Spring is light coat season. Wool cloth feels too warm and waxed cotton too bulky or heavy. The classics for spring are trenchcoats or slipons made of cotton Gabardine. Unfortunately they don’t offer very effective protection against rain. Much better are coats made of Etaproof, a water-repellent cotton weave from Switzerland, for example the coat from the German brand Amity Jackets pictured below.
Etaproof is made by Stotz & Co. KG in Switzerland although waterproof cotton fabrics were invented in England in the 1930s and marketed as Ventile. This name is still being used by English manufacturers and designers because of its positive image, even though it is not made in the UK anymore and they have all been using the Swiss fabric for decades. Etaproof is waterproof because long staple fibers are spun and twisted to create the yarn which is then woven to a high density.
Lightweight coats are also made from a range of synthetic performance fabrics. Some traditionalists still shun these fabrics, but most men appreciate their lightness, breathability and the fact that they are really waterproof. Coats from these materials can easily be folded or rolled up and packed in your handluggage. The only drawback is that these fabrics are rather delicate, you must take care not to get caught somewhere and avoid tears.
Stylewise we usually deal with variations of the familiar themes trenchcoat and slipon, either with Raglan shoulders or set in sleeves. Some hooded coats are inspired by the parka, a good option for men who like to wear dufflecoats in winter. A hood comes handy during a rain shower and it saves you carrying a hat or cap for the event.