From Balmoral to Brick Lane, the quintessentially British Barbour has become a national treasure. And now, the traditional uniform of Tories, toffs and Shoreditch Twats has found it's way into the wardrobe of a mid-life stylist. Vintage faux fur coats are all well and good, but they don't have the technical ability of my lovely new quilted jacket - and at my age, a breeze around the buttonholes could be fatal. I'm too old to be cold. My teenage self would be appalled, but at least I've opted for a chic navy blue biker-style and not a waxy green number, you know, like the one worn by HRH and the Countryside Alliance.
Not an attempt to look posh. Or ironic. Keeping up with the Camerons? We're not all in this together. My purchase was driven purely by practicality. With a commute to work involving a twenty-minute bike ride to the train station, I want to stay warm and dry, and look relatively respectable when I reach the other end. I want to look warm and cool. And this Barbour is much cheaper than a Belstaff. Sorry, my official photographer was busy, hence the still life picture. You'll just have to imagine the quilted jacket with navy trousers and brogues - oh no, am I turning into Sloane Ranger? Make that one without a trust fund or an SW7 postcode. Nah. Now that Ines de la Fressange has embraced the hunting/shooting/fishing vibe, (see below) I think I can get away with it.