Burberry trench coat

Is It Worth It? The Burberry Trench Coat

As you may know, we rank a trench coat to be one of the 10 must-have garments every gentleman should haveWe also filmed an in-depth trench coat guide, where we talked about the hallmarks, characteristics, the history, and everything you want to know about a trench coat.

Over the years, Burberry’s trench coats have changed, so let’s look at whether their new line of trench coats are worth it today.

The Burberry Trench Coat

Thomas Burberry wasn’t quite the inventor of the trench coat but his name became synonymous and he popularized it and therefore, today, if people think about a trench coat, the first thing that comes to mind is a Burberry trench coat. The company has been making trench coats for over 150 years, they’ve been around since 1856 and it’s just an iconic garment. It became popular because just like many other overcoats, it was a military garment and there was a surplus after World War II, and so they circulated in public and they became well known for every man and woman on the planet. Over the years, Burberry evolved and today, it’s much more of a lifestyle brand that you can see on catwalks and fashion shows, and not so much the original Burberry brand anymore that used to make a trench coat.

 

 

The classic Burberry double-breasted trench coat today costs $1,895 on the Burberry website. Yes, you should definitely go with a double-breasted version because that’s the original. They also have single-breasted ones but I suggest not to use those. The current heritage models they offer have the typical Novacek, they also added it underneath the collar which looks nice if you like it popped up, but also the lining is Novacek. Novacek is a name for a specific tartan that is usually associated with Burberry, although it’s also imitated by other companies. Unlike in previous years, this trench coat is made in England as the original one and it is made out of a hundred percent cotton gabardine which is a fabric Thomas Burberry invented, or at least became famous and well known for, and it’s the ideal material you want for a trench coat. Less expensive versions contain polyester in various amounts but 100 percent cotton is the highest quality you can get. Even though the lining is made of 100% cotton, the sleeves, unfortunately, are just made of viscose which is a really inexpensive artificial fiber made of cellulose.

Wool Liner & Burberry Trench Coat Tartan

Wool Liner & Burberry Trench Coat Tartan

The great thing about a modern Burberry trench coat is that it comes in four lengths as well as four fit styles. Now, the fit of all Burberry trench coats is slimmer than it used to be, it’s simply an adaptation to modern times which in my opinion, is not a bad thing because you want a trim look that flatters your body line. The relaxed fit is definitely the widest fit they offer and it’s made for layering, so if you wear jackets underneath a lot, maybe a sweater or a cardigan, this is the fit you should get. The classic fit is more tapered in the waist yet you can still wear a suit jacket underneath of it. The slim fit is the slimmest fit they offer and it’s not meant to be worn with something underneath but it creates a very nice if you shape. Last but not least, the tailored fit, it is somewhere between a classic fit and a slim fit.

Delon in Burberry Trench Coat

Delon in Burberry Trench Coat

In terms of a length, the original trench coat was quite long and ranged from ankle length, all the way up to knee length. Today, Burberry’s lengths are much shorter; with short being just ever so slightly longer than a jacket, the medium being what I would call short, and long being what I would call medium, even their extra long version just reaches the knee. In my opinion, it’s a classic length for a trench coat and if you want a classic look, I suggest to go with a relaxed fit, extra long. The armholes on modern Burberry trench coats are smaller than on the old ones which are nice because it allows for a better range of movement. While the original trench coat had Raglan sleeves and you can still get it from Burberry, most of them are in a more classic sleeve which means the sleeve is set in without a raglan. Personally, I own both styles and I like them. if I will just get one trench coat, I’ll probably up through Raglan simply it’s a traditional choice. 

There was a time when Burberry left out traditional hallmarks simply to be more in line with current fashion, they also offered the original one with a belt, with a chest flap, and with a throat hooks.

Is It Worth It To Get The New Burberry Trench Coat?

Every gentleman should have a trench coat but it doesn’t necessarily have to be Burberry. Fortunately, it won’t go out of style and Burberry is associated with the original. Even though almost 1900 dollars for a cotton overcoat is quite a bit of money, you’d consider the cost per wear as this garment can be worn in every transitional season between fall-winter, and spring-summer. Sometimes they even come with a liner which extends the range of when you can wear it. Overall, if you want original length Burberry trench coat, the new model is not worth your money because it’s simply not long enough.

On the other hand, if you want a flattering fit and you want to choose between the different lengths and the fits, and if you have the money, it’s definitely worth it. It’s a good investment, it won’t go out of style, and you won’t regret your purchase. Just make sure you get a camel or khaki color which is the original, at least if it’s your first trench coat. If you have multiple ones, you can also go with maybe a navy, or a black one which is more advantageous when you travel simply because it doesn’t stain as easily. Definitely also make sure you get the 100% cotton version that is made in England because of a higher quality than other models you can find from them.

