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lucillelucillelucille's avatar

What is the difference between a topper, a car coat and a 3/4 length coat?

Asked by lucillelucillelucille (30685points) 3 weeks ago

I’d like to know.
Thank you in advance for your effort.

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

13 Answers

josie's avatar

On the face of it there may not be much difference
But my grandma called any ladies light overcoat a “topper” just like girls call a shirt a top
My dad had a black leather coat that was cut sort of like a three button sport coat but it was lined, and longer and he called it a car coat
¾ is what I would call the long dark form fitting wool coat that men wear over a suit or uniform in cold weather

JLeslie's avatar

Car coats are shorter now than way back in the day. Previously, they were basically a ¾ coat, but now they are more like mid-thigh. If I were the one making up names for coats I would call a car coat a waist jacket, because when sitting it’s easier not to sit on your coat, similar to a bed jacket, but alas, I am not tasked with naming coats.

I think of a topper or topcoat as being a light to medium weight fabric and long, but maybe that definition has evolved also. I never hear topper, but I do sometimes hear topcoat still used. An overcoat, by contrast, is a heavier material in my mind, but still long.

JLeslie's avatar

Just saw your follow up Q. I’d say car coat is the appropriate name now for mid-thigh, but whomever you are telling it to might not define it the same way or be aware of the term, so the best is to say I’m looking for a coat that comes to the mid-thigh. Just spell it out.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@JLeslie -Yes, you’re right. Thanks for your answer. :)

JLeslie's avatar

I just realized I made a mistake. Previously, many years ago, the car coat was similar to a long overcoat.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@JLeslie – I wonder why? Were they freezing in cars? Model T’s?

JLeslie's avatar

That’s what I think. The cars were basically open to the elements. I’m guessing that’s why.

Edit: I just found Wikipedia has a page on it.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@JLeslie -That makes sense. I am looking online at them and feel that I need one right now! XD

LadyMarissa's avatar

@lucillelucillelucille Back in the days of the Model T’s they didn’t freeze in cars because they heated bricks in the fire place or stove & then placed them in a quilt. The quilt was laid over the lap or around the person & with the bricks inside, the user stayed fairly warm…considering. Those cars couldn’t go faster than 35 MPH tops & they didn’t travel very far away from home. Most people didn’t go visiting in the winter because it was simply too much trouble.

Back in the 50’s a car coat came just below the waist. They were easier to carry than a heavy winter coat even when they were made of thicker material. During that time, women wore stockings, girdles, several slips, as well as wool skirts with cotton shirts, so the car coat was made to keep the upper body warmer. The full length women’s coat was awkward to carry as well as being heavy. With the invention of the car coat, young ladies could more easily get around while carrying their coats with them. The car coats now days are a good it longer than their predecessors. That might have something to do with young ladies no longer wear stockings, girdles, slips, nor wool skirts so they need te additional length to stay warm.

I don’t remember the topper, so I don’t know how it differed. Looking at the current versions, I didn’t notice a lot of difference between the topper & the ¾v length coat.

YARNLADY's avatar

I always thought ot was just a marketing ploy to make people buy more than one coat.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@YARNLADY -Lol! Could very well be :)

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