c. 1935 Congress Sportswear half-zip, half button point blanket mackinaw coat

http://www.ebay.com/itm/271624812561
This vintage coat was made c.1935 by Congress Sportswear and would likely have been sold under the “Maine Guide” label. This is a highly unusual and short lived style produced by Congress, with a half-zip, half-button front. The bottom half zipped up with a Talon grommet zipper, and the top with a 3×6 double breasted closure, which can be buttoned closed, buttoned like coat lapels, or open like 19th century military uniforms. The coat has a zip hood, which can be folded up and snapped (with early United Carr snaps) to form a collar. The coat is unlined, as is typical of these early mackinaw coats, and has taped seams.
The coat is readily identifiable as a Congress Sportswear product by several details. Congress was one of the only manufacturers to produce this half-and-half style, but details, like the un-hemmed bottom edge, and the contrast pocket trim and cuff adjusters are unique to Maine Guide products. These coats were produced by Congress for several other house labels, namely Abercombie and Fitch.
The coat is made from Hudson’s Bay Company point blanket, with a 1930s label. This fabric was, at the time, one of the most expensive wool fabrics available for high-end outdoors garments. The zipper is identifiable as being manufactured in the mid 1930s by its bell shape, the deco rays found both on the slider and the pull and by the oval shaped attachment piece between the slider and pull, which had been replaced by the later 1930s by a square sided bersion. The grommets of the grommet zipper, as well as the primitive stop-box, are still in place, although the current zipper, slightly shorter than the original, can be identified as a later production model Talon by its rounded edged pull and stop-box design.

Chest (pit to pit): 24″ (doubled = 48″)
Shoulder to shoulder: 18″
Sleeve (shoulder to cuff): 24″
Length (Base of collar to hem): 36-1/2″

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1940s Maine Guide by Congress Hudson’s Bay point blanket coat

http://www.ebay.com/itm/271617873047
This vintage coat was made in the USA by Congress under the Maine Guide Sportswear label. It is made from English-made Hudson’s Bay point blanket material, one of the highest quality and most expensive wools on the market for this type of coat at that point. These coats were most popular in red and black stripe, and in multi-stripe (green red, yellow and indigo stripes on a white background).

The style of the Hudson’s Bay label and the (R) symbol on the Maine Guide label help to date this to the late 1940s, although the overall pattern of the coat belongs more to the 1930s. There were two major waves of Hudson’s Bay Point Blanket mackinaw popularity, one in the mid 1930s and one immediately after WWII. The ones from the 1940s period to which this one belongs were generally beltless and single breasted, whereas this fits the traditional mackinaw mold of the 1920s and 1930s, but with a bit more flair. I like the way the Maine Guide coats use the pattern of the blanket to accentuate the details of their coats. The “points” of the blanket are right up front. The sleeves are defined by the stripe, as are the handwarmer pockets and the buttoned sleeve adjuster belts. The hip pocket flaps contrast against the main stripe. Some manufacturers of point blanket coats merely tailored their standard mackinaw pattern in a different material. Maine Guide went the extra step to take full advantage of everything the iconic Canadian fabric had to offer. The blanket wool is thick and has a long nap, which is also more typical of earlier production blankets than those found on coats dating from the 1950s-present, after manufacturing was switched from England to Canada. It makes sense, as the company had a lot of experience with blanket coats. In the early 1930s, Maine Guide produced a model with a double breasted chest and a zippered bottom. A really unique look.

This coat is double breasted and belted, and has stylish peak lapels and a rounded collar which I have only seen on blanket coats made by Maine Guide. Another unique feature to Maine Guide is the bottom hem, which uses the edge of the blanket, instead of having a bottom seam. The coat was originally unlined, which is more typical of pre-war patterns. At some point a lining was added to the jacket, but not finished on the bottom edge. When you lift this later lining, you can see the original tags from the Hudson’s Bay Company and from Maine Guide, as well as the taped seams that indicate its original unlined construction. The coat was originally sold by Hudson’s Sport Store of Detroit.

