Tuesday, March 18, 2014

The Big Pink Moving Blanket Coat of Doom, Gail Carriger's Winter Coat

When the AB and I were first together, Fashionable Reader, we went shopping on Haight Street. I find this is a good test of any relationship. Because, frankly, I can out shop almost everyone I know, with few exceptions, and it requires serious stamina to even keep up. The AB proved up to the task, if not entirely happy about the unexpected marathon. I walked away from that epic jaunt with two new jackets, one of them The Big Pink Moving Blanket of Doom. I can't remember the details but I suspect I paid something around $200 for it.

Early on in our relationship, as it was, the AB was circumspect with opinions. Eventually, however, the AB dubbed this the Great Pink Moving Blanket of Doom. And frankly, it does seem a bit like a moving blanket, what with the wide grosgrain trim. I love this jacket. Love it!

Of course, living in the San Francisco Bay Area, I rarely get an opportunity to wear it. But it came with me to Edmonton in November and than recently to New York during a Polar Vortex and earned its space in my closet. The zipper is not a YKK and gives me trouble on occasion, I've had it fixed 2x already, and will probably have to replace it entirely. And, of course, it's a horribly impractical color, but I do love it so.

It's a high-low hem cut with a cross over zipper that fit over the Rack. Its almost drop-waist look is made less frumpy by being basically form fitting, which also keeps it from looking as bulky as most large winter coats would on a curvy figure.

1950 Pink Wrap Coat

The sleeves on my pink coat fit perfectly, and are long and slender. Although sometimes I wish I had a bit more room to layer sweaters under, I find that this coat and a cashmere sweater can take me, at least for the space of an hour minute walk, into well bellow freezing. I do think, in the end, it was worth investing in a quality coat that stands out. Let me just say, in NY (land of black) and Edmonton (land of puffy) this jacket stands out!

Despite the unique cut I think of this pink coat as a maxi coat, and here's a bit of a retrospective on the breed. I'm thinking in terms of both high low, pink, and maxi coats.

For Lord Akeldama a cut away or swallow tale jacket (the original high-low?):

1790s  The Los Angeles County Museum of Art

The early 1800s we see the pelisse...

1820 Pelisse  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

For Dimity after the Finishing School series...

1863-1867 Skating Ensemble The Metropolitan Museum of Art

For Lady Kingair after the Parasol Protectorate series...

1885  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

For Ivy after the Parasol Protectorate series...

1885 Dressing Gown  The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Note the steampunk style and the influence from the earlier pelisse?

For Prudence, Primrose, and company in the Custard Protocol series...

 1890 Worth coat; 1891; 1898  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Custard girls are very brand loyal to House of Worth. 

The turn of the century and beyond...

 1900 Evening Coat  Jean-Philippe Worth  The Metropolitan Museum of Art; 1900s  Antique Dress

1902 Evening Coat  ean-Philippe Worth,  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

1934 Dressing Gown  The Meadow Brook Hall Historic Costume Collection

1949 Evening Coat  Charles James,  The Metropolitan Museum of Art
(I actually have one similar to the one above, only in deep royal blue, and slightly more robe like. For some reason I always forget to wear it.)

1955 Coat  Valentina  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

 1968  Shannon Rogers,  The Metropolitan Museum of Art (BEST COAT EVER!); 1968 Wedding Coatdress The Victoria & Albert Museum

1980 Arnold Scaasi,  Augusta Auctions
Retro Rack is also on facebook where I post additional images and fashion thoughts.


  1. Thanks for including a piece from our archives! Great Post!

  2. Land of the puffy! HA!! Oh man, it's so true. I prefer a fitted wool coat but -40 doesn't lend itself well to those temperatures. Everyone needs a fun cold-weather coat in their closet :) (my old roomie refers to hers as "a family of raccoons")

  3. I am envious that you managed to find such a long coat that is still form fitting! I demand all my winter coats are long enough to cover the seat of pants when I sit down, but have trouble finding coats that look flattering that aren't the feminie trench-coat style. And as much as I love that style, I don't want all my coats to look the same!


If you are using LJ to comment, it may not work.