Have you ever wondered why a pea coat is called a "pea coat"?

The definition of a pea coat is an outer coat, generally of a navy-colored heavy wool, originally worn by sailors of European navies and air pilots.

Prior to the 19th century pea coats were made from a fabric called pilot cloth, which is a thick, coarse, twilled woolen fabric that is heavy in weight and strong. Since the coats were being made out of "pilot cloth", which was shortened to be called "P-cloth". The jacket was often called a "pilot jacket", which eventually was shortened to be called a "P-Jacket" or "P-Coat" or what we refer today as "Pea Coat."

The actual transition from "P-Coat" to "Pea Coat" is still uncertain, but fashion designer Michael Ferrera argues they are respectably interchangeable. "P" and "Pea" simply may have been interpreted in different ways when spoken by different people. This may have just stuck and carried on with time.

So now you know, that fancy cashmere pea coat you may be putting away this winter was initially a not-so-fancy productive naval jacket rather than a fashion statement. Add that to your fashion knowledge, that's, Life...With Style!

Yours truly,
ghost blogger for
Michael Ferrera

1 comment:

  1. I'm a fan of Pea Coats but we do not get to fully appreciate them in So Cal since its not always cold enough to wear them :-/ But this problem can be solved by a few trips to Washington, Colorado, NY, Chicago, or DC in the fall and winter :-)


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