Friday, January 9, 2015

Canada Goose Victoria Parka

*** See outfit photos with the coat ***

My "heavy duty" coat for the extremely cold winter days is an old Columbia ski jacket from the late 90s (15+ years old!) It's a size medium -- roomy on me then, roomy on me now. Oh, let's buy you one a couple sizes bigger for you to grow into, said my Mom. I guess she never fed me enough, lol. The coat has served me well throughout the years and didn't start to show wear and tear up until about last season. I figured it's probably time for an upgrade. I had my eyes on the LOFT packable puffer jacket as a potential replacement. I loved everything about the jacket online, but not so much in person. The quilting on these puffer jackets made me look top-heavy and too much like the Michelin Man. Not flattering whatsoever, so back it went. For reference, I found the puffer jacket to run small, so size up.

Katherine introduced me to Canada Goose coats with her recent post on the Kensington parka. Intrigued by her rave review and the cool details CG put into their coats (interior shoulder straps!), I started exploring around. My only requirement was to stay far away from quilted patterns. Three styles stood out enough that I took under serious consideration:

1) Trillium - $695 (buy at Bloomingdale's / Nordstrom / NM / backcountry / Shopbop)
The warmest of the three, this coat is rated a 4 on CG's thermal index (1=lightest, 5=warmest). A 4 is supposed to keep you warm even between 5℉ and -13℉. I also liked the longer length, which helps trap in the warmth. This style is also the least fitted of the three.

2) Kensington - $745 (buy at Nordstrom / NM / BG / Bloomingdale's / Shopbop / Moosejaw / Revolve Clothing / backcountry)
This coat is rated a 3 on CG's index, so should keep you warm between 14℉ and -4℉. It's slightly longer than the Trillium and has more hardware details, but the fit is supposed to be slimmer. I tried on sz XS and thought it fit very comfortably with a shirt and sweater underneath without movement restriction (for reference, I'm 5'4", 107 lbs). What I didn't like was how the coat flared out from the waist down (didn't even cinch the drawstring waist), which made my hips look huge. This style is probably best for straight figures. I did like how the front pockets were fully lined (the Victoria only has half-lined pockets).

3) Victoria - $695 (buy at Nordstrom / Bloomingdale's / Saks / Shopbop / Revolve Clothing / NM / BG / SSENSE / Blue & Cream / Intermix)
The coat that I ended up buying and keeping! Like the Kensington, this coat is also rated a 3 on CG's index. Of the three, this one's the shortest in length and hits me about mid-thigh (see photos below). Unlike the previous two, this one has a minimalistic style with a lack of hardware down the front. I really like how the look is streamlined and less "parka-like", which meant I could possibly pull double duty between casual-wear and business-casual looks. I chose black also for its versatility, slimming effect, and because I don't own any coats in this color (I know, I'm an odd one).
Canada Goose Victoria parka with coyote fur trim
[photo above] The hood is supposed to be pulled down lower so the fur "frames" my face, not sitting on top of my head in a crescent shape. Didn't realize this was the best photo until I was editing, sorry.

Like the Kensington parka, the Victoria is also a slim-fit style. I'm wearing sz XS and found the Victoria to be even slimmer fitting than the Kensington in XS. A thin tee, button-up shirt, and sweater is about as much as I can layer underneath while still able to zip up the coat. I considered sizing up to a S but this coat is warm and I can't see myself wearing a sweater all that often with this coat. XS is perfect when unzipped or worn with a long-sleeve underneath. I thought the hips ran narrow compared to the torso, though there is a back vent and the front can also be partially unzipped if movement is an issue.

The Victoria comes in sizes XXS - XL. I saw a couple customer reviews referencing XXS but did not see it as an option anywhere, so figured it may just be that elusive unicorn. Lo and behold, backcountry has XXS in stock in navy! For ladies smaller than me (ie: J.Crew 00P), the Victoria in XXS should work for you.
Canada Goose Victoria parka with coyote fur trim

I bought this coat just in time as a cold front swept through. The morning I took these photos, it was 11℉ outside (felt like 1℉)! I was completely warm in my coat and extra layers and didn't feel the need to fast-forward through my photo session, just as CG's thermal index advertized. This is about as cold as it gets for DC winters though, and these type of days are rare. My car's thermometer was reading temps in the 20s today and I didn't bother turning on the heat. I stayed toasty in my coat driving to and from work.
black parka, striped sweater, chambray shirt, gray gloves

For the first time in a long time, DH gave his approval on my clothing choice, hahaha. He remarked on the slim fit and thought it looked nice on me, despite it being a puffer jacket. Another thing he noticed right away was the CG patch on my left arm. He thought the combination of the coat's minimalistic look plus the bright arm patch made it look like a uniform, like I was in the Chinese army. His analogies are so random, but never fails to make me laugh. If I had a choice, I'd prefer the patch be placed somewhere less noticeable, too, but it's not a deal-breaker.
Canada Goose Victoria parka with coyote fur trim

In conclusion, I highly recommend the Victoria parka for its practicality, style, and warmth. CG is a new brand to me, so I'm not well-versed in their pricing. According to Katherine, their products are rarely included in promos and sales. If they are, I would guess it'd happen in the summer. When I looked at various stores' inventory, it seems like stock is low and available sizes are random, which makes sense as we're in the middle of winter. Beware of counterfeits though; if the price is too good to be true, it's probably is.

