I noticed that my Collectif Pearl coat review from last year was starting to get traffic again, which makes sense – it’s cold out there! But seeing that post pop up in my stats again made me want to revisit my initial review, now that I’ve worn the coat through the end of a winter and into a second. Get my full, updated thoughts on if this coat is really the holy grail of vintage-inspired outerwear after the jump.
Honestly, part of the reason that I wanted to look at the Pearl again is because I was definitely a bit annoyed when I wrote the initial review. I had a bad international shipping experience with the coat and a not-great customer service experience after, and after a long summer with the coat packed away, I started to wonder if I’d been overly harsh out of irritation.
In short: no, I wasn’t.
Re-reading my initial review, I have the same complaints that I did last year. My biggest gripe is that the sleeves are very tight. This may not be a problem for smaller sized ladies, but I feel like my arms are pretty much in proportion to the rest of my body, and the sleeves are tight enough to restrict my movement even with only a single layer underneath (not great in a winter coat). It’s definitely the lining that’s restrictive too, it hasn’t loosened up with wear. And honestly, even a year later I’m still annoyed that a) this coat seriously stained the seats of my car and other items of clothing and b) the pockets were both split open at the bottoms and customer service, to be totally frank, kind of blew me off about it. These are not issues that I want to see when I’m paying $200+ for a piece.
But I also have the same pros as last year. The Pearl is definitely warm. It’s not a parka, but in my experience (as someone who lives where real temps are regularly under 10 degrees Farenheit) this is about as warm as you’re going to get from a fashion coat. The way that the oversized fur collar hooks together to create a nice little wrap is ingenious. And it’s so, so beautiful. It really is a showstopper, and I don’t know that I’ve ever worn this coat without getting complimented on it. I feel like a frigid Russian princess when I wear it. It’s really the fur at the bottom, in my opinion, that takes it to the next level. It swings beautifully when you move.
Not pros or cons but general Pearl coat advice: this lady is big and heavy. I actually have to kind of shuffle it into submission when I’m driving, and I don’t even bother wearing it to the theater or anywhere that I’d have to try to compress it into a seat somehow. If you like to travel light and aren’t prepared to have your coat flopping all over like a dramatic lady on a fainting couch, this may not be the coat for you. It has also broken cheap hangers in my closet.
I would say, in the end, that I have kind of a love/hate relationship with the Pearl coat. Are there improvements I would like to see made to it that significantly impact my enjoyment of the coat? Yes. Do I kind of want to buy another one in a different color even though I know I’ll just be annoyed at the same problems? …also yes.