Parka minor in cotton no-wax in rye brown

Shipping, worldwide, is always free of charge, orders are always dispatched within three working days, and prices are always the same.

Buying

£440.00

Parka, made in London, with a stay-wax cotton of middling weight (250gsm) from Scotland, and horn and brass components from the Midlands.

Sizing

The parka fits true to size, and is intended to be worn over other layers, so is more spacious than most coats around the shoulder. The mannequin here, who is so standard a 38 he has it stamped on his chest, is wearing size S.

XS S M L XL
To fit chest 36 38 40 42 44
Pit-to-pit 21½ 22½ 23½ 24½ 25½
Back length 29 29¼ 29½ 29¾ 30
Sleeve from   centre-back 35       35½       36       36½       37      

Caring

This is cotton, but with elements like the sleeve-lining and the press-studs which are not. As such, it is best washed by hand in lukewarm water, or dry cleaned. If a machine must be used, a cold wash and no tumble-drying is the only option. Bonus points may be earned by using one of those clever washing potions designed for hydrophobic materials.

Behold "no wax" cotton, which is a middling weight cotton with a stay-wax treatment. It behaves just like waxed cloth in wet weather, but is bone-dry to touch. Also like waxed cloth, it quickly acquires a parchment-like patina — "chalk marks", as some folks call them — from every fold and crease.
The parka minor, despite its name, is a very substantial coat, packed to the gussets with old-school function and feature. It has an extremely high front, which runs right up over the chin, and a wide wrap — not double-breasted, but not far off — intended to shield the wearer from every element.
The hood covers all parts of the head save the face — such as is the least requirement for a hood — and, with its three-panel construction, hugs the crown and curves cleanly around the forehead and temple. It is built to hold its shape when down: standing up, almost, to keep things warm and dry at the nape.
At the back of the hood can be found a small belt, which is useful twofold. Firstly, it gives the hood better grip when the going gets windy. Secondly, it makes the hood adaptable for heads of multiple sizes and shapes.
The parka has a front of four horn buttons — dark in colour and matte in finish. Because each is a thing of nature, they are all unique — differing in shade and markings. The parka has a fly-front, with the buttons hidden away when fastened, and so less likely to snag on brambles and other outdoor perils.
Running around the waist of the parka is a wide belt. It runs beneath the flaps of the pockets, and fastens with a pair of brass sliders: operating in the classic d-ring style.
Belts are nothing if not divisive, of course — some love 'em, some don't — and so this one is designed to be removed without leaving behind any evidence of absence. It runs into a slot hidden beneath the pocket flaps, see, and from that point, runs through a channel that runs around the waist to the other side.
The sleeves of the parka have a couple of darts positioned in the region of the elbow. The sleeve is wide up top, see, so that things may be layered under the coat, but, very much at the same time, it has a tight cuff to hug the wrist and keep out the elements. Darts help with this.
Below the main pockets — which, if it hasn't been mentioned to this point, are particularly deep and, with their envelope-style entry, are secure from rain and straying hands alike — are side-entry pockets. These are positioned at optimal longitude and latitude for the satisfying plunging-in of hands.
The parka has a tight cuff, which when fastened snugly grips the wrist. There are two levels of tightness, the second of which is certifiably circulation-troubling.
One of the other notable aspects of the coat is its construction. It is a hybrid of two sleeves, with the smart lines of an inset sleeve at the front, but, at the back, a roomy raglan sleeve. In practical terms, this frees things up in the upper body; in aesthetic ones, it means a pleasing curve on the shoulder.
Bar-tacks may be found here, there, and everywhere — but in particular at points of stress, such as at the openings of pockets, or here, where the underside of the envelope pocket must grip firmly to the top.
The back panel of the parka is fully lined with a slinky satin, making donning and undonning it a breeze, and helping to reduce friction with whatever is worn underneath. The side and front panels, however, are lined with the outer cloth, making for a redoubtably rain-proof experience across the entire front.
With things so eventful on the outside of the coat, inside, things are clean and simple, with a chest pocket on the left-side as worn.

As worn

Him, here, is 6'1", 12 stone, and as standard a 38 as you could ever meet. The parka he is wearing, then, is an S.

Makers of

The coat is made in north-east London. It is a very specialised skill, assembling coats from heavy cloth, and every reasonable step — and the odd unreasonable step — is to taken to endure things are built to last, from the cutting of the pattern to the work on the machine, but without the results being stiff or bulky.
The cotton comes from Scotland, from a mill on the coast, where the making of heavy, waxed, and otherwise element-proof materials emerged in hand, centuries ago, with local seafaring trades. Industry-strength cottons finished in industry-leading ways is very much the order of the day here.
The brass hardware is made by a foundry in the West Midlands, which was founded in the 1800s. It is the last such foundry in an area once heaving with them. Its sand-casting method — which sees 940°c molten brass poured by hand from a crucible into sand-made moulds — is ancient and infallible.
The horn buttons were cut, shaped, and polished by the last such factory in Britain (now defunct). It was part of a tradition in the Midlands first linked to the meat industry of the 18th century. "It is no easy task," said William Hutton in 1780, "to enumerate the infinite diversity of buttons here in Birmingham."

So they say

Smart simplicity, I would call it, the design of your parka. Beautiful and functional efficiency. It rained one late afternoon. After five minutes, my parka was completely covered in a spray of shiny tiny drops on a dark blue like the sky. People stared at this new attribution to nature. Inside, warm and dry. Outdoors I wear a hat, with not too wide a brim. The hood of the parka is spacious, fitting over my hat, brim and all, without deforming. The hood doesn't make noise: it is quiet itself; in it, sounds are not muffled.

So explained a gentleman in Amsterdam, who purchased the parka in weatherproof ripstop in September 2018.

I've just received the parcel with the very wonderful parka. It is stunning in its design and cloth. It fits so well, and feels incredibly comfortable. I had not imagined such a technical material could feel so pleasantly soft to the touch. The colour is superb, too. And the parka looks great whether carried open or closed — the way the hood and neck fold back. I feel I can now withstand whatever weather our strange climate provides, and look good, at the same time.

Words from a lady in Denmark, who bought a parka in weatherproof ripstop in March 2018.