Trendy Casual Classic & K/R raincoat

Hello, Lovelies! 

I have been a bit scarce here due to very heavy work commitments and travel in the past few weeks. But now it's catch up time! And none too soon, because I have a packing capsule coming up for my month long retreat in Banff. I leave on Thursday. WHOOT!!

First, here's my interpretation of Angie's trendy casual classic, with: 

Zara pointed toe ink blue booties
GAP Really skinny ponte pants (3 years and still going strong!)
MK belt
Land's End Mariner sweater
Lucky Brand Leather Sleeved denim jacket. 

A bit dark for spring maybe, but it's still pretty cool here. 

Next up, a K/R raincoat. I'm headed for Banff and needed a waterproof breathable coat that would work both on Calgary jaunts (and for future rainy days at home) and in the mountains. This is the North Face Grace. It is hardly a thing of high fashion and beauty, but it's not too bad. 

Pro: Fits well, comfortable, navy blue, hood inside collar, versatile, good pockets, logo is not obvious. (I can wear it over a blazer no problem, so layering is fine as well). 

Con: For some reason it's not a two -way zipper. Material feels a bit "crinkly." Belt is not the greatest.

I think on balance it's a keep, but maybe I will check reviews just in case. And if anyone has this coat, I'd love to hear your experience. 

This post is also published in the youlookfab forum. You can read and reply to it in either place. All replies will appear in both places.


  • Jewell replied 6 years ago

    Great interpretation of the trendy casual classic ensemble!

    The rain coat looks a bit crinkly to me, but I like everything else about it. I'm no expert on rain coats and don't have one myself, so I'm sure there are much better judges here than me. For all I know, they're supposed to be crinkly. Any YAY for a month long retreat- woot woot!

  • Laura (rhubarbgirl) replied 6 years ago

    Suz, glad to 'see' you. I like the jacket from the photos. I think the color and the fit are lovely. Only you can say whether the fabric will bug you. Congrats on the upcoming retreat!

  • Joy replied 6 years ago

    Your trendy casual classic interpretation is sharp!
    I really like the rain coat shape, color and fit on you. Be sure that you are ok with the crinkle though. I had to have a similar coat a couple of years ago for Alaska and settled for crinkle due to lack of time to look, but am very sorry. I hate that coat for the noise it makes. It is EB and was supposed to breathe but does not. A good rain coat is harder to find than I thought it would be. I just bought a cream one at REI made by Columbia that is not as noisy. REI had a good non-crinkly black one (their brand) but I wanted something other than black this time. Good luck and yay for Banff!

  • kellygirl replied 6 years ago

    Love your take on the blog post. You look terrific! So polished and modern. I like the coat a lot. It looks sporty and cool. I find a zipper much better with rainy cold weather--I find trenches too fiddly when it's cold and rainy. Seems like a great coat for your climate especially.

  • replied 6 years ago

    Fabulous trendy casual outfit! I like the look of the raincoat a lot, but only you know how you feel about the fabric. I think as Joy said it might get annoying with crinkle sounds.

  • carter replied 6 years ago

    Love the trendy classic look. The raincoat looks great in the pictures. The collar is fabulous, and the fit looks perfect.

    Now, can we talk about the bag...details, please. Is it black or navy and white or cream?

  • Angie replied 6 years ago

    You nailed the ensemble YOUR way too, Gorgeous Suz. Not that I expected anything else of course. 

    From the photos, my thumbs are up on the raincoat. Super colour and fit. Only you can accurately assess the fabric. xo

  • Suz replied 6 years ago

    Carter, this bag is Danier (what else?) and was one of their less expensive offerings last year -- I think it cost us $39 or sale, or something like that. It's black and white, but works just as well with navy. I don't know if they offer anything similar this year. This was an in store impulse gift from Mr. Suz when he was buying himself a leather jacket. (Lucky me!) I use it a lot in the transitional seasons because it's dark and light at the same time. 

    Thanks for the thoughts on the coat. It doesn't really "sound" crinkly, but it has a bit of that crinkly feel, you know? (You do know. I know you know.) But as far as I can tell, they pretty much ALL do. I tried on a few by other companies and it was the same. 

    I do like the collar on this one a lot. There's a hood in there, of course. But I like that it doesn't have to show. 

  • Suz replied 6 years ago

    Ooh - thanks, Angie! Crossposted. 

    Yes, I thought the fit was pretty darned good for a gear jacket, which is why I decided to take it in the end. The fabric might "settle" a bit once I wear it, too, I suppose. 

