Shopping: J.Crew Regent Topcoat

Ah, the Regent. Never has a style of blazer (and now, a Regent topcoat) led to such heated debate. Some peopleĀ  love the style. Others loathe it, mainly because of the upright collar. Is it a cost cutting move on J.Crew’s part? Is it their attempt to cash in on what seems to be a trend? (the female attorneys on the Good Wife were wearing straight collar suit jackets several seasons before J.Crew’s made its debut.) Is it just because a straight collar can look pretty flattering?

Who knows. All I know is that I wanted a black topcoat that looked similar to the 12th Doctor’s black Crombie coat but that didn’t cost more than $1,000 like these ones here and here.

j.crew regent coat
J.Crew Regent Coat buttoned up.

J.Crew’s Regent Topcoat seemed to fit the bill. It’s got some nice menswear styling, like the little chest pocket, a slim fit, and it’s 100% wool. Sure, it lacks the vibrant red lining of a real Crombie coat and the collar is wrong. But, I like it.


Now for the details. I got the coat in a size 6, my usual size. It’s only available in regular or petites, or I might have gone for a tall size. As it is, the 6 regular is fine, in terms of arm length and overall length. It hits at about my knees and falls slightly below the hem of my skirt.

There were some reviews on J.Crew’s website that said that the sleeves were a bit tight. I put that to the test by trying the coat on over top of a cardigan and a Schoolboy blazer (which seems to have been replaced with the much less beloved Rhodes blazer).

Did it work?jcrew_regent_topcoat_layers

Yes, but… it’s not the best look. It definitely makes my shoulders look a bit more like a footballer’s. So, I think I’ll skip the excessive layering with this one.

J.Crew Regent topcoat collar
Closeup of the collar

Now for the collar. I dunno — I think it looks pretty sharp. It’s a bit scratchy, but here’s the thing – it also folds down. So, if the stand-up collar really bugs you, but you like the rest of the coat’s details, you can just fold it down. jcrew_regent_topcoat_lining

The coat is made of a soft serge wool, which J.Crew calls “double serge.” I don’t actually know what the “double” means — are they referring to the weave of the wool or its thickness? Or is it just some slick marketing thing?

Who knows. It’s a somewhat fuzzy wool and I am slightly concerned that it will pill, especially in the under arm area. We’ll see. Apparently, there’s no way to tell if a fabric will pill or not. There are actually special machines out there that will test fabric, but there’s no guarantee that something won’t pill until you bring it home, even if you drop hundreds of dollars on a garment. So, fingers crossed that the coat doesn’t pill, because I’m quite a fan of it.


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