A design that spans decades and an unmistakable icon of British style. Explore the evolution of the trench coat through the Burberry archive – from wartime protection and royal status to reimagined runway silhouettes.
Thomas Burberry invented weatherproof gabardine in 1879, and so the trench coat’s tale began. This season, 140 years on, and over 100 years since the first trench was made, a myriad of runway designs sit alongside timeless heritage shapes.
The epitome of a classic yet contemporary design, it was during the 1960s that the trench coat’s most iconic features, the D-ring, storm flap and epaulettes, were propelled beyond function to become statements of fashion.
An international icon of style, British to its core. Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s cousin, Lord Lichfield, photographed trench coat campaigns during the 1970s.
Throughout the late 20th century, designs were updated, refined and refreshed. Shoulder lines were exaggerated, waists dramatically cinched, and fabrics evolved beyond gabardine.
(Images 8, 9, 10 and 11 credit: Lord Lichfield.)