  • merwoman replied 6 years ago

    Love your outfit in pic 1 - effortless chic! And we all know that effortless takes effort!

    Raincoats are hard to find. I like how you've styled this one in pic 4 the best.  It seems that it has a whitish lining - this brightens up your face, Fit looks good and it has a hood in case you get caught without a brolly. If it's reasonably priced, I'd keep it.

  • Angie replied 6 years ago

    Exactly. It's a great contender. xo

  • Dee replied 6 years ago

    I really like the coat. The fit is perfect on you. With all our crazy Calgary weather lately, I'm sure you'll get good use out of in your trip. Have fun in Banff (a whole month? I'm super jealous)!

  • Sharon replied 6 years ago

    I think the coat looks fantastic - really smart and stylish and not like gear at all. And of course the ensemble looks great on you and it strikes me as being very in tune with your usual style. 

  • rachylou replied 6 years ago

    Suz, you've got trendy casual tied up with a pretty bow (so to speak).

    The raincoat is always tricky. It looks good, seems functional. I do personally like a two-way zipper; makes a huge difference to me. Clothing 'noise' is also a bit of an issue for me. Sometimes fashion is enough for me to overlook - but probably not in a downpour.

  • Lyn D. replied 6 years ago

    I really like the rain-coat Suz- functional and great colour and shape!
    As someone mentioned on my trendy-classic take post, it is so nice during Autumn/Spring  to be able to wear similar outfits :)

  • Kiwichik replied 6 years ago

    Love the classic ensemble and I think the coat is a keeper - looks good on you (or perhaps more accurate to say you make it look good).

  • Transcona Shannon replied 6 years ago

    Great casual ensemble! I really quite like the raincoat. The fit is spot on.

  • Suz replied 6 years ago

    This was definitely a case where trying on in real life helped. I tried the "what's my size" thing on their website and they'd have put me in the small. This one is the xs and it's plenty roomy for layering and movement. 

    I'm glad the coat meets YLF approval. For a gear coat I think it's pretty good looking. 

  • Makrame replied 6 years ago

    This is a really fashionable raincoat!  Hope the crinkle is not too bad.

    Great take on the trendy casual!

  • Lantana replied 6 years ago

    Oooh, yummy yum yum.
    I have a mariner sweater but I will need a much cooler day to wear it with the jacket. It is still in the upper seventies here.
    Suz,I envy your lovely neck and being able to wear collars as in #3

  • Lisa replied 6 years ago

    I can't speak for this specific coat, but I've been pretty pleased with Northface coats in the past.  And fun twist on the classic outfit.  This outfit looks like it is seasonless and can work for both fall and spring.

  • Elizabeth P replied 6 years ago

    Suz, haven't read the replies, but did you check out the Stella Grace jacket? It's much more like a trench, yet still goretex. I almost bought it last year, but they didn't have my size in the store, so I waited, and the season passed... But it strikes me as the perfect trench. I don't get non waterproof rain coats, not living in halifax! The Grace always struck me as a more gearish fabric ( which I didn't need, I have my mec goretex).

  • Sveta replied 6 years ago

    Trust our Suz to turn this casual ensemble into the outfit worthy of the Urban Prince! :-)
    I also think the raincoat is darn good on you but as Angie said only you can assess the fabric - but it looks great and not-too-gearish!

  • Aubergine replied 6 years ago

    Have fun on the retreat! The jacket looks entirely non-gearish. Definitely worth a keep. And your version of the outfit formula really feels like a classic Suz outfit.

  • Beth Ann replied 6 years ago

    Love the ensemble AND the raincoat.  The blue has depth, and much more life than black.  It's sleek enough and practical enough.  I must admit, however, that I'm a fabric snob (except for polyester, which I allow, being raised in the 70's).  I might not like that "crinkle factor" either.

    I was in Banff at age 12.  I still sigh when I think about Lake Louise.

  • Mia replied 6 years ago


    I have this coat, I am on the "wet coast" so mine gets a lot of use and I pack for travel sometimes as well because so light and good to layer under. Not the most stylish coat in my closet but I highly recommend it. The hood is a good feature. I like the crispness and it does soften over time. Love the navy on you!

  • shevia replied 6 years ago

    Your outfit with and without the new trench looks fantastic. I actually really like the sporty stylish vibe of the trench on you. And I think you will get lots of use out of it. Great black and white bag from Mr. Suz too!

  • torontogirl replied 6 years ago

    Terrific - as always :)

    I've got to start looking at Danier more often!!

    And love the coat - looks great to me.

