You need to know what you want before you start the commission and be able to communicate it, otherwise you're taking a big chance.
New overcoat commission - What colour? - Page 4
Thanks for all the advice everyone. I think I'm going to go with Despos suggestions and do the coat in Navy without the patch pockets. I'm going to give Spiro a call and see what my options are through him in terms of fabric, construction and cost. I had considered Don Lee at Trend before, but they seem to be out of my price range. I might also check out OTR at Harry's, though, at least from previous experience, I'm not confident I'll find something double breasted. Unless anyone knows any specific labels I might have success with?
For those of you who have had experience with Spiro: I've got lots of pictures of the coat. If I brought them all in and stressed that I wanted this exact coat (minus patch pockets) in a modern/slim fit and knee length, do you think that would be sufficient? Any other tips for communicating what I want effectively so it doesn't end up too boxy looking (which I've heard Spiro tends to do)?
Still go see Rishi. I use Mytailor often and if you know what you want and are explicit and can navigate measurements and details they (especially Joe) can creat truly wonderful looking and made garments. Also for the prices i suspect you will get higher grades of cloth than many local tailors or merchants in Toronto. They have acess to a huge selection of high end cloths
An overcoat's function is to keep your warm and dry in very bad winter weather. It must therefore offer enough thickness and coverage to protect your whole body against heavy rain and hail, and to keep you warm and well-insulated as well.
This rules out knee-length coats or shorter - they leave your lower legs exposed in heavy weather. Even if you have an umbrella, sometimes the wind will make it unusable, or bring the rain in at a sharp ankle; and umbrellas provide no protection against splashes from passing vehicles. If you are wearing a suit, then your trousers could be soaked through in bad weather if you have a knee-length coat.
Double-breasted overcoats clearly provide more insulation than single-breasted, due to the extra layer over the chest.
As for colour, overcoats are worn in bad winter weather, when there is a lot of mud, dirt, and so on. So, lighter colours will look grimy very quickly. Overcoats are also typically worn over suits, to protect them from damage. Even if you wear suits infrequently, you want an overcoat that can go with a suit and tie, just to be versatile. Darker colours go better with business suits. Finally, dark colours suit winter better than light colours. So, I would say that navy is the best colour, with charcoal grey coming second. Camel looks great but shows dirt quicker, and is more casual and is more of an autumn/spring colour - I think camel is better for a raincoat or trench coat rather than a heavy-duty overcoat.
So, in my opinion, a navy calf-length double-breasted is the best combination for a first overcoat. Any thoughts?
FWIW, Indochino is a very viable option, but this week the Suits in the City guys are doing their fall fitting at the Cosmopolitan Hotel in downtown Toronto and their custom overcoats start $595. Finally, Luxire might be an option as they now have a peacoat which I'm sure they can extend into a overcoat, but I'm going let the dust settle there first. I'll probably end up getting mine from one of the three.
BTW, if you still want to get a cheap peacoat, take a look a Winners. I got mine for $99, yes it's wool/poly blend (so is Luxire), but it fit well and does the job down to around -2/3 degrees, with a sweater underneath.
Not sure where you'll find a heavy tweed option. I've looked through Luxire's book and there's not much options with their standard fabrics and Dugdale they carry. We would probably need to order the full weight Dugdale to make it warm enough here in Canada, but there's no heavy tweed option. I'll check what fabrics the Suits in the City guys have this week and report back. Since you're in Kingston, it's probably too much of trek out here to Toronto.