In terms of the model, I suggest you get the Westminster extra long heritage because that’s the closest one but still has a very attractive fit. Now if $1,900 are simply too much for you, I hear you, gladly there is a wonderful option which is vintage Burberry trench coats and there are lots of them out there.

Burberry Westminster trench coat

Burberry Westminster trench coat

Are Vintage Burberry Trench Coats Worth It?

Yes, absolutely! No matter your budget everyone can afford that one. The problem is, fit can vary hugely. You can find some very big ones that are more like sac style, or some more contemporary fitted ones. You can find them at flea markets or maybe on eBay, just make sure you’re able to return them.

As always, it pays to know the measurements of the garment as well as your own so you’ll find something that fits. Make sure you get a made in England model, and if you want to compromise, you can get maybe a composition with 70% cotton and 30% polyester or something in that range.

Ideally, you want a hundred percent cotton. price-wise, they go from anywhere between $100 and $400 depending on the condition. I’d always go for a little higher condition because otherwise, you have something with worn out edges, maybe the buckles are worn out, and if you get something that’s a little nicer, it’s better. Bear in mind, you can always exchange buckles and buttons just like I did here which really helps to create a different look for your trench coat.

Trench Coat Hallmarks

Trench Coat Hallmarks

So At The End Of The Day, Is A Burberry Trench Coat Worth It?

New, it is not worth it if you want the original length, and the original width, and fullness, however, if you want the modern fit and if you have the money, it’s definitely worth it. if you go with a vintage trench coat, it is definitely worth it because it will never go out of style, you can always wear it. The cost per wear is low and it’s just a classic staple that every man should have. Personally, I have three different trench coats. The first one I bought was a non-Burberry one and it had a typical khaki color but once I got it, I realized it lacks certain features. Next up, I got the black trench coat, I actually was able to find it at a secondhand store in Hamburg and I was only able to afford it at the time, it cost I think 200 bucks because I just made money selling my Goyard suitcases. I was ok with the black because I already had the khaki color and I really like the fit of this trench coat. It has a nice white overlap, the armholes are slim, the sleeve length was right, and it just looked really dapper in me. The third trench coat is the most traditional one, it has the widest cut, it also has the Raglan sleeves. It already came with some really nice buttons and just left them on there simply because I liked it. It also has a storm hooks, the latches, and it comes with the detachable green wool liner. I think this one is buttoned in, sometimes you can also find some that are zipped in but I think the button is more original.

CONCLUSION

Today’s article is really just about the Burberry trench coat and we discuss whether it’s worth it or if you should invest your money in another brand. If you like this Is It Worth It video, we’ll do more like that, may be about the Montblanc Meisterstuck fountain pen, or the Gucci loafers, or any other iconic menswear item that we often hear about, but not sure whether it’s really worth the money.

Let us know what you think! Feel free to drop a comment below.

Summary
Is It Worth It? The Burberry Trench Coat
Article Name
Is It Worth It? The Burberry Trench Coat
Description
An in-depth review of the Burberry trench coat; a comparison between the vintage trench coat & the newer versions of Burberry.
Author
Publisher
Gentleman's Gazette LLC
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23 replies
  1. Andrew Gregg says:

    Greetings,

    Is the $1,900.00 Burberry made in Great Britain, or has the sew job been farmed out to an Asian sweat shop?

    Please advise.

    Sincerely,

    Andrew Gregg,
    Palm Springs, CA

    Reply
  2. gordon says:

    I am British old school type. I recently returned to London and visited the new Burberry flagship store in Regent Street (sadly nothing resembling the former store in the Haymarket). I inquired if they stocked for men their classic trench coats. Sadly they don’tand looked at me strangely. All they have is this, as described; ersatz version of the former trench. To me its simply horrible. The good news for those interested is that on Google US , UK & France etc. you can still find the fine good condition original models either in poly- cotton (but check the composition) and cotton. Another excellent English company worth looking up that recently folded is Aquascutum which , in my opinion ,made equally good trench coats and is said to be the originator in World War 1. I have both in light beige which fall two to three inches below the knee and have the traditional full storm flaps beneath the collar.

    Reply
  3. Nick P says:

    Always think of Aquascutum when I think of classic trench coats. It really invented the modern version I think and has some great heritage (Margaret Thatcher wore Aquascutum, for instance along with male fashion icons like the Duke of Windsor and Cary Grant). Not sure about its quality these days as firm has struggled financially with several ownership changes but a vintage Aquascutum is probably good value.