Chest (pit to pit): 23″ (doubled = 46″)
Shoulder to shoulder: 20″
Sleeve (shoulder to cuff): 23″
Length (base of collar to hem): 34″

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Here’s a shot of a green version of this same maker and model which I sold earlier in the year, showing what the lining/construction is like without the later lining overlay  photo green.jpg

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1950s-1960s Robert Lewis plaid peacoat

http://www.ebay.com/itm/281424741232
This vintage coat was made in the late 1950s-early 1960s by then popular outwear maker, Robert Lewis. The design is somewhere between a peacoat and a mackinaw. The two have always been close in design- hip length and double breasted, with the fabric being a large part of what sets the designs apart. This one is a close copy of a post-WWII peacoat in terms of cut (with the pea coat anchor buttons really cementing the style), but made in classically mackinaw napped wool plaid fabric. The muted plaid makes it suitable for both casual and more dressy looks. The coat is lined with a warm pile material and quilted sleeves.

Tagged size: 40
Chest (pit to pit): 23″ (doubled = 46″)
Shoulder to shoulder: 20″
Sleeve (shoulder to cuff): 24-1/2″
Length (base of collar to hem): 30-1/2″

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1920s leather lined shawl collar coat

http://www.ebay.com/itm/281406909215
This vintage coat was made in the 1920s. It is a shawl collared mackinaw style, with a sheepskin collar. The coat is belted with an early style buttoned belt. It has handwarmer pockets on the chest and flapped cargo pockets on the hips. The coat is leather-lined in the body and sleeves for windproofing. Prior to the adoption of leather as a common exterior material for coats in the 1920s, it was popular as a lining material for outdoorsy garments like this one.

Chest (pit to pit): 23″ (doubled = 46″)
Shoulder to shoulder: 20″
Sleeve (shoulder to cuff): 26″
Length (base of collar to hem): 43″

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1930s Red Hudson’s Bay Company point blanket mackinaw coat

http://www.ebay.com/itm/281406858780
This vintage coat was made in the 1930s from Hudson’s Bay Company point blankets. It is a classic double breasted mackinaw cut. At some point, the coat was fully lined, but where it is coming away, you can see the taped seams and hanger loop which give away the original unlined construction, which was typical on blanket mackinaws of the era.

Chest (pit to pit): 24″ (doubled = 48″)
Shoulder to shoulder: 21″
Sleeve (shoulder to cuff): 24″
Length (base of collar to hem): 31″

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1930s Red Hudson’s Bay point blanket coat

http://www.ebay.com/itm/281399895994
This vintage coat was made c. 1937 from Hudson’s Bay Company point blankets. The coat is a classic late 1930s double breasted mackinaw cut, with flapped patch cargo pockets and slash handwarmers with arrow reinforcement stitching. The back has a scalloped yoke and pleated back. The cuffs have buttoned adjusters. Inside are two different styles of Hudson’s Bay label, which help with the dating.

Chest (pit to pit): 23″ (doubled = 46″)
Shoulder to shoulder: 18″
Sleeve (shoulder to cuff): 25″
Length (base of collar to hem): 35″

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1930s – 1940s Hercules shawl collared leather coat

http://www.ebay.com/itm/271547750220
This vintage coat was made for Sears in the 1940s and was sold under their Hercules workwear label. The coat is made of black front quarter horsehide with a brown mouton collar. It is double breasted, with a shawl collar, handwarmer pockets and flapped cargo pockets, square yokes front and back and buttoned adjuster belts on the cuffs. The coat has a quilted cotton lining, lighter in weight than the typical sheepskin lining found in this style coat. Sleeve linings are purple, and have knitted cuffs to keep the wind out. The Hercules label is of the style used in the 1940s, however the last time I can find this model in any Sears catalog is in the Fall 1940 edition. This style of double breasted, shawl collared, hip length leather coat was popular in the 1920s and 1930s and changed very little through its production run. By WWII, this style coat would have been considered old fashioned and was replaced by zip-front sheeplined surcoat style jackets.

Chest (pit to pit): 24″ (doubled = 48″)
Shoulder to shoulder: 20″
Sleeve (shoulder to cuff): 25-3/4″
Length (base of collar to hem): 33″

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