  • Suz replied 6 years ago

    Thanks, all - and especially Mia, for weighing in! I am really glad to hear that it holds up to its promise of being waterproof. I have two nicer trenches for regular wear and showers (they are water repellant but not water proof), but this is more for travel and possible downpours. It is exceptionally light so will pack really well. And if the fabric relaxes a bit, that is a bonus. 

  • sarah replied 6 years ago

    I love the raincoat, actually. I think it looks great on you. And for it to be truly waterproof, it's hard to avoid some crinkle.

  • Jeanie replied 6 years ago

    I can't get past that you are going on a month long retreat in Banff.  I must find a life that includes a month long retreat in Banff!!  I honeymooned there and I long for its beauty.  Sigh.

    I think the coat is a perfect travel coat that will keep you dry and stylish.  Can't wait to see your travel capsule!

  • rae replied 6 years ago

    Looks wise the raincoat looks pretty darn good! The outfit would not feel out of place in a catalogue for Toast, provided you were wandering off in some remote and slightly eerie landscape.

  • krishnidoux replied 6 years ago

    Hi Suz, you look wonderful and polished in this outfit. 

    I too have a very similar, earlier version of this NF raincoat (mine is black). And mine is not lined. I must admit it has been serving me despite its drawbacks: crinkly, and on me the XS is very fit, maybe a bit too fit for a bulkier sweater underneath, which I always need when wearing it since it's not lined and not very warm.  The other drawback is that the belt is very short. Yours look a bit longer. I like to tie my belt, like you, rather than fasten in into the snap buttons;  however a shortish belt means that unless I tie it really tight it will come undone. 

    Despite these drawbacks, as I said, the coat has been useful mainly because of its cut and because it's a nice "feminine" alternative to gear on yucky days. 

    I love the color on yours, very classic, and it will go with a lot of color schemes too. I can see black, taupe, green, red, pink... AND it suits you perfectly. You look lovely in it. 

  • unfrumped replied 6 years ago

    Stripes make outfit more springy- very fine.
    I love the fit of the coat- if it layers also, it's very flattering for gear , so seems a keep for a travel capsule and your seasonal wear.

  • Karie replied 6 years ago

    Your trendy casual outfit looks fantastic - I know it's hard to look springy when there's no spring in the weather! I really like the raincoat on you, but I know what you mean about the crinkly fabric. The crinkly fabric on one of my raincoats annoys me because it always looks wrinkled. But mine is definitely a "gear" coat so I don't mind it too much, if it was a dressier looking coat I probably would mind it more. 
    The coat does look beautiful on you - if you didn't have your upcoming retreat, would you still keep it, or would you keep looking? 

  • Suz replied 6 years ago

    Karie, that's a great question. I might keep looking for an "even better" one (i.e. not crinkly at all, but still waterproof.) I do intend it to be gear (it has to work as gear) but I also want it for travel of various kinds -- some that would take me into the city. So far this is the best combination type coat I've found. I did try on a few others as well. I tried a Lole jacket that had beautiful fabric and a high quality zipper, but it had a fussy belt and looked more like yoga clothes than a real coat. And I tried another one that had better fabric but the fit and style were not as good on me and it was much more obviously "gear"-like. 

    Hmmm. Worth thinking about. It's not an absolute necessity for me to have this now, perhaps -- I could possibly buy something at my destination. 

  • Janet replied 6 years ago

    I love your outfit!

    As for the raincoat, I think it looks terrific. Color and fit are so perfect for you. I think a little "crinkle" is natural in a water-resistant fabric, but only you can tell if it bothers you or not. My Burberry trench makes a subtle swishy noise in motion, but that doesn't bother me.

  • Suz replied 6 years ago

    This one is actually waterPROOF, so it's a true gear coat. And those ones tend to be the most "crinkly." My water resistant trenches (Theory and London Fog) don't have that quality. But this coat is basically a piece of nylon, so of course it's going to crinkle a bit.  

  • harmonica replied 6 years ago

    I wish I had a raincoat like that! :-) Love your outfit too! Great bag

  • Alassë replied 6 years ago

    You look great, and so does the coat! Great find in your colors.

  • Eliza replied 6 years ago

    Suz- like the shape, style and color of the coat on you. The fit looks perfect. For a coat to look that good and yet function as gear is a rarity. For travel, it could do everything from business to site-seeing to dinner effortlessly. If the fabric works and the zipper issue is manageable, you have a lot of flattery going on in with it.

    Have a great time in Banff.