    Reply
  4. rico says:

    I left NYC over thirty years ago. I had been the proud owner of a Burberry trench coat for the previous five years.

    When I purchased it, I was surprised by all the liners, flaps and options that came with this wonderful coat. I was however, never without an answer to weather conditions.

    I’m retired now and living in a tropical region. My trusty trench coat is in a garment bag ever ready to serve.

    When I travel to a colder region, I am confident my good friend will have my back. I am never out of style and somehow time has no effect on the construction of my Burberry.

    I intend to pass this gem onto my grand children along with some of my other timeless style pieces……someday.

    Reply
  5. Neil says:

    In the conclusion, you say that you discuss whether to invest in another brand …. and yet Burberry is the only maker mentioned in the entire piece. How can you really answer the question “is it worth it?” unless you actually compare the Burberry with something other than itself?

    Aquascutum’s trench is often mentioned as a quality alternative in style literature. A comparison of the cuts, styling and features with Aquascutum, or other makes would have been interesting.

    Reply
  6. Robert Beebe says:

    The thing is, a Burberry trench will last for a very long time. That results in a low cost per year, which means it is a good investment at almost any price. I bought one in 1958 and wore it for about thirty years. At that point the collar was worn through so I replaced it with another similar heavy Burberry trench. I liked these so well that I also bought a really great lightweight one of similar style, but with regular, not raglan, shoulders. So two robust trench coats in a sixty year span is pretty good service, I’d say. For me, the trench coat HAS to be long so as to keep the rain off your pants, and, buttoned-up and hooked, keep the cold wind away from your chest. My Burberry trench still does that very nicely every time I put it on.

    Reply
  7. lastyleguy says:

    If at all possible, try to find a vintage version of the trench. (I bought mine new about 20 years ago.) The cotton is this gorgeous Burberry green, and the button-in liner is wool. Today’s versions just don’t measure up to the classic look and feel. If you want to channel your inner Humphrey Bogart, hold out for a classic vintage model.

    Reply
  8. Steve Merrill says:

    I enjoyed this article, especially about the various types and styles of the Burberry trench coats available now and before. One of my best sources of older Burberry trench coats has been the Goodwill stores in the surrounding areas within my proximity. They make great presents for family and friends and are certainly affordable with the most expensive being less than $50. I prefer the older Burberrys’ (with the apostrophe)with the belt over some of the other brands like Christian Dior, Armani and Aquascutum mainly for the quality, appearance and history. They are always a head turner.

    Reply
  9. Cristian Teleucă says:

    Dear Raphael, I have eight Burberrys trench coats and I can tell you that Alain Delon’s trench is not a Burberry. It’s an Aquascutum. If you’ll watch again one of the first scenes from Le Samourai and you’ll look at the throat latch system, you will agree that I’am right. Whit respect, Cristian

    Reply
  10. Richard Marinaro says:

    Bought my first Burberry in 1978 from Barney’s NYC (when they still sold classic clothing) because I am 6’4″ and needed an extra long. They were the only place I could find the XL It was the classic all cotton, wool button-out lining, belted, double breasted, falling just below the knee. I lived in NYC and worked in advertising. Despite the cost (at this point in my career this was a financial stretch) I viewed it as a good “investment”. I wore this coat everyday (November-March) for about 5 years. It served me well in the brutal NYC winters walking to/from work AND the very recognizable Burberry coat certainly made the right statement in the image conscious ad business. One of the challenges in owning a Burberry was keeping it from being stolen when you took it off at a NYC saloon after work!m I had to retire the coat when the sleeves became too frayed to be wearable. Recently visited the Burberry store here in Dallas. Sadly, there was nothing I would consider wearing. And the quality, given the price, just isn’t there. The salesperson had no clue when I described the classic trench.
    Yes, you can still find some classic Burberry’s on ebay and at some resale shops. Enjoyed your article,
    +

    Reply
  11. Curt says:

    Am i mistaken, or are the vintage coats made by Burberry’s, not Burberry? I understood that the original manufacturer sold the company to a new one, which dropped the ” ‘s”. I further understood that the new company’s quality is not as high as they were. Am I wrong about this?

    Reply
  12. Simon says:

    Another alternative is a 2nd hand trench by another manufacturer.

    I bought 2 London Fog trench coats (one tan, one navy) at a thrift shop for $30 each.

    OK, they are not up to the quality of Burberry or Aquascutum but they are pretty good and fine for everyday wear. And they give you the “trench coat style” in spades. And at a fraction of the cost of a new Burberry.

