Coherence: What we liked in January, that you can actually buy now

Friday, October 20th 2023
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When I walk around Pitti each season, interviewing makers and researching articles, it can be easy to feel lost in a flood of Italian cashmere and trainers that look like each other. 

For that reason there are a handful of brands I return to every time, almost like coming up for air. They remind you how exquisite menswear can be, how beautiful and original. Japanese brand Coherence is one of those. 

Coherence has evolved quite a bit since we first covered them six years ago. Back then the brand was in a small, end-of-the line booth, and the collection was entirely outerwear inspired by artists and musicians. 

Today Coherence is in the better pavilion, in a lovely quiet corner, and the stand is both bigger and better. It has expanded into trousers, shorts and chore coats, there is a sub-brand called Orbium (made in Italy rather than Japan). It’s a place you can hang out and chat, and usually get into a conversation about fabrics. 

When I visited Coherence back in January, I had the idea of not covering the collection then, but waiting eight months, until now, so that the clothes would be in the shops. 

When you see clothes at Pitti you don’t know which wholesalers will buy them, if any do. So if it’s a brand like Coherence that doesn’t have full e-commerce, you have no idea whether the clothes will ever be available. By waiting a few months and doing it this way, we do. 

Here, therefore, are some of the few things we liked back in January, and where they’re available.

Above is the ‘Birks-FLB’. This a field-type jacket made in an exclusive gabardine. (Cloth development is probably the thing that’s actually most impressive about Coherence.)

It has a wool lining, a football-style leather button tab closure, and corduroy trimming. It looks so simple, like something you’ve seen before - but better. The work is clean, there are details everywhere: that wool lining is loose but secured to the bottom with little tabs. The button they developed themselves, and is the only one I’ve ever liked. 

I think it’s the kind of thing Hermes should be doing - and used to do. Also that Loro Piana used to do - the Icer, the Roadster - but hasn’t for a while: menswear staples taken to the nth degree. Not by adding fur or cashmere or super-200s wool, but by working out what the perfect zip would be, and then paying to make it. 

That doesn’t mean that the jacket is your style, of course. It isn’t mine. The design is a little too simple, perhaps too classic. But I hugely respect it. 

The Birks-FLB was bought by the following stores. Clutch and Beige are receiving their stock soon, the others have it already:

Clutch and Unipair are also carrying the jacket in the green ‘rain camo’ material shown at the bottom of this article. 

Anyone that clicked on one of those links and saw the Coherence selection will realise how expensive it is. That’s the main reason I don’t own much (only the Marc raincoat). 

But with Coherence it’s very clear what that money goes on - on the exclusive cloths, hardware, production. You can see that as soon as you pick up a piece and try it. You don’t know what the difference is, often, until someone explains that the coat, although unstructured, was made like a suit jacket with pressing on 3D moulds. 

This doesn’t make it any more affordable, but I know PS readers will like to know that the money goes into the product, rather than elsewhere. And it’s worth remembering what it then means for the usually small retailers to risk that money on stock. 

Quality is particularly relevant with my second selection above, the Jackson chore jacket and trousers, because they are seemingly so simple. Just a chore with various pockets, and either buttoned (Jackson) or drawstring (Alain) trousers. 

This is a piece I would buy though, and it’s what my chore suit should have been. The fabric is perfect: hardy enough to feel like workwear but still high quality and drapes well. The details are also there if you look, from angled cuffs to neat tack stitches. 

My issue with these jackets is that they are usually too short on me, if the chest is right. And that’s the case here: the 48 is great on the chest but I’d want at least a 50 for length. It’s the same with the Orbium tailoring, unfortunately. 

The Jackson chore is available at:

Finally the Gianni, which is like an elevated harrington with a fly front, raglan shoulder and coin (originally, watch) pocket. 

The make of this shows off the Coherence finishing, with that coin pocket transforming neatly into a welt - with the same precision as top tailoring. In fact you could see this as the closest a harrington jacket will ever get to tailoring, including the dark-navy twill used in the version shown above. 

Clutch had this in green and some stripes this summer, and I never quite got into it. But this navy wool feels much more wearable. 

The Coherence founder, Kentaro Nakagomi (below) always has a nice way of putting things. He told me in January that he sees people want more casual clothing, but often the clothing is quite sloppy, using cheap fabrics. The Coherence pieces feel, in his words, more respectful, more polite - not to other people, but to the wearer themselves. 

Coherence is a luxury brand, but only in the sense of accessibility. The clothes always feel elevated but not luxe. As a designer put it to me later that day: “It’s a bit too clean for me, but I’m still jealous of it. It’s intimidating, so perfect, so polished. There’s nothing here like it.” 

The Gianni is available at:

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The retailers list the Birks-FLB as made of cotton gabardine rather than wool gabardine as stated here. Which is correct?


