RIP, My Sweet, Sweet Vintage Coats

by Sammy in Comment — Updated January 12, 2024

God bless my roommate.

I’m not sure how he deals with the fact that I own approximately 2 1/2 closets to my name in our sweet SpaHa apartment.

“What do you mean by saying 2-and-a-half closets, Sammy?” You’re probably asking.

“Yes. 2-and-a-half closets — my own, the entire coat closet, and a chest [which in Sammy Speak, counts as 1/2 a closet].”

So … since my roomie has been out of the apartment for a few days and I’ve had the opportunity to rock out in what has since become a studio for muah, I decided to go to to town in my HUGE closet of coats and detox the ones that I just wasn’t wearing, and which admittingly, I wasn’t ever going to wear again.

These three darlings below once had important places in my wardrobe, but with my change of style, along with the addition of at least a handful of new coats to my name [and then there’s the entire Sammy Davis Vintage collection in my storage space …], well, you understand why I had to donate them to my local Goodwill.

Sammy D Unsolicited Advice!!!

Every three months, review your seasonal wardrobe. What did you wear often? What did you wear a few times? What did you NOT wear AT ALL?

If you didn’t wear something AT ALL … I strongly suggest going into your kitchen closet or cabinet, pulling out a plastic bag, and confidently placing said item that you neglected to wear that season in the plastic bag. Then log onto and find the nearest Goodwill drop-off donation center near you. Or, Salvation Army. Whichever strikes your fancy and will take the least amount of fuel to drive to [hey – it’s a valid reason to keep in mind!]

Thank goodness I have a Goodwill approximately one avenue and 4 streets away from me. The doorman knows me, I recognize the employees, and I have about a dozen tax write-off sheets to my name since the store opened late last summer ‘08.

OH! About those TAX WRITE-OFFS!!

If you donate to a store, request for one of these itty bitty sheets. All you do: write your name, addy, phone number, and what you donated [1 bag of shoes, 2 bags of pants/shirts for women, etc.] and then the store employee will take care of the rest. Keep said tax write offs in a special place, and pull ‘em out beginning of February [or whenever you get around to doing your taxes]. The government — I PROMISE!! — will reward you.

And so will your closet!

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THE COAT: She Likes it Red Hot

THE STORY: Well, this is how the story goes according to Mama D. The year is 1987. She had just given birth to me a year earlier in 1986 [!!!].  My then 31-year-old mama goes to a party in the dead of winter, wearing a fabulous red coat. She gives it to coat check. When she returns, this is the red coat that remained — but not HER red coat!!! The benefit: She snagged a NICER red coat than the one its own mistakenly took [hers]. It’s a Calvin Klein, beautiful lining and made from heavy wool. Oh-so-warm in the winter, with that masculine-bordering-feminine build popular in the 80s. Guess coat check in the 80s wasn’t that reliable, huh?

VINTAGE HOW?: Mama D, late 80s Calvin Klein

WHY I NO LONGER WEAR IT: I wore it — last year. I wore it a lot, actually. But it just … grew out of my wardrobe. I don’t know what it is. I can’t put my finger on it. I guess it just makes me look too boxy, or it could be the fact that I’ve since added coats to my wardrobe that have become more appealing alternatives to this. It’s like I said up above [yes, I take my words of wisdom to heart!] — if you don’t wear it once during the season, donate it. And I haven’t worn this one yet, so odds are I won’t wear it before spring.

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Thanks, Mama D. You give me everything from your wardrobe that’s good.

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THE COAT: Little White & Brown Riding Hood

THE STORY: Grabbed off the $10 [!!!] sale rack at my favorite vintage store EVER in West, Chester, PA where my Pops lives. Malena’s … go there!


WHY I NO LONGER WEAR IT: Scroll down for the real reason: the [fake!] leather is flaking off. Actually, it’s been flaking off for quite some time now. I just grinned and bore it because I was too busy soaking up compliments for this beautiful piece. But since the flakes are sticking to everything — and I mean, EVERYTHING aka my purse, the seat, my hair … — it’s time to pass this one down the supply & demand clothing chain.

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Little brown-and-white riding home. Of … Spanish Harlem, aka the woods of New York City.

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Flake, flake, flake …. ew.

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THE COAT: Wilson’s Almost-Famous Leather Suede.

THE STORY: This is one of my most memorable vintage purchases of my youth. I bought it at a consignment store in Lancaster, PA [what up 717!] called Deja Vu. I remember the moment I bought it — and the debate I had up to the purchase itself. I think I was in 8th [?] grade. I think it was ridiculously cheap too, at like $20. But that felt like a LOT at age 14!!! I felt so … cool. Plus, it looks eerily similar to the one Kate Hudson wore in Almost Famous.

VINTAGE HOW?: Late 80s to early 90s

WHY I NO LONGER WEAR IT: It’s just … too big. The arms are extremely wide and my itty bitty arms just don’t fill ‘em out so that the cut is even semi-attractive. I would belt the thing with a big wide brown belt, if it weren’t for the extra-large width of the arms. Plus, a button is missing. And honestly, I’m too lazy to go buy a matching button and sew it back on.

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