Trench Quest, Part I: Burberry Petites Double-Breasted Trench

This month marks the beginning of my quest for the perfect, classic Burberry trench. Bear with me if I seem to be nit-picking in the reviews, but I’ve splurged before on items that I wasn’t completely satisfied with, and I want to make sure that doesn’t happen again.

The first candidate is this trench from Nordstrom’s anniversary sale in 2P, their smallest size. This coat got nothing but rave 5-star reviews from shoppers (“classic” …”gorgeous” …”slim”..), so my hopes were high. I was also curious about Burberry’s petite sizing – a Nordies exclusive – but the regular Burberry store does such a good job with alterations that petite sizing isn’t a huge deal to me. 

Coat: Burberry Double-Breasted Trench sz 2P ($895 was on sale for $550)
Jeans: H&M; kids sz 11/12
Heels: Aldo sz 35

Material: When I opened the box, my face fell. The material was reminiscent of waterproof windbreaker fabric, instead of the classic cotton trench material I had expected. Upon reading the label I saw that it was 100% polyester. After feeling the slightly shiny material, I already knew this coat was going back.



Style/Cut: The second thing I noticed was a huge “Burberry Brit” tag slapped inside the coat. This is their casual wear line that is supposedly more “contemporary” and “cheaper” than their classic Burberry London label (sources: Racked & CEO letter). Now why would Nordstrom not mention the Brit part in the title or description like they did for their other Brit merchandise?

The style of this coat was classic enough, but it definitely wasn’t cut slim like reviewers suggested. I also felt that the nylon-y material made it drape and crinkle in a way that just wasn’t  flattering.

Fit: Although the length and sleeve length were good, the overall fit was big. There was ample room at the chest/underarm area, and the bottom flared out too much after the waist was cinched.There also were no defined shoulders (raglan-style sleeves). If I were to keep this coat, both the sleeves and torso would need to be slimmed.

Measurements: Sz 2 Petite measured 18″ across the underarms, 16″ across the waist, 22″ across the bottom opening, 22″ sleeve length, 6″ sleeve width, and 15″ approximate shoulder width.

Trying it on with flats:
Shapeless when un-belted:

Verdict: A definite no. My aversion to the fit and material must be a personal thing, because everyone else who reviewed this coat on Nordstrom online had nothing but praise…? The boyfriend initially likened the appearance and sound of this jacket to a “garbage bag,” but we agreed it looked better under natural lighting.

Redeeming qualities of this trench: petite-friendly length, wonderful details (engraved buttons, shoulder epaulettes, buckles and check under the collar), plus a removable wool liner that zips in and out. From my experience, a removable liner is worth about $200 extra.

Two other petites also ordered this coat – hopefully SeeJessicaGo and PetiteXXS will have their own photos and thoughts to add.

On a separate note, I was browsing online and noticed that petite-favorite Gap Inc. is offering trench coats at three very different price points. From highest-priced to lowest:
Banana Republic Classic Trench in XXSP, Black or Khaki 
(now WHY would they exclude this slate gray color from petites?)
Gap Classic Trench in XSP, Pecan color
Old Navy Long Trench in XSP, available in 5 colors

Readers – will you guys be trying any of the trench coats above? All three of these stores have great coupons & shipping codes from time to time. I think I may try the BR one because the quality looks the best by far, plus it’s the only one available in size XXS petite.

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  1. On second glance, I want to note a couple other things for readers who are considering the BR trench as a more economical option than a Burberry. Like I said above, the sizing is quite good re. shoulders, torso, body length, for a 5 foot woman, but I will still need to get the sleeves shortened if I don't want to tuck them under forever.
    Also, this is a true trench with the storm flap, epaulettes, d-rings on belt, even the throat latch under the collar! I was really surprised to see how authentic the design of this trench was. For $160 CAD, a pretty good buy!

    Posted 7.24.16 Reply
  2. Thank you for the great advice on buying a trench as a petite! I just purchased the xxsp khaki trench from BR, and I think the fit is pretty good. I am 5 feet, 100 lbs for others who might be interested.

    Posted 6.20.16 Reply
  3. Rosie wrote:

    Hello, PAG! I just snagged this from Nordstrom Rack online for $350. Since it was a popback for the Rack, I decided the best strategy was buy now, decide & return later.

    Suddenly I remembered that you had reviewed a Burberry trench. So I looked back at your blog now to see if it was the same one you reviewed and… uh-oh. There might be a return trip to Nordies in my future. $350 is still a lot for polyester, but on the upside I am a true PXS (not a PXXS), so it might fit well. I'll give an update when it gets here!

    Posted 2.5.11 Reply
  4. Anonymous wrote:

    Thanks for good stuff

    Posted 10.19.10 Reply
  5. Annapurna…how sweet of you! Thanks so much for the offer! I think I may order one come this winter if they have those gorgeous colors again. Also Ping (allaboutfashionstuff) ordered a 0p to review and she is my size, so I'm super eager to see.

    Debbie & lovesCardigans – thank you ladies for the suggestions! Lovescardigans – I have a coat too from the outlet and it is a waste…bought it due to the "sale" price which is the worst mindset. Won't happen again!

    Anon@3:07 – I really don't know, I havent' tried either on I don't think. Sorry I can't be of more help.

    CanadianPetite – thanks for the heads up. I just tried the BR one and was quite disappointed!

    Posted 8.6.10 Reply
  6. Annapurna wrote:

    Jean – I own a JCrew Lady Day coat in petite 0 – you are smaller than me I think (I am 5-2, 97 pounds with a 32B chest). The P0 is tight on the bust and the sleeves are a tad short for me but otherwise it fits like a glove on me (which is why I think it might be big on you). You are welcome to come over to the North End and try it on any time you like!

    Posted 8.5.10 Reply
  7. Debbie wrote:

    I agree on the Burberry trench. I tried it on in-store. I am much bigger than you and the 2P was a good size for me so I can't believe it would have fit you nicely. I didn't buy it because I didn't like the material.

    I did, however, buy the ruffly trench coat from Anthropologie which i would not call "classic" because of the ruffles but I do like that one alot and I am keeping it. It's the Clinton trench, all sold out now of petite sizes except 12P. I have a 2P and I think it is possible the 0P may have worked for you. Good luck on your search!

    Posted 8.4.10 Reply
  8. Anonymous wrote:

    So, which is a better fit for petite? The Harbourne or the Ledstone?

    Posted 8.4.10 Reply

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