LADY Likes: Plaid Coats

Can of worms: I bought a bold red and green plaid wool coat at the Metropolitan Vintage show. My friend Sally said, “Oh! Yes, absolutely,” and her friend Lynn said “Oh! Very Love Story! How much? Oh definitely!” So I bought the coat. I put it on, with my hair in a fast ponytail, to make the school run, and I realized on the run one day, I had already owned this coat. When I was maybe 12. I saw it in a B. Altman’s ad in the New York Times, sitting at my mom and dad’s butcher block kitchen table in Connecticut. My mom called and had them send it. It arrived in a big flat B. Altman’s-stamped mailing box and was left aside the back door, leaning against the clapboard, on a carpet of long caramel pine needles, waiting for me after school. I can remember opening the box, the coat buried under meticulous tissue. It became my favorite magic bullet. Mine was navy and green and red, and it made me feel Carrie Donovan-connected cool. Maybe it is the plaid, maybe it is nostalgia for Ice Storm-era Connecticut. But buttoned up, and tied in snug at the waist, this plaid coat and I have chemistry. Coats cover up a multitude of sins. They are the best friends in one’s closet who when chosen correctly are warm and make you look your very best, and at the same time know who you really want to be in your heart of hearts. What coat does that for you? -SRW