My search for the perfect jacket consumed a good four weeks of last season. In the end I gave into the -30° temperatures and settled for a Scott Bristol which, though not the jacket of my dreams, was extremely warm, very practical and had the requisite neons to help me fit in with the rest of the seasonaire crowd. Now though, having married myself off to the serviceable and stylish I come across true passion; Ashish for Topshop’s leopard print ski jacket. It is perfection. A joyous mix of grungy irony and tacky glamour. I would be the Chelsea chav of the ski resort; a sort of Bet Lynch in snow. Never mind that, being a Topshop creation, it is unlikely to have the taped seams and powder skirt of my Scott.
In general I am in danger of thinking that the perfect item of clothing will define me. Whenever I come across a beautiful bag, hat, pair of jeans or dress I imagine it becoming my signature look; the girl in the yellow sweater. In my mind’s eye I see myself swinging into bars or cruising down slopes, my hair shinier, my legs skinnier, the item of clothing suiting to nonchalant perfection my more confident persona. It is truly as if I am falling in love, becoming my ‘best self’ whenever in contact with whatever flimsy consumer product I have happened upon in that moment.
Girly clothes-based fantasies aside, ski jackets are an important element of your ski season wardrobe. In the colder months, both boys and girls will rarely be seen without the comforting weight of their heavy jacket. What’s more, on a
busy slope when everyone is muffled up from head to toe your jacket will be become your major identifying feature, picking you out both for those who you want to see and who you don’t want to see. I have often cursed my luminous jacket when, while skiing off a hangover in perfect, suddenly waved down by a bevvy of tourists I apparently met in the bar the night before. This may make your average slope styler hyperventilate at the thought of such a great sartorial responsibility. Fear not; there are some simple ways of avoiding ski jacket disaster.
Tips (completely aesthetic) for picking the perfect seasonaire ski jacket
Fashionable is fine.
Most people have to pick out ski kit bearing in mind that it needs to look timely for at least the next ten years of ski holidays. You don’t have this problem. You’ll be wearing your jacket day in day out so you’ll definitely get enough wear out of it in one season to justify something fashion forward (well as fashion forward as slope style gets).
Go big or go home.
I made the mistake of looking for something fitted and belted with a beautiful fur hood. Yes these coats are gorgeous. Yes they are always more than £800. No you will not want to wear a grand’s worth of jacket to pelt through a nasty bit of off-piste with trees flying out from heaven-knows where. A secondary problem with these chic little numbers is that you are likely to be confused for some 80 year old blue-cruiser from Geneva. A tertiary problem is that the jacket will clash with all but the most minimal of accessories and ski accessories are seriously where it’s at. Conclusion – though the classique look is to be admired from afar a ski season is a time to embrace the baggy look.
All eyes on you.
Bear in mind that your friends will want to be able to pick you out on the slopes. Also bear in mind that when you majorly muck something up everyone will want to pick you out on the slopes. Don’t rock anything too crazy if your moves on the boards don’t live up to it.
Fall in love.
Heed my story as a word of warning. Start looking for the right jacket early.
Roxy make some great jackets. Only thing is that you can almost guarantee there’ll be another seasonaire in resort with the same jacket. This can be embarrassing for the whole slope recognition thing and annoying when you find you’ve come home with the wrong jacket after a party and some girl has therefore wandered off with the keys to your apartment.
You can’t look that bad.
If the worst comes to the worst and you end up with something you don’t like, feel safe in the knowledge that at least you aren’t the worst dressed on the slopes. After all, ski resorts are generally where style and sophistication go to suffer a cold and snowy death.
Please note that all of this is just my internal wrangling to justify paying out on some Topshop atrocity when I have just spent money on a very serviceable jacket.