The winter shopping checklist is the same every year: a sturdy pair of boots, a statement coat for special occasions, and a more durable one for when the weather really rears its ugly head. If you’re the obsessive-planner type, chances are you’ve already stocked up on your doomsday favorites, but there is a world outside of Canada Goose and J.Crew.
Enter three coat brands you’ve (probably) never heard of: Baro Drywear, Koja, and Basler. They’re not as omnipresent on the cold-weather-coat circuit just yet, but when put to the test, these brands are worthy contenders for your winter arsenal.
Arguably no other group understands frigid temperatures better than Canadians, and, fittingly, our neighbors up north have established labels with cult followings for their ability to withstand months (and months) of snow. Vancouver-based outerwear line Baro Drywear is another name to know in the mix of Sorel and Canada Goose. Following in the tradition of great Canadian outerwear, Baro is a streamlined and affordable option that doesn’t skimp on the necessities: The men’s and women’s coats are completely waterproof and tout moisture-wicking liners and breathable construction. Price: $
Venturing on the side of trendy can be fun, but if you truly want your coat to stand the test of time, consider a classic. Originally founded by Fritz Basler and his wife Elisabeth in 1936, Berlin-based coat company Basler specializes in tailored wool peacoats and stylish puffer jackets. The brand has expanded to include a line of womenswear with an impressive plus-size range.
If you’re working with a bigger budget, premium shearling and leather-coat line Koja is the brand to try. Started by mother-daughter team Irene and Diana Zwetzich, who have braved harsh winters in their native Kazakhstan for years, the brand uses high-end materials sourced from the same Spanish and Italian factories behind luxury labels like Gucci and Prada. Already, Koja has snapped up members of the Instagram fashion elite, counting Eva Chen and Glossier’s Emily Weiss as fans. The brand’s signature piece is a military-inspired suede-and-shearling coat ($1,700).
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