Weather in the UK & Ireland can sometimes be…unpleasant. Rain showers, sharp winds, and depressing grey skies often make for some pretty depressing days once Autumn rolls around. However, my husband and I just started a challenge to see as much of the UK as possible in 80 weekends, and we’re not going to let the weather get in our way! We love the quintessential English style of Barbour, and the all year, all weather functionality you can find in their products is beyond perfect for the English weather.
I’ll be the first to admit that I care about how I look when travelling, which is also why I tend to overpack. While I keep my beauty routine quite simple, I like to make sure I can dress for any possible event we might stumble upon. I also like to account for times when I put on an outfit and just go “ugh” and then change into something else. I personally love the Barbour style because it is practical but also stylish – timelessly so. The sweaters are cosy, the jackets survive all weather, and the boots are perfect for throwing on last minute. I also adore gilets – so stylish, and so convenient for the shoulder season when you’re not quite sure what temperature to dress for!
Here is my list of Barbour essentials for her, with some more information on some of my favourite pieces below:
As I mentioned above, I absolutely love gilets. I wear them over thin long sleeve shirts on warmer days (like when we explored the Cotswolds in early September), and over sweaters on pleasant winter days. If you purchase a more sporty gilet, they are also great for wearing under heavier layers while skiing – for added warmth!
Chunky Knit Sweater
I’m a lover of all things cosy – and chunky sweaters are the perfect wardrobe essential! Chunky sweaters can be with you from your hiking adventures in the morning through late nights by the fire at a local pub. I tend to go for neutral colours – black, grey, and beige. Then, I mix them with a variety of accessories in an attempt to cover up how often I wear them!
All Weather Chelsea Boots
I live in my Barbour Chelsea Boots when travelling in colder weather. They can be worn with all types of outfits including jeans, leggings, and dresses w/ tights. For getting there, they are easy to slip on and off (airport security lines!) and extremely comfy for long periods of walking. Mine are just big enough that I can throw on a pair of thick socks when the temperature hits single digits.
My husband is the complete opposite of me. He’s so simple when it comes to clothing. In fact, he could probably pack his entire wardrobe in a suitcase and the case would still be lighter than one I pack for a week away! When he does purchase clothes, though, he goes for quality over quantity. That’s what makes Barbour so great! He can purchase a couple of items and wear them year round for years to come. Half-zips are his favourite because he can throw them on over a more casual shirt to wear to work, or for a bit of warmth in the morning when he is walking the dog.
Here is my list of Barbour essentials for him (thanks to input from the husband), with some more information on some of Sean’s favourite pieces below:
Everyday Quilted Jacket
Jackets like this are great from September through April (sometimes May!). They’re smart enough to dress us, but casual enough to get muddy. From the pub to the hiking trail, throw this on for an added layer of warmth.
These are Sean’s favourite – I think he has one in every colour (not all Barbour, of course!). They’re great for both casual days out and date nights, work and play. They fit over shirts and t-shirts and under jackets, so they’re perfect for layering. And they look so smart!
While these shoes are not intended for long, muddy walks, they are great for wandering around town for the day. They add a level of style to spruce up a casual outfit, while still maintaining a rugged countryside look. Perfect for being a tourist during the day and going straight for a romantic meal in the evening.
Embrace the Barbour life!
I understand that Barbour is not for everyone – some don’t like the style, some cannot find the right fit, and it’s just a bit over budget for others. There are plenty of other brands that make items very similar to the ones above. Consider this a style guide, and go out and find your favourite version of the items you like! In fact, my husband and I own many of the above items from other brands, and some from Barbour, too.
At the end of the day, it’s the items above that really help make our countryside travels comfortable, Barbour or not. We love knowing that if we pack a few, we can dress for absolutely anything. They’re easy to throw on, easy to clean, and match almost anything. Plus, when our furry travel companion gets muddy, we know that we can deal with him and just wipe down our jackets later – no stress!