Simon, what size did you take in the Birks? I assume Medium but wondering how roomy it is since I tend to wear a bit bigger than you. Thanks.


Connecting to your recent article about the art fair, my association here would be with a well-dressed architect. Mr Nakagomi’s look with the scarf also feeds into that for me.

As a sportier and more affordable alternative I’d recommend the Italian brand l’Impermeabile which also has limited e-commerce but what you can find elsewhere is somewhat similar to Coherence with trench coats, jackets with lots of pockets etc.


I fail to see the point of an advertisement for a brand who’s products you can seemingly buy in about 6 locations around the world.


How funny. That’s exactly the type of brands I would like to hear about.

Jakob W

This was a great overview, thanks Simon; my assumption for Japanese brands like this is always that they are going to be expensive but obsessive about quality, but it’s nice to see all the points of detail brought out. The downside for me/upside for my wallet is that as someone pushing two metres tall, Japanese sizing is usually not for me.

Could you expand any on the point about the Jackson being what your chore suit should have been? Is it quality of make, cut, or something else?

Jakob W

Ah, am I right in thinking it’s wool? I hadn’t realised.


The Gianni jacket is beautiful .
Great ‘form and function’ although in an ever increasing ‘cashless society’ the coin pocket is more a nice design detail then functional.

Coherence is a brand I’ve learnt of through PS but it’s a shame it’s offered in so few stores and is expensive.
Nice to see great casual RTW clothes designed for ‘grown ups’ .


Likewise, love these pockets as keys don’t move around and possibly cause holes.


Always loved what they are doing. I own a raincoat and that’s true, you understand immediately the quality of it, the cut are amazing too.


The founder’s comment about people wanting casual not sloppy is a great point. It is similar to wanting a small car not a cheap car.
This seems to be the trend you have been talking about recently of becoming less formal, but still quality (fabric, cut etc.), therefore more expensive and so is it an investment.
I lived in Japan for a couple of years and recognise a lot of Japan in the cut and intention of Coherence. Not me, but for those who are attracted to it and it fits it will look distinctive out of Japan.
I did a quick price check, as you mention being a bit pricey whilst being high quality. I think they were top end of reasonable, certainly not stratospheric a la Loro Piana. You do not seem to be paying for lavish marketing campaigns if the quality is as good as you say.


Hi Simon,
Thank you for this article. I would like to give a quick call out and thanks to Clutch Cafe who not only managed to obtain an out of stock item and added a coat they hadn’t ordered to their order as a special for me.
I concur on all your well made points. Whilst towards the more expensive end I would say the raincoats are no dearer than a Burberry. Also I think the import duties are quite high for Japanese products although that may have changed recently.
Great point from Kentaro Nakagomi about the clothing being more polite and more respectful to the wearer themselves. That nicely sums up for me the feeling (although I hadn’t previously thought it) when I’m wearing either of the two Corb 2 raincoats and the Corb Tweed coat which has an amazing cloth as well as style and finish. . The latter is the most positively commented on item that I wear. The details are exquisite as is the attention to the hardware. For example the buttons have have a small raised disc on the reverse (I expect there is a technical term for it?) that makes the coat easier to button and they appear to lay flatter when buttoned.
As you can tell I’m a fan! Although I would say I only have the coats which are good all round fit for me being around a 38 and 5.11.
Whilst playing in a different space the attention to detail is reminiscent of the Real MCoys (also a fan) standard. I would opinion these are two brands that exemplify the high and innovative Japanese standards- rather than simply trade on being ‘Japanese’.
Apologies for the long comment, I just have a lot of positive things to say about Coherence. Long may they stay around.


I quite like the Birks-FLB, although I’m not sure about the the button over the zip. From the pictures it also seems like it would go over tailoring being short/fitted, although I would be keen to try it on.
Overall, I have two coherence pieces and love them. Will there be more coverage of orbium?


Hi Simon, slightly off-topic but who’s the maker of the lovely green tweed sports coat you’re wearing in the second photo? Looks great with the faded jeans. Thank you.

J Crewless

I like it as well. Good call.


The open chest pocket on the Birks doesn’t look that functional – surely it would be cleaner without? Otherwise, looks really good.


Simon, may I ask what size you are wearing in the Birks-LFB?


Hi Simon,
Just a supplementary thought to my previous comment. Perhaps Coherence could partake in a future PS pop-up shop. Be great to have access to some of the items not usually available in the UK.


Lovely in depth interview with Kentaro for those interested – makes you further appreciate his dedication to making the best outerwear.


Thank you for that, an excellent in depth discussion. I’m always impressed how much the Japanese look at vintage items and magazines for inspiration.


