WHEN it comes to stocking up on new season essentials, a coat is one of – if not the most important item you'll buy. It's got to look good, keep you warm, and mesh well with the rest of your wardrobe, so this isn't a purchase that should be taken lightly.

That's why we've assembled a guide to the catwalk-inspired coats and jackets that will help you look cool and stay warm this winter. Whether you want an affordable wardrobe update or an investment piece, here are the trends you need to know about and where to shop them...

This season's coolest check coats are longline and straight cut, perfect for layering over swishy skirts or wide leg trousers.

:: Principles Multicoloured Checked City Coat, currently reduced to £52 from £65; Principles Black Check Print Wide Leg Trousers, reduced to £28 from £35; Principles Navy Check Downbrim Hat, £22; Faith Natural Leather Trim Kicks Chunky Trainers, reduced to £23.20 from £29 (jumper, stylist's own), Debenhams

:: Palones Kimmi Deconstructed Trench, £185; Batwing Shirt, £59; Kimmi Deconstructed Wide Leg Trousers, £130 (shoes, stylist's own)

Whether it's a short and sweet jacket or a colossal coat, pick a primary colour and wear it with pride.

Be it in traditional teddy bear hues or mood-boosting brights, these fuzzy feel-good coats will keep you cosy all winter long.

:: M&Co Camel Jumper, £18; Ripped Black Jeans, £26; (Right) Plum Blouse, £26; Coated Trousers, £26, CoatS, £59 (shoes, stylist's own)

Baby Princess

You know that black shearling jacket that's been ubiquitous for the last couple of winters? Well it's back, but this time with a difference. This season's aviators are pale and interesting – so make sure yours is cream, ivory, pastel pink or baby blue.

:: Oasis Off-White Shearling Jacket, £85; Funnel Knit, £46 (available later this month; trousers, stylist's own)

An outerwear essential that will never go out of style. Camel is the classic colour choice for a minimalist belted style, but soft pinks or ivory tones have a cool, modern feel.

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