The Barn Jacket Is Fashion's Hardest-Working Spring Coat Trend

From Prada's new luxury version to Carhartt's rugged staple piece, it's the in-crowd's latest style fixation.

Barn coats, field jackets, and chore coats from Spring 2024 runways and street-style
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Google “best barn jackets," and you’ll soon learn that they’re a great, insulated outerwear option to throw on at dawn to bail out the hay and feed the chickens—not to mention, durable enough to withstand the pruning of notoriously thorny blackberry bushes. Outdoorsmen will refer you to the best hardworking options from Carhartt, L.L. Bean, or Dickies, and tell you about each brand’s pros and cons.

But head to TikTok, and you’ll find the discourse much different. There, discussions about Carhartt’s $120 chore coat consider it a savvy spring jacket alternative for Prada’s intentionally worn-in $3,500 version (there’s also a trendy cropped option for $3,700 with a leather collar). Creators and Marie Claire’s very own Editor-in-Chief Nikki Ogunnaike (who has discussed just this in her Self Checkout newsletter) are also fond of the barn, chore, and field (i.e., hunting) jackets that have become ubiquitous across most modern heritage brands, including J.Crew, Toteme, Everlane, Alex Mill, and Barbour (the British-based company made one of Queen Elizabeth II’s favorited styles).

Prada Barn Coat SS2024

Miuccia Prada sent multi-colored barn coats down her Spring 2024 runway.

(Image credit: Launchmetrics)

Before the internet fan base, and long before social media adopted the coat as a transitional spring jacket for their capsule wardrobes, their draw was hard work and much less play. Designed towards the end of the 19th century in France, the original style, crafted from an ultra-durable woven moleskin fabrication, was intended as a uniform for manual laborers and farmhands. Around the 1890s, in the Midwestern United States, the Carhartt brand developed its calling card chore coat in Detroit, Michigan. In the 1930s, the signature corduroy collar was added, followed by slight tweaks to the silhouette, pocket design, and hardware. The jacket became widely revered by rugged workmen across all trades.

Eva Chen wearing a cropped Carhartt barn jacket

Fashion darling Eva Chen styles a cropped version of Carhartt's chore coat with denim.

(Image credit: Getty)

In 2024, amidst a popularity surge, the coat is an arbiter of good taste and personal style—and an unlikely status symbol if you invest in one from Prada or Fendi’s 2024 women’s or menswear collection—regardless of its origin and use case. But who can argue with a jacket that delivers on pragmatism, handsome looks, and multi-season versatility? Not us!

This Way to More Chore Coats, Barn, and Field Jackets

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Sara Holzman
Style Director

Sara Holzman is the Style Director for Marie Claire, where she's worked alongside the publication for eight years in various roles, ensuring the brand's fashion content continues to inform, inspire, and shape the conversation about fashion's ever-evolving landscape. With a degree from the Missouri School of Journalism, Sara is responsible for overseeing a diverse fashion content mix, from emerging and legacy designer profiles to reported features on the influence of social media on style and seasonal and micro trends across the world's fashion epicenters in New York, Milan, and Paris. Before joining Marie Claire, Sara held fashion roles at Conde Nast's Lucky Magazine and Self Magazine and was a style and travel contributor to Equinox's Furthermore website. Over her decade of experience in the fashion industry, Sara has helped guide each brand's style point of view, working alongside veteran photographers and stylists to bring editorial and celebrity photo shoots to fruition from start to finish. Sara currently lives in New York City. When she's not penning about fashion or travel, she’s at the farmer’s market, on a run, working to perfect her roasted chicken recipe, or spending time with her husband, dog, and cat. Follow her along at @sarajonewyork