Outerwear

If you live on the East Coast, you've experienced a lot of ups and downs in temperature. For example, today all you need for outerwear is a jean jacket, but in two days it'll be time for thermals. So it goes that having coats for different temperatures and seasons is appropriate and mostly necessary (unless you live in California).

With outerwear, there are a lot of options for construction and fabric, technically for different conditions, but for most of us they're more for aesthetic whimsy. Regardless of what seasons you're experiencing, it's good to have an appropriate coat. Here's to staying warm this winter (but not too warm).

1. Pointer Brand Chore Coat

The chore coat is a classic style, and Pointer Brand makes a great version of it. I gave this coat to my brother-in-law three years ago and he has practically lived in it since then while attending to the various tasks related to having a farm and being a great dad. I don't know if I can give a more ringing endorsement for a hard wearing, tough piece of clothing that is made well and looks good.

@ Pointer Brand ($87.25)

2. Beams Plus Fleece-Lined Jersey Bomber Jacket

I find most of what Beams Plus makes to be very desirable; their clothes are well made and understated, while having details that take you by surprise. For example, this bomber jacket looks as simple as a track jacket you'd find on the rack at a thrift store, but then you see that it's fleece lined, has subtle curves in the shape of the collar and on the side pockets to give it less of a square shape, and has a red zipper for a nice pop of color. This one would be a fun jacket to have.

@ Mr. Porter ($115, on sale from $230)

3. Topo Designs Mountain Jacket

Topo Designs makes great bags and duffels, and in recent years has expanded their product line to apparel and accessories. One of the flagship pieces they've developed is this nylon, hooded Mountain Jacket, which is water resistant and has a bevy of useful pockets. Probably my favorite feature is that you can compress the jacket into one of the pockets to make a pillow.

In three colorways @ Topo Designs ($279)

4. Barena Venezia Fonda TV Coat

Barena is known for making refined clothing that doesn't take itself too seriously. The fabrics they use make their clothes come across as casual and comfortable, but they're tailored so well that you look nicely dressed up without feeling like you are. This double-breasted coat caught my eye immediately when I first saw it earlier this fall because it takes the rigid form and function of a pea coat and improves on it with a more vibrant color and slightly altered silhouette. It's just a good-looking coat if you ask me.

@ Carson Street Clothiers ($425, on sale from $850)

5. Alpha Industries N-3B Parka

Alpha Industries is one of the original outfitters of the military, known for their flight jackets, bombers, and pea coats, among other styles. The N-3B Parka style is one of their classic designs, with a nylon outer and polyester fill, it's made to keep you warm in extreme conditions and for a price that won't break your budget.

Available in nine colorways @ Alpha Industries ($185)