By: Lindsay Kranitz
Reminiscing from decade to decade, many popular fashion influencers as well as everyday fashion-lovers, pick and choose different styles of clothes that could become a popular trend in the present year. One trend, specifically a special kind of coat, is making its way to becoming “the coat of the season” this fall and winter 2020.
Originating from the Ghazni Province, which is one of the 34 provinces in Afghanistan, the Afghan coat has made its way from being the traditional sheepskin/goatskin lined coat for the Afghans, all the way to becoming a staple fashion statement piece for this upcoming chilly season. With its warm fur-lined interior and flexible but shapely exterior, the afghan coat has been allowing people to stay warm in the winter in a tasteful manner.
For decades now, The afghan coat has adapted with small fashionable twists. Back in Afghanistan, local artisans would alter the exterior of the coat with charming hand-embroidered designs in all different colors. This beautifully elegant trend was seen by Craig Sams, who was a businessman and author in the United Kingdom. Sams then began to sell these one-of-a-kind, locally made coats through a boutique in London called ‘Granny takes a Trip’. One of the customers of this shop happened to be none other than The Beatles! The group eventually put their own fashionable twist on the coat themselves. The cover of their record ‘Magical Mystery Tour’ pictured The Beatles wearing Afghan coats inside out so that the sheepskin was exposed all over.
Soon after their record was released, the Afghan coat trend took off. People from all over wanted to get their hands on a coat like this. Ghazni artisans could not keep up with the high demand of their initial, thoughtfully detailed design so imitations of the coat were beginning to arise.
The afghan coat quickly became part of the 1970’s “hippie culture” and as the years went on, many different alterations and replicas of this fashion craze popped up in multiple fast fashion stores. Today, there are an astonishing number of vintage afghan coats sold on platforms such as Depop, Poshmark, Etsy, and Ebay.
Thanks to the extremely talented local artisans from the Ghazni Province, John Lennon for showing the coat to the world, and the multitude of vintage afghan coats being sold on second hand sites recently, we now have an extraordinary coat to admire (to be in awe over) this fall and winter.