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Patagonia Autrain Jacket : Slim, Trim Trench

On the first cold, windy day of November, I decided that I'd had enough of sporty, waist-length jackets.

They were fine on the trail, paired with weatherproof pants, but alone, around town, I just wasn't as warm as I needed to be. I wanted a jacket that covered my waist, covered my butt, and provided some wind protection. I found all that, and got my fashion fix, in Patagonia's Autrain Jacket.

Made out of Polartec PowerShield, a warm, wind-resistant fleece that's soft and fluffy on the inside, sleek and smooth on the outside, and treated to repel moisture, this trendy trench combines the best of technical fabric and urban style.

I LOVE this coat. It's lightweight, city black, and virtually logo-free (there's only a small "patagonia" stitched in gray on the inside of the sleeve hem). The trim design, which curves in delicately just under the bust line, then flows out into a gentle A-line cut is so flattering. I feel darn cute and extra fancy when I walk around town in my Autrain. In fact, my friend saw my beautiful trench and bought one for herself the next day.

I like the double zipper, so I can zip up or down to regulate my temperature. Zipped all the way up, the collar hugs my neck, keeping me toasty warm (and I finally get full coverage -- no more wind blowing up under my jacket). I've worn this jacket in windy, drizzly weather (temps from mid-40s to mid-30s), and felt perfectly comfortable.

Even with the fitted cut, I think this jacket runs a bit big. I'm almost always a size L in women's jackets, and wear a size M in the Autrain.

Available in Black, Aurora Borealis, and Sable Brown, sizes XS-XL.

Bottom LIne: I'm so much more than some sporty hiker lady. I'm a city gal, I'm fancy, and I need a jacket that keeps me warm and looking trim and elegant. Now all I want for Christmas is a red knitted wool cap.--E. D. (Dec '07)

Price: $225

BUY ONLINE : Backcountry ski and snowboard gear, camping,

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