On a different and final note, have to thank Jean and her Hunter Tour boots review because now I can channel my favorite dog in the entire world, Boo!
black parka, striped sweater, chambray shirt, gray gloves, red rain boots
sunglasses: Walmart aviator (similar) 
lips: MAKE silk lipstick cream in taffy (sold here)
coat: Canada Goose Victoria parka (sold at Nordstrom / Bloomingdale's / Saks / Shopbop / Revolve Clothing / NM / BG / SSENSE / Blue & Cream / Intermix)
sweater: Ann Taylor striped mock neck (sold here - $22)
gloves: Everlane the classic glove (sold here)
socks: Forever 21 (similar; similar)
boots: Hunter original Tour packable rain boots (sold at Bloomingdale's / Victoria's Secret / Zappos)

12 comments:

  1. I recently bought the Canada Goose Mystique parka for my cold commute and have to say it was worth every penny. It has a rating of 5 and I only wear a long shirt underneath, no need for layers. My commute is not so terrible anymore :)

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    1. I'm not familiar with the Mystique so had to google. Blake Lively sure does make a long down coat stylish! I'm so glad to hear your commute is tolerable now. There's nothing worse than having to wake up in the mornings when it's cold and still dark out. Perhaps I'm still in the honeymoon phase with my coat, but I haven't minded waking up with the alarm the last few days, all because I was looking forward to wearing my coat, LOL. Let's see how long this lasts.

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  2. Cee, I have to admit, I had a little chuckle when I first saw the title of this post. When I was living in DC, it would have never crossed my mind to even consider buying a Goose just because the winters are so mild (I know the last few days have been crazy cold, though! But as you said, those days are very rare). Even some people would say the Goose is a bit of overkill for typical Toronto winters unless you spend an extraordinary amount of time outdoors. So I had a bit of laugh just because I realized even though I lived in DC for almost four years, I guess I still have a different way of dealing with cold weather being a Canadian despite the fact that I feel like I haven't yet re-acclimated to the winters.

    I actually invested in a Goose coat last year (the Kensington--I personally don't find it flares out too much and I'm sensitive to that sort of thing), and only because I knew I had to spend more time outdoors with the new puppy--I had no idea that this polar vortex was actually a thing. The Kensington is just fine for me even in the most brutal days here in T.O., and I would even try avoid wearing it if could and wear my "lighter" parka for anything above freezing. I think if I wore my Goose on regular winter days in DC, I would be in a constant state of sweating! Haha.

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    1. Cher, no offense taken at all! I had a good laugh when I read your comment because I've been in your shoes -- when Californians and Floridians talk about needing to wear a heavy coat when it's 50 out! I guess it's true that the body builds up tolerance over time. I have a feeling if I wore my Victoria parka on the coldest day in T.O., I wouldn't be able to stand the cold (and both our parkas have the same rating).

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    2. bahahahaha! 50s is cold!! I like a constant 78! :P

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    3. LOL Ping! Point proven, Cher ;)

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  3. Thanks for the review Cee! I have been debating whether to get one of these for the NY winter...like you, my interest was definitely piqued after reading Katherine's review. I was wondering about the Victoria coat, do you know if it comes in XXS? And would sizing down help with it having a slimmer look, since you had mentioned it was the least fitted of the 3. I'm pretty sensitive to the cold so I need all the warmth I can get! Thanks again girl :)

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    1. Celena! I'm assuming you're asking about the Trillium coat with the least fitted reference? Yes, it does come in sz XXS! The only place I see with that size currently available is at backcountry in red. NY prob averages 10 degrees colder than DC (I think?), so I think a Trillium with the 4 rating would be a great choice.

      I would think XXS is proportionally smaller overall than a XS, instead of say... just a shorter length. So yes, if you can fit into a XXS comfortably, it should help for a slimmer silhouette. CG also recently released new sizes called the "fusion fit", which is targeted towards Asians. I'm not sure if the Trillium will be offered in the new sizes, but it would be worth looking into.

      Good luck! (Would love to hear what you end up with!)

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    2. Thanks a lot Cee! Yes, sorry, I had meant Trillium. The fushion fit has piqued my interest. If I end up getting one, I'll def let you know :)

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  4. Have you tried the rossclair? I am debating between that or the Victoria?

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    1. Hey! I have not tried the Rossclair. Do let me know if you end up giving that style a try :)

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I'd love to hear from you. Constructive criticisms welcome!

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