Word to my mother, if I ever hit big money the first thing I'm shelling out on is outerwear. I don't make much in comparison to others (or the parents of others) wearing some of the clothes that I do, but I definitely don't mind splurging the money I save while still living at home and paying for dirt cheap secondary education on outerwear. Winter in Montreal can start from the middle of October to the end of April if we aren't lucky, which makes for a very long six months when a day of -15C/5F is considered warm.
I don't really remember what made me think getting a Superdry jacket was a good idea, but it paid off. Unfortunately I did buy it too small and was too lazy to return it, but other than that the jacket is more or less perfect. I wear it to work with my usual simple tank top and button down, and it still keeps me nice and toasty. It has three zippers, which is quite odd, but they do that so the jacket holds you tightly and braces the enclosure against any cold. The fleece on the inside has come off a bit on my clothes, but it isn't a hassle to brush off. The inside of the jacket has a drawstring elastic to pull in the waist of the jacket, and has the same tabs on the bottom of the jacket to allow it to be pulled tight around your thighs. The only thing I would improve in the jacket would be to probably include an extra pocket inside the jacket.
- The Jacket. The jacket is probably the most important things in the entire ensemble. I can't really remember what made me look at Superdry for this time around, but after going through -30C/-22F winds in it, I'm glad I did. The Hooded Super Windcheater folds quite thin and has a fleece lining instead of being stuffed with down feathers. Down feathers are cool and all, but if you get a rip in the stitching, they start coming out and it's just a mess. Fleece lining, removable hood with faux fur trimming, three layered zips (which seems unnecessary, but actually helps hold the jacket tight and brace against the wind), an inner elastic drawstring at the waist and bottom hem, and thumb holes (which I will never understand the use for). The only thing that could make this jacket better would be an inner pocket. However, be warned, Superdry sizing runs very small. I bought according to my dress size, and the jacket is quite tight in the shoulders and I'm unable to layer underneath it. If you like to layer, I would definitely suggest going up a size or two, although so far I don't feel the need to; I'm quite warm even if I'm just wearing a t-shirt.
- The Snood. I've never heard of a snood before, but take an infinity scarf and put a faux fur lining in it, and there's the Diving Bell Snood. I love this thing dearly. Because my jacket is so tight, it doesn't exactly close all the way up the neck, so the snood does a great job of protecting my collar bone area to about my chin in chunky folds of soft fluffiness. Great for falling asleep in and you're able to bunch it up at least around your ears and nose if you have to wait for a bus. Word to the wise, do not put this thing in the dryer and semi-ruin it like I did due to forgetfulness.
- The Gloves. I basically only go to Off The Hook for concert tickets, but I found these North Face eTip Gloves and picked them up. Now...these things are more or less useless. They're good if you're driving and want to use your phone while you stand outside and pump gas. They hold absolutely no warmth and the only good thing about them is I can use my devices with them. I have serious doubts that they'll make it to next year, but they're okay for now. If you're always on the phone, I guess they can be a good idea, but only if you pair them with "hobo" mittens.
- The Mittens. These mittens you can probably find at any little cheapie store. While my gloves are absolutely useless on their own, paired with these mittens they become much more bearable. My thumbs stay warm and I can use my other fingers to do stuff, which makes texting take a lot longer if you're not using Siri or Google Voice. Best thing about wearing layered mittens like this is that between the mittens and gloves you can always slip those little hand warmer packages to give your hands some life again.
- The Earmuffs. With really big hair, I'm not really a fan of hats, and only have a few beanies. Earmuffs are preferred for keeping those Diana Ross styles poppin and my ears warm. I also like if you slip EarBuds/earphones under the earmuffs, you sorta get a bit of noise cancelation. The ones I have I got at Ardene, which is like the European version of Rainbows.
- The Bag. The bag is a big part of it. It's cold outside, everyone's pressed up against each other...having the right bag just helps. I'm a big fan of the Fjallraven Kanken bags because of how easy it is to pack things into it, convert it from a backpack to a tote, and how lightweight it is. Also the fact that it's bright yellow helps (but requires at least a weekly washing), but you could also just get a reflector keychain or something and attach it to a darker coloured bag.
- The Timberlands. Classics, just classic. I have every pair of Timbs imaginable, but I've been sitting with these (originally bought just for fall wear) for a while and really enjoying it. Lacing them is a bit of a hassle, but keeping the wind off my shins and getting a grip on already packed in snow and ice is nice. I try to wipe them down with a damp cloth every night to get rid of the salt they put down on the street and investing in a simple winterproofing spray has them constantly looking brand new.
- The Pajars. If I could only keep one pair of boots, it'd be my Pajars. I've literally burned out the bottoms of my Pajars (don't want to talk about it), so they don't have much grip in them anymore, but they're still useful. In snow, especially heavy snow that hasn't been compacted yet or is wet and slushy, the Pajars are your best bet. The boots are entirely waterproof, a fact I can attest to after accidentally stepping into a pothole filled with icy cold slush water, and don't need any fasteners since they're the type you just shove your foot in.
Stay warm this season lovelies! Don't forget your thermoses of warm tea/coffee/"tea"!
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