When done badly, shearling can have more than a faint whiff of ‘Del Boy’ about it. But get it right, and a sheepskin coat is a handsome thing. What’s more, designer behemoths from Saint Laurent to Ralph Lauren and Moncler, as well as independent designers like Kent & Curwen, Ami and Richard James, have revised and revisited the material this season, making it modern, lightweight and much easier to wear.
In other words, the bulky Seventies silhouette isn’t your only option this winter. The best designs out there offer a slimmer, layering-friendly approach. Svelte leather bombers are trimmed with shearling collars at Belstaff – perfect for keeping your neck toasty in the cold – while the material is worked into lightweight pieces like the sleek shearling-lined biker’s vest from Brunello Cucinelli (above).
To help the look really take flight, choose your sheepskin wisely and wear it with some of this season’s other must-haves: tonal checked tailoring, corduroy casualwear, chunky boots and, of course, rollnecks – another Derek Trotter favourite that’s back with a vengeance. Tempted to try it? As the man himself famously used to say: ‘He who dares, wins…’
Lead image: Mid-length wool check coat, £1,250, by Corneliani; Copper shearling biker vest, £5,620, by Brunello Cucinelli; Khaki cotton rollneck, £140, by John Smedley; Brown wool trousers, £225, by Gieves & Hawkes
Leather RAF aviator jacket with shearling collar, £1,295, by Belstaff; Knitted cashmere jumper, £430, by Connolly
Herd on the street: More woolly ideas
Corduroy trucker jacket, £495, Kent & Curwen
Suede bomber with shearling collar, £465, Reiss
Patch pocket shearling coat, £2,000, Valstar