I may even finally get my mitts on a Moncler, even if it’s third hand from eBay via Oxfam.
They’re just wonderful wonderful coats and I don’t care that my friends tease me about my obsession. You’ll never hear me complain that I’m cold (unless I’ve accidentally gone out without one, in which case prepare for a nauseating onslaught of “I WOULDN’T BE COLD IF I HAD MY PUFFER! SHALL I JUST GO AND BUY A PUFFER? HOW COME YOU’RE NOT WEARING A PUFFER BUT YOU’RE NOT CRYING?”) and I’ll always be up for a walk in the rain.
I have a couple of Burberry trenches which I adore and I still love a faux fur coat or a long-line tailored jacket, but I reserve that special place in my heart for puffers.
Summer feels like a long way away at the moment and I have zero plans for holidays or anything particularly fun or exotic in the diary, but knowing I have a few more months to enjoy my puffers will be enough.
Just be warned though that if you do buy one you’ll find it quite hard not to wear puffers ALL THE TIME. They are magical things, even if they do make you look extra cuddly.
And hey! You can wipe them clean with a sponge. What more could you possibly want?