They say that northern Europeans once pictured hell as a vast icy chasm, whose inhabitants were frozen, not fried, forever. As an inhabitant of a fairly wet and chilly country in said part of the world, I can appreciate where such sentiments arose, out of the Viking and Saxon earth. There is surely nothing worse than feeling cold, despite best efforts to prevent it. The chill creeps into your bones and pierces you to the marrow. Damp clings to your fingertips and drags you down into an icy darkness. Once truly cold from inside out, only a hot bath or drink can revive you to your former self. When the snow falls and the ice settles, Jack Frost becomes a grinning character from some nightmare, waiting to freeze unsuspecting travellers and confine them to a white-blue grave.
With such a fear of being cold, March is a particularly trying month for me. The instant we see a tiny ray of sunshine, everyone ditches their winter coats. Men walk around in t-shirts, women gamely bring out the short skirts of summers past. ‘Hang on a minute, it’s still cold!’ I want to cry. Even a denim jacket or leather coat will not keep out the chill when the sun hides behind a cloud.
For many years I took to wearing my winter coat in any weather. Even in late June you would find me in the park with friends, wrapped in my red military trench coat, insisting that it was not warm enough to sunbathe. It was only when I moved to a house near the sea that I realised this could not go on indefinitely.
Luckily for me, this year there is a new type of coat widely available. The quilted jacket offers protection from our unpredictable climate whilst keeping the wearer looking fabulous.
Quilted jackets are thin, light-weight short coats which have a quilted layer inside. This helps to insulate the wearer, without the bulk associated with a winter coat. Coming in a range of colours and designs, there is a quilted jacket to suit any outfit or any occasion.
Surely a better option than either to wear a heavy coat in spring, or risking the elements with no coat at all, a quilted jacket is the halfway house between. Its cut and lightweight style make it a flattering choice for women of any size. This season, you could team your quilted jacket with skinny jeans and shoe boots to look on-trend. My particular favourite is a black leather quilted jacket, which makes the wearer look edgy and fun, whilst also keeping him or her warm.
A quilted jacket is your best fashion buy this spring. What are you waiting for – go and buy one today!
Frances Hamilton is a writer who loves to be warm at any time of year. Subsequently, she has invested in a quilted jacket to see her through the spring and summer of 2013.