In last Saturday's Off Duty (that's the WSJ's non-business related section for those not in the know) Annette Tapert posed the question "What would you do if you had to replace your entire wardrobe?" in her article The Master Cleanse. She interviewed fashionistas and designers alike about what their key pieces would be in this process and it should come as no surprise that everyone agreed: a good trench coat is an absolute necessity.
I second this whole heartedly. Two years ago I was wonderfully fortunate to receive a Burberry Trench as a birthday gift and I can't even begin to quantify how much I love it. It's not so important who makes your trench but the way it fits you; a perfectly tailored coat gives you an instant confidence boost.
Not to mention they keep you dry when it's raining cats and dogs... it is today. This image below is roughly how chic I looked during my 30 minute walking commute, I wish.