    Reply
  13. B. Quinn says:

    Loved your Trench Coat Guide, and this too, especially re buying used classic Burberrys trench coats on eBay, etc. I largely agree with your recommendations, especially (if you can find one) the preference for 100% cotton over the blends, mainly because of its suitability for the warmest of wet days. Having tried both on sticky, muggy NYC rainy warm summer days over a suit, usually a summer weight of course, I can attest that only the all-cotton will keep you dry AND not overwarm, and it keeps your light weight suit (which will wrinkle more easily) looking better too; the blends are just too hot to wear then. At other, cooler times, they are both equal at keeping you dry and warm, but in summer only all-cotton will do.

    When I first came to NYC as a student in the late 1970s, I shopped at the old Barneys for raincoats, at that time the top of the line, i.e., all-cotton with button-in wool liner and collar, double-breasted made in England Burberrys’ trench, cost the princely sum of $285, which I thought was an insane amount (at the time you could get a decent apartment in the Village for that monthly amount), so I found a ‘deal’ where I bought a London Fog off a rack in the Garment District for $100, cash only. It was not quite authentic in its particulars like the Burberry, and was a blend, but worked well for some years. Later, when I had more dough, I bought the top all-cotton DB at the Burberry store on 57th street, and allowed the store to custom embroider my initials onto the Burberrys’ label, cost then, mid-1980s, $785 (I should have bought the same earlier at Barneys, but live and learn). I still have that, size 38L, although it’s going to my son as having grown in size (now, a 48), I can no longer wear it with a suit. My latest was mid-2000s, when I scored an almost new top all-cotton with button-in liner and collar, made in England, retail as you say $1,800, on eBay from a thrift store seller in Brooklyn. It was listed as a size 56, and as such no one was bidding (who could wear a 56? Shaq O’neal?). With some research (I called Burberry) I discovered that all sizes and styles except for the top cotton were by then made not in England and had been, as you say, updated to be sized more like what the number indicated, but the top all-cotton classic was still generously sized and made in England; they also said that even so, the top was now marked with Euro sizing. Long story short, that meant, with luck, that the ‘56’ on eBay was really a U.S. 46, and so I bought it, and indeed it was, almost new and perfectly sized for my now 48 corpus. Price? $85! So, yes, you can find deals and get what you seek on eBay, just be careful and thorough.

    As to sizing, the older ones are as said generous, so my 38L fit perfectly up through 43, even a 44, suit size. Now, as a 48, I can get it on and buttoned, but over a T-shirt only, even then I have to remove the liner; it would not work over a suit or other jacket. Hence, the lucky ‘56’. And I discovered why they were so big-sized, which had puzzled me for years. I found a print ad from Barker’s of Kensington High Street, London, W8, a competitor Army-Navy supplier in the Nov. 1, 1918 Stars and Stripes, which, in the small print, provides the final clue: they were sized not only to wear over a uniform (civilian equivalent: a suit), but also a British Warm, i.e., AN OVERCOAT. So, if it’s really cold and rainy in the trench, you can be both warm and dry. I would never think to wear a raincoat over an overcoat, but then again I’ve never been in a trench at the front. This explains the generous cut and over-sizing perfectly I believe, mystery solved. But it means you must know this size shift when buying, so if you’re, as said, a 44, you don’t need, for the older, classic ones, a 44, it’ll be waaay too large, you need a 38 or at most (thinking ahead) maybe a 40. The newer ones are sized in actuality more closely to the indicated size.

    The only downside to the all-cotton versus the blends is that the former will wear more at cuff ends and also the skirt on the bottom, so that over time you get very, very small rub throughs at the edges which may fray a bit; none of this affects its weatherproofing. And as you note, the leather on the buckles can wear. I suggest not wearing your lined Burberry day-after-day as a substitute topcoat, but limit it to wet days; for traveling, OTOH, it fills both needs with one coat.

    One last tip: whether all-cotton or blend, particularly with the lighter colors, i.e., tans, but less so for the greenish ones and certainly less for blues and blacks (although as a matter of class, I would abjure those), you will see soiling over time, and should consider spraying when new or just cleaned with Scotchguard, which will not only additionally waterproof the coat but will prevent dirt from adhering (the stains don’t penetrate the fabric, but sit on top of it, an easy wipe with a wet paper towel will lift it right off). The Scotchguard doesn’t affect the fabric’s breathability at all, unlike other methods, and doesn’t stain or smell once dry. Just be sure to get the correct Scotchguard. Also, if the coat needs cleaning, dry clean only, unless you like the puckered wrinkled look, i.e., these coats can be washed but once done it’s a permanent change (see Humphrey Bogart’s coat in the pic with Ingrid Bergman in the Trench Coat Guide for an example). Finally, from experience, the only side pockets to have in actual heavy rain are those with flaps; I have had rainwater literally run down and pour into the London Fog’s unflapped pockets but never with the Burberry (whether or not with buttons on the pocket, it’s the flap which matters). And, FYI, the small sleeve buckled wrist straps are to keep falling rain from running down your arms whilst one has one’s hands in the upright position, like using binoculars at the front or on the lookout bridge of a ship; that is their only purpose.

