You guys know how much I love high heels, shopping and afternoon tea, right? I mean, what could be better than spending the day shopping for new shoes before celebrating with fizz and Victoria sponge? Not much, but sadly this isn’t how I live most of the time – despite what my Instagram account might tell you! Like everyone else, my days are filled with work and my evenings with chores (until 9pm when I must watch an episode of my latest box set – currently obsessed with House of Cards).
Having a border collie means that I also have to fit in a lot of walking (although still less than Mr Man, who walks Jake the Cob for two hours a day). I walk Jake for 40-60 minutes in the evenings, and for two to three hours on a Saturday and again on a Sunday. Walking is good for the legs (although my chipolatas would argue this point) but it does require appropriate attire – warmth and plenty of pockets (for keys, a lead, poop bags, and some change – Jacob and I like a coffee on our Saturday morning walk) are top of the list. Unfortunately, practical doesn’t always mean pretty, but why should active wear mean compromising on style? I mean, Jake gets it – his fur coat is ALWAYS on trend.
As you can imagine, I wear dog walking clothes more often than I wear jeans and, living in a small town where everyone knows everyone means I regularly bump into friends and other dog walkers. As much as I want comfort, I don’t want to be jumping into shrubs to hide from familiar faces anytime I’m out with Jake! That’s why I turned to Cotswold Outdoor.
When I spotted the Castagnola parka on the Cotswold Outdoor website, I knew it would be perfect. Firstly, it ticks all of my practical needs; it’s a good length but isn’t restricting (I like a good stride), it has two deep pockets and an inside pocket, a hood, and, in addition, it’s 75% goose down (guaranteed to keep you warm). Secondly, it looks good; it’s black (natch), it’s slightly A-line and thus nipped in at the waist, and the detachable fur trim adds some much needed glamour, particularly when paired with these mirrored Chanel shades. Simple yet note-worthy extras include the fabric cuffs inside the sleeve (they keep the chill from creeping in) and the easy-to-use zipper (no one likes a tough zip, which only ever results in a nipped chin).
The recent cold snap means that I’ve been wearing this coat a lot. Admittedly, not only as active wear. I’ve worn it to the supermarket, for al fresco hot chocolates, even to work. I know, I know – this is a DOG WALKING COAT people! But…. it’s disguised as a stylish black puffer parka that wouldn’t look out of place in St Moritz. So why not add some fabulous shades, some black Nikes and werq that sports-luxe look? Watch me make like Naomi on the runway the next time you see me power walking on the beach.
Images: Kris Miller