  • rabbit replied 6 years ago

    I think the coat looks great.  I don't have a North Face raincoat, but I have had some of their other gear and it's truly bomb-proof as gear,  lasts for decades.  I think if you also keep all your tags and receipts and something goes wrong with it in the future the Northface will sometimes replace things.

  • pil replied 6 years ago

    Your outfit is perfection - as usual! And that 'gear' coat looks very chic on you with the popped collar and belt.

  • Suz replied 6 years ago

    Rabbit, that's brilliant information. I am going to hang onto everything then. I love the versatility of this style so even though it's crinkly I think I will keep. :)

  • fuzzylogic replied 6 years ago

    That Parker/raincoat is definitely a keeper! I love the collar all the way up- tres chic! Perhaps the 'crinkle' will add an extra dimension when styling?

  • Golden replied 6 years ago

    I love your raincoat! My raincoat is a bit crinkly but it doesn't bother
    Me. Your outfit is cute too! Only you can determine if you like the coat but the fit and the color are fantastic for you!. Enjoy your time on holiday!

  • Gracie replied 6 years ago

    A little late to the party but wanted to say I think you look smashing in that raincoat and the fab interpretation of the ensemble. You had me at "hood inside the collar" I love coats with hoods as I avoid umbrellas at all cost. The color looks terrific and I really like it the look with the coat's neck up and tall too.

  • rabbit replied 6 years ago

    Here's where it talks a bit about the lifetime warranty:

  • greycat6 replied 6 years ago

    Chiming in on the NF lifetime warranty claim. 

    My 11 year old recently broke the zipper fob on his NF winter jacket which was purchased at NAS two seasons back. Nordstrom could have done the repair if the jacket was in season, since it was a winter jacket they did not have the proper zipper in stock so they referred us to our local NF store.  We took it to the store which sent it away to the factory repair shop.  Voila! four weeks later his jacket was shipped directly to our home with a brand new zipper - no charge.  Hopefully, he will not outgrow it before next fall!

  • Freckles replied 6 years ago

    Love your outfit!  The raincoat seems to check most of the boxes and the ones it doesn't check might let up (the softening).  You could always replace the zipper to make it a two way if in the end it bothers you a lot but the crinkle fabric turns out not to bother you.  Glad you heard from a couple who own the coat.  Waterproof is vital in some instances and this certainly doesn't look to be all gear.

  • ElleH replied 6 years ago

    I love your version of Angie's ensemble & the raincoat looks good for the needs you mentioned. Have a great trip.

  • CocoLion replied 6 years ago

    The outfit looks like the perfect FFBO for transitional weather.  I like how you polished it up by wearing ponte instead of denim bottoms.  I'm another yes vote for the coat, it looks much more chic than the usual North Face jacket.  The lace of a 2-way zipper is baffling though, I thought they practically trademarked that feature, along with Velcro wrist closures.

    ETA -- and if you keep it you are supporting a good company.  TNF has sponsored my brother's climbing career for over 20 years and given him a real job (head of the athlete sponsorship program).

  • Deborah replied 6 years ago

    Love the coat and your outfit is so fab! Of course I am going to love the dark colours for Spring!!

  • Style Fan replied 6 years ago

    Suz I love your raincoat.  Looks great on you.  I have a Burberry trench and a sturdy gear raincoat (I can't remember the brand).  It is hard to get something stylish in gear.  My gortex coat crinkles but I don't think it makes a sound.  It is the type of fabric.  It certainly is not as stylish as yours. 

  • Elizabeth P replied 6 years ago

    Still think you should check out the Stella Grace...

  • Suz replied 6 years ago

    Thanks, Elizabeth....

    I think it is heavier weight, correct? 

    I need more of a shell vs. a coat. For in-town, I have two great (and more fashionable) trenches. This is just for the gear/ travel capsule. Not for wearing much in my regular life, if you know what I am saying. So light has real advantages for me. I do like the Stella Grace....but don't have access to one before I go. However, I could return this coat and simply buy one in Banff as needed (or if needed). There are hundreds of gear stores there. 

  • Elizabeth P replied 6 years ago

    Gotcha.  I think it might be heavier, I can't remember.  The store that I had looked at them in here closed, so it's been a while since I compared.  What liked about it vs the Grace was that you didn't see the "geary" light inside of the hood, which seemed to casualize it so much.  Because the style of it is so much more stylish than most gear coats!  Sounds like it will be perfect for you then.

  • jackiec replied 6 years ago

    New here, chiming in :)

    I love the raincoat! I think it looks sharp! You'd fit right in here in Vancouver ;)

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