In my quest to find the perfect jacket to wear, I’ve purchased multiples to find the best solution to keeping warm and dry while living and traveling in Europe.
Those of you living on the Pacific west coast may be ready for the climate here, but living in CO, TX and FL meant my wardrobe just didn’t cut it. No matter what I wore, it never seemed to be warm enough or keep out the wind and rain.
I was constantly on the lookout for the killer coat. The one coat that would work in most weather, keep me warm and dry and of course look good with everything else in my closet. Tall order!
You want to pack light and make sure ONE coat will do exactly what I said. Keep you warm, dry and feeling stylish. Am I right?
The secret to staying comfortable, dry and warm here is layers.
Although it’s not super cold here, it can feel downright chilly when it’s wet and windy.
The temperatures in England and other coastal areas like France, Italy and Spain are relatively mild. Mid to upper 40s maybe even tipping low 50s during the day and then in high 30s to low 40s at night. That’s typical winter, spring and late fall weather.
If you heard about the recent spring storms Ciara and Dennis, you’ll know the UK can get severe rainy weather. But the norm is gentle or persistent light rain mixed with dry periods and even some sunshine!
To keep you dry, you’ll want your jacket to be water resistant if not water proof. I’ve found that unless a jacket is rubberized or coated it isn’t considered water-proof. Water resistant will work perfectly for most of your travels; unless you plan to be hiking outside a lot. The downside to true water proof jackets like rain slickers, is you may end up feeling like you’re in a hot flash or sauna. The ideal coat should be in a fabric that breathes when it gets wet and dries out easily.
In case you’re wondering if I found my favorite jacket; the answer is this Eddie Bauer thigh length quilted coat in deep olive green. Unfortunately it’s been discontinued!
Because I think the quilted jacket is very versatile I’ve chosen these quilted, waxed and lined jackets for you. Any of them will make you look as if you just stepped off the estate and are ready to get into your Range Rover! But they’re also very practical. If you want to tone down the country gentry look, then choose a clean lined quilted coat like the Calvin Klein.
All of these colors are neutral and would go well with your jeans, chinos, joggers or knee length skirt. Wear them with sneakers, ankle boots or knee high boots – have fun with it!
Best Women’s Jackets for Traveling in Europe
Traveling to the north of Scotland or plan to be hiking?
- Choose a jacket with a lining or with room to layer a down vest or sweater underneath for extra warmth. I would suggest a longer jacket to keep your behind and legs covered and warm. Your main goal is to stay warm, but you shouldn’t have to sacrifice style.
Spending most of your time in London and in a car or train?
- A stylish quilted jacket in a dark color will take you everywhere. If you choose a shorter jacket, you can layer long sweaters underneath. Believe me it can still feel very chilly walking down a city street, the wind tunnel effect I think it’s called. So don’t skimp on warmth.
Visiting southern France, Italy or Spain?
- Temperatures will be several degrees warmer here. You’ll still need to be prepared for showers and the occasional chilly spell, but you can probably get away with a lighter jacket. The vibe will be less Barbour and more micro puff jacket in cities. You can’t go wrong with the Barbour or quilted coat look anywhere else in the countryside.
Packing Tip: I try to pack two or three main colors.
Blue’s my favorite color and I also seem to wear a lot of olive green like my favorite coat. Fortunately green and blue work well together.
What’s your favorite color palette? Pink, cream and gray? Blue, gray and white? Find a coat that will keep you warm, dry and easily coordinate with your tops and pants. Use a scarf to pull it all together. Cheers!