All puffed up: It's time to pick up a puffa

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

Snuggly, squishy and suddenly cool again. You'll be glad of all that padding when the temperature drops, says cosy convert Harriet Walker

For many years, the puffa jacket has had several less than fashionable – or flattering – connotations: the Michelin man; small-fry football managers who can't afford a nice sheepskin; the "Brilliant!" man from The Fast Show. And during one brief, wintry phase in 1998, Scary Spice Mel B – accessorised with a bikini top and some combat trousers.

But forget what you thought you knew. Because the puffa is a big trend this winter – and what better news as you sit at your desk almost too frightened to set off home because it's so darn cold and your smart tailored number feels a bit thin? What you need, my friend, is a duvet coat.

On the catwalk at Burberry, they came in radiant colours, nipped in and trench-ified for a slick and surprisingly svelte take on the classic.

Christopher Kane's longer-length version avoids all dubious Nineties-isms by being printed with the recurring red moiré print that characterised his acclaimed autumn collection.

And at hip London duo Peter Pilotto too, puffa jackets were printed with the pair's signature digitised prints, given exaggerated collars and cuffs – they were treated, in fact, like any other item of clothing upon which a designer can make their mark or interpret in a new way.

All too often messing with a puffa feels like sacrilege – like the creation of one of those horrible high-end, leisurewear hybrids – but in fact this winter's new crop of padded jackets benefit from having been styled a little, rather than just taken straight from the football pitch.

Colours are infinite and only to be encouraged – the rash of slate grey and navy versions should be reason enough to look beyond black.

Puffas this season are surprisingly pretty. It may sound crazy, but just try it. Similarly, modern wadding is less cumbersome and restrictive, and the puffa is now padded with an eye on a more feminine silhouette. Take Zara's winsome belted version or Uniqlo's jacket – now a modern classic – puffed in thin rows rather than spare tyres that will sit around your waist like an excess of Christmas dinner.

The same goes for detailing that will help convince others that you're not simply some trainspotter or arctic adventurer – fake-fur trim, sporty toggles or drawstrings, even bows (although beware too many of these) will help make your puffa more palatable. Certainly, there's plenty to take on board when plumping for a puffa – it's quite the undertaking, given their propensity to go wrong, their long stint in the style doldrums and the fact that a good one can be really quite expensive.

There are versions to suit all budgets, but bear in mind that the central heating, cool and longevity factors tend to rise proportionately with the price. But once you've decided to take the plunge, be serene: it'll be the warmest winter you've had in years.

Arts and Entertainment
The Doctor and Clara have their first real heart to heart since he regenerated in 'Deep Breath'
TV
News
people
Life and Style
Apple showed no sign of losing its talent for product launches with the new, slightly larger iPhone 6 making headlines
techSecurity breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
Arts and Entertainment
Tracy Emin's 1998 piece 'My Bed' on display at Christie's
artOne expert claims she did not
PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
News
Young Winstone: His ‘tough-guy’ image is a misconception
people
Sport
Ashley Barnes of Burnley scores their second goal
footballMan City vs Burnley match report
Arts and Entertainment
Man of action: Christian Bale stars in Exodus: Gods and Kings
film
News
The official police photograph of Dustin Diamond taken after he was arrested in Wisconsin
peopleDownfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
Arts and Entertainment
Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca alongside Harrison Ford's Han Solo in 'Star Wars'
film
News
Ernesto Che Guevara and Fidel Castro, right, met at Havana Golf Club in 1962 to mock the game
newsFidel Castro ridiculed the game – but now investment in leisure resort projects is welcome
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Fashion

    Recruitment Genius: Business Manager

    £32000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Business Manager is required ...

    Recruitment Genius: Operations Manager

    £45000 - £55000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

    Recruitment Genius: Panel & Cabinet Wireman

    £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Panel Wireman required for small electro...

    Recruitment Genius: Electronics Test Engineer

    £25000 - £27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An SME based in East Cheshire, ...

    Day In a Page

    A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

    A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

    Who remembers that this week we enter the 150th anniversary year of the end of the American Civil War, asks Robert Fisk
    Downfall of Dustin 'Screech' Diamond, the 'Saved By The Bell' star charged with bar stabbing

    Scarred by the bell

    The downfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
    Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

    Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

    Security breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
    Cuba's golf revolution: But will the revolutionary nation take 'bourgeois' game to its heart?

    Will revolutionary Cuba take 'bourgeois' golf to its heart?

    Fidel Castro ridiculed the game – but now investment in leisure resort projects is welcome
    Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

    Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

    Bad language once got TV viewers irate, inciting calls to broadcasting switchboards. But now there is a worse offender, says retiring head of the media watchdog, Ed Richards
    War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

    The West needs more than a White Knight

    Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
    Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

    'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

    Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
    Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

    Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

    Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
    The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

    The stories that defined 2014

    From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
    Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

    Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

    Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?
    Finally, a diet that works: Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced

    Finally, a diet that works

    Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced
    Say it with... lyrics: The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches

    Say it with... lyrics

    The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches
    Professor Danielle George: On a mission to bring back the art of 'thinkering'

    The joys of 'thinkering'

    Professor Danielle George on why we have to nurture tomorrow's scientists today
    Monique Roffey: The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections

    Monique Roffey interview

    The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections
    Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

    Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

    Their outrageousness and originality makes the world a bit more interesting, says Ellen E Jones