With regards to the jackets being too short on you, for your chest size – I have the opposite problem being average height and having a slightly larger chest in proportion to the rest of my body. Almost always, with an otherwise perfectly fitting top/jacket I would need to go up a size for the chest to fit. And doing so invariably means the length and arms and sometimes shoulders don’t fit. Finding Japanese brands has been a godsend.

I think this is an area Menswear can develop. Actually, it’s not a new concept for offering different lengths i.e. Med-Tall, Tall, XL-Tall. I can definitely remember it being the case in not very exclusive brands in the past. Rarely encounter it now.


Just to add to that as it’s something I’ve always wondered with sizing i.e. if the chest was only made that bit bigger. Is it that the chest is too billowy in the 50 where the length is just right? Are there other issues with fit?


I see. This is exactly the problem I have when I have to size up, the chest is then just right but the rest is just too big. I don’t remember having such a problem until the slim & skinny fit trend began prior to about 15 years ago. Age and gaining some weight overall may be a factor also.
In your case, offering different lengths should solve the problem. In mine, I’m not sure what would other than making the chest bigger, which may be an issue for those without bigger chests. I have found vents and gussets help.
I’ve been on the lookout for a while now for brands offering made-to-measure option for items like this – similar to what 40Colori do. Would love to see this becoming a thing in the way it has with suits and shirts in recent years.


Hi Simon, I bought a cotton poplin Gianni jacket a few years ago and it’s probably my favourite item of clothing. Beautifully made and a joy to wear, while also understated. Thanks for the great article.

Jasper Smit

Hello Simon,

Maby off topic but.. I’m just wondering.. Do you have any idea how much of your readers can afford clothing like this? Im here because I love things of quality for the same reasons as you do but in the profession I’m in I will never be able to buy something like this, not new anyway. Which is fine. So I’m a bit sneaking into this world but for sure not a part of it.

I was just wondering if most readers here are like that or not.. Thanks very much.


In your reader income survey you stated the average income as £130k. Are you sure £350k here is correct?


Thanks. Which is which? I’m guessing £350k is the median?


I’m looking (likely incorrectly) at the 2019 survey where the median was £85k and the mean £130k?


Very nice clothes and i was checking last week the lost and found page and found a nice coherence coat there that costs 2700 euro so its out for me this year but looks really gorgeous. Could you help with a loafer thema ? I ordered the weejuns 90s to try them as an everyday chunky loafer and while i really like how they look the left foot is not so good fitting as the right which fits like a glove. Do you have a suggestion for this except an insole that i already tried and helped but didnt solve the problem? To me if loafers are slipping easily out are not going to be worn at all. Do you maybe have another brand suggestion with chunkier loafers ? I saw a nice pair of crocket and jones, the henley 3 but without trying im not sure..


Simon how does a tongue pad work on a loafer, which doesn’t have a tongue please?

Alfred N

Those do look like amazing pieces. Something austere about them but that’s part of the appeal.


Great to see coverage of the always-excellent Coherence. I had just taken delivery of the Birks-FLB from Frans Boone a few days before this article came out; it’s a wonderful jacket. It’s my third piece from Coherence, and all of them are of unerring quality. I love the cuts of the pieces and all of the beautiful, thoughtful details. Even though I already have another waterproof gabardine jacket from them (a piece they did with The Armoury several years ago), the lovely details of the Birks won me over. Thank you Simon for shining a light on this truly deserving small brand.


Thank you for the feature, it’s lovely to find out more of what goes into producing these. Looks like Michael Jondral also stock the Gianni, although only size large is left:


Hi Simon,
I wonder if you can advise me. I’m planning to buy an item from Anatomica in Japan. I’m assuming I’ll pay VAT. Have you have any experience of the import duties from Japan?
No worries if you don’t know.
Thanks Stephen


Awesome take, I would like to add that I have never heard of Coherence just a few months back, only vaguely remember the name from Simon’s mention and good words during one of Mark Cho’s interviews post Pitti, then came November when I was searching for a trench coat preparing for the coming winter chill.

Whilst comparing different options from trying on Burberry’s products in store, reading Simon’s referential articles of Coherence here on PS, and with Mark Cho’s videos and talk with Mr Nakagomi. Incidentally, there is an official local stockist here called Mandambugs, I was quite smitten straight away with the fabrics, hardware, sewing and craftsmanship of the AL II Gabardine Trench Coat.

There is certainly an unmistaken Japanese, almost contrived utilitarian simplicity or cleanliness to it, but the attention to details and the perfection along just makes you feel incredulous and puts a smile on your face every time you wear it.


Thanks so much for this write-up, I’ve wanted to learn more about the offerings from Coherence. You note the wool lining is lose and secured with tabs at the bottom of the Birks-FLB piece. Is the wool lining fully removable?