When it is utterly, utterly miserable outside, and you absolutely have to leave the house, throw on a bright coat. It may not make the rain stop, or your train run on time, or the queue for your salted caramel latte any shorter, but you will feel just a teeny bit better for defying the hideous weather and not dressing like you're going to a funeral.
This berry-hued number by Planet is my current go-to. I was sent it as a gift after attending the Mum & Me Coatwalk press event for my day job and I have hardly worn anything else since (despite owning approximately 7,652 coats). It is so cheery and cosy and flattering.
Underneath it, I've got a sort of luxe grunge thing going on. I am (just) old enough to remember this trend the first time around, so I can't quite pull it off in a literal, throwback, cool-Topshop-girl kind of way. So I'm wearing a vintage velvet-trimmed slip I found in a charity shop with a cardigan, my favourite classic riding boots and black opaque tights (natch – have you seen it out there?).
Recently, I've realised that I'm favouring very simple, small, long-strap shoulder bags, and specifically a little unbranded leather one I thrifted, that bears a striking resemblance to this beautiful Sophie Hulme one.