    And although a matter of personal taste, I entirely agree with the preference for the longer length for the classics (at least to just below the knee if not more), I just think it makes the overall look better; and after all the goal is to keep the rain off, so the more coverage the better. See the coat in the Burberrys’ ad in the Trench Coat Guide for my sense of the exact proper length; your mileage (and taste) may vary.

    All in all, a great Trench Coat Guide, and great advice here on classic Burberrys and how to obtain them. Bravo Zulu (sorry, I’m a Navy man, means ‘well done’).

    Reply
  14. Kian Taheri says:

    Loved this Article!
    -It should be noted that if you want a modern fit you can also tailor a vintage coat-worked great for me!
    -I think many people would love some sort of content relating to how to pair trench coats (and overcoats in general) with the rest of their fall/winter wardrobe
    -Please let me know where to get buttons and buckles replaced if possible
    Big fan!

    Reply
  15. Johnny Ham says:

    The Burberry trench coat hanging in my closet is at least twenty years old and was purchased new. It has kept me warm and dry for all these years and will probably never go out of style. Mine is the type with the removable storm collar. I purchased a navy blue storm collar to provide a bit of contrast with the rest of the coat. It still receives compliments from friends who know of my predilection for wardrobe staples from Burberry and Barbour. Is a new Burberry trench coat a good value? The answer depends on how long you will own it and how often you will wear it.

    Reply
  16. Joe says:

    I bought a trench coat recently purely on the back of the general review of Trenchcoats that were done here recently by Sven. The article was just superb as it identified all the appropriate makes and ranges. I opted for a Navy Aquascutum in a single breast. It is perfectly light yet warm and fits snugly over a suit and is absolutely waterproof. It cost me €400 and was worth every single cent. I think it was a no nonsense back-to-basic classic alternative to the newer Trench coats on offer from Burberry. I already know from the quality of the material that this is a coat that I will have for many years.

    Reply
  17. Ray says:

    Thank you for your informative videos. This particular video of yours helped me decide to search for a vintage Burberrys’ made in England trench. After two weeks I scored one on Kijiji. It belonged to a gentleman that gave it up after buying it in London on a trip as a souvenir and it was rarely worn. It has the 51/49 cotton/polyester fabric in tan khaki, a 100 wool zipped lining, hidden collar small strap button, all buckles are in very good condition. Trying it on is impressive for the drape, the fit, the weight of fabric and lining, and seeing all the details confirm that at one time Burberrys was a standard bearer for quality in the trench coat category. I intend to keep this for decades. Thanks again!

    Reply
  18. Joe says:

    I love this article (and a previous article about the trench coat guide). So here is my story: I purchased a vintage Burberry (“Burberrys’ “) trench coat with all the buckles (in great condition), and the extra buttons (one button I notice is chipped but you can’t see the chip since it is behind the button, not worth replacing right now). It also has a button-in wool liner. It is a complete set basically. The imperfection is that there is a patch repair job in the back that is visible (it is located at the bottom so not in first view, same fabric and color which is the khaki color). I LOVE this coat even though I rarely wear it (afraid to ruin it lol). It is a 40 regular. It is made in the USA, and it is the gabardine (cotton/polyester blend, wool liner). I know that it is ideal to have a pure cotton coat but this coat was a steal. My trench had a price tag of $17.99, but the Store had a 50% sale on coats, so it was less than $10. I think I got lucky.

    Now the coat does go below the knee. The bottom of the coat reaches to about half way of my calf. Is that a good fit for me? I know it’s relative but I read that it is ok, but sometimes it is ideal to have a shorter coat (I am 5’7” tall). I think the USA quality matches the quality of ones made in the UK.

    Does anyone have a coat that was made in the USA? What do you think of the quality?

    Reply
    • Joe says:

      And by the way, after dry cleaning both the liner and the coat (and fixing/tightening up a loose button), total investment was $37. The Store I am referring to is a place that is like a GoodWill. However I find this particular store to be on par or beating prices that of GoodWill. The issue when I bought the coat was how wrinkled it was. Of course the dry cleaning took care of that. I get compliments on it too.

      Reply

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