Barbour Beaufort vs Bedale: Navigating the Best of British Style

Why the Right Wax Jacket Matters

We’ve all faced that moment: staring at our reflection as we try on different wax jackets, contemplating which one justifies parting with our hard-earned cash. The decision may appear straightforward, yet when you consider that a quality wax jacket can endure for years—even a lifetime—the stakes escalate. This is not merely about making a fashion statement for a single season. It’s about selecting a wax jacket that combines durability, functionality, and timeless style, promising to serve you well through countless seasons and adventures.

The Heritage Behind Barbour: It’s Not Just About the Jackets

Step into the world of Barbour, a British legacy in high-end outerwear that’s been around since the late 19th century. Putting on a Barbour jacket isn’t just a fashion statement; it’s like wearing a piece of history. These jackets are as durable as they are timeless, gracefully aging and gathering a patina that adds to their tale over the years. Far from just weathering the seasons, they seem to grow better, more charming, with each year that passes.

The Jacket Showdown: Barbour Beaufort or Bedale?

Two standouts in the Barbour lineup—the Beaufort and the Bedale—are frequent hot topics when people consider which Barbour jacket to make their own. Both come with Barbour’s iconic promise of quality and durability but also sport their individual flair and perks. Faced with such appealing alternatives, how do you pick the one that’s right for you?

What We’ll Explore: A Detailed Guide

In this all-encompassing guide, we’ll lead you through the fascinating universe of Barbour’s Beaufort and Bedale jackets. To help you make the most educated pick, we’ll cover the following areas:

  • Style and Looks: What kind of vibe do these jackets offer? How could they amp up your wardrobe for various events and settings?
  • Craftsmanship and Materials: What goes into the making of these jackets, and how does that affect their lifespan and comfort level?
  • Practicality and Unique Traits: Beyond just looking great, how useful are these jackets? What sets them apart in terms of features?
  • Aging Gracefully: How do these jackets hold up over time? What should you expect in terms of upkeep and how they’ll mature?

By the time you finish reading, you won’t merely be picking out a jacket—you’ll be investing in a piece that aligns seamlessly with your life, your preferences, and your long-term goals.

So, let’s take an in-depth journey into the world of Barbour’s Beaufort and Bedale jackets, to discover which one is your ideal match.

Section 1: The History and Brand Legacy of Barbour

A Storied Past: The Genesis of Barbour

Founded in 1894 by John Barbour in South Shields, England, Barbour initially began as an importer of oilcloth. Recognizing the unmet need for durable, waterproof, yet comfortable outerwear among the British mariners and fishermen, the brand soon started crafting its signature waxed cotton jackets. These jackets not only met but surpassed the harsh demands of life in coastal England. Over the years, the company has garnered numerous royal warrants and has solidified its standing as an enduring symbol of British heritage.

More than Just Outerwear: Barbour’s Evolution

The term “durable” perhaps undersells the enduring nature of a Barbour garment. Beyond just longevity, Barbour has evolved to offer a diverse range of apparel without ever compromising its core commitment to quality. While their wax jackets continue to be a staple, the brand now boasts a wide array of garments, from knitwear and shirts to trousers and accessories. Each piece is designed with the same meticulous attention to detail that has come to define Barbour.

Barbour jackets have been sported by everyone from fishermen to fashionistas, from the Queen of England to the characters in the James Bond movies. Despite such widespread appeal, one thing remains consistent: the brand’s unwavering dedication to durability. The coats are not only designed to withstand the elements but also the rigors of time itself. Properly maintained, a Barbour jacket can literally be passed down through generations, each wearer adding another layer to its rich history.

Section 2: Diving Into the Barbour Beaufort

Revisiting a Classic: Features and Overview

The Barbour Beaufort is the epitome of the classic British countryside jacket, engineered for the great outdoors. Made with medium-weight waxed cotton, this full-length coat is not just sturdy but also water-resistant. Its spacious cut gives you the flexibility to layer underneath, offering both freedom of movement and comfort.

Key Highlights:

  • Pocket Variety: Beyond the standard two large bellows pockets, the Beaufort adds two moleskin-lined pockets to keep your hands warm on chilly days, plus a rear game pocket for added convenience.
  • Signature Corduroy Collar: A Barbour staple, the lush corduroy collar does double duty, offering a splash of style and a comfy, warm fit.
  • Robust Zipper and Protective Storm Flap: A sturdy zipper coupled with a snap-button storm flap provides optimal protection against unpredictable weather.
  • Customization Options: This model allows for zip-in liners and hoods from Barbour, letting you adapt the jacket to various weather conditions and your own style preferences.

The Story Behind the Coat: Beaufort’s Heritage and Roots

Initially conceived by Barbour’s chairman in 1983, the Beaufort jacket swiftly rose to prominence as a foundational piece in the Barbour lineup. Originally crafted with anglers and hunters in mind, this jacket has, over the years, broken free from its rural roots. It has captured the hearts of city folk as well, thanks to its seamless mix of utility and timeless elegance.

The Barbour Beaufort continues to be manufactured in South Shields, England, staying true to its original blueprint. Its enduring popularity stands as a testament to its flawless fusion of style and substance. This makes the Beaufort a go-to option not just for outdoor adventurers but also for anyone in search of a long-lasting, versatile jacket that can withstand the tests of both time and trend.

Section 3: Unveiling the Barbour Bedale

The Fusion of Chic and Utility: Attributes and Highlights

The Barbour Bedale brings together the best of both worlds, blending style and functionality in a package that’s distinctly modern yet timeless. Although it shares several traits with its predecessor, the Beaufort, the Bedale stands out with its abbreviated length and a somewhat leaner silhouette, making it equally suited for rural and urban environments.

Key elements of the Bedale are:

  • Compact Form: The shorter length of the Bedale ensures greater freedom of movement, ideal for activities requiring agility.
  • Toasty Handwarmer Pockets: Much like its older sibling, the Bedale also features moleskin-lined handwarmer pockets, a godsend for cold days.
  • Designed for Movement: Raglan sleeves enhance the freedom of movement, serving the needs of an active lifestyle.
  • Weatherproof Accents: The storm cuffs and the iconic Barbour corduroy collar combine to offer additional warmth and coziness.
  • Flexibility: The Bedale’s design supports Barbour’s zip-in liners and optional hoods, making it a truly adaptable garment for different weather conditions.

From Riding Boots to City Loafers: The Bedale’s Evolution

Conceived in the early ’80s as an equestrian-focused jacket, the Bedale was essentially a shorter, more rider-friendly version of the Beaufort. Named after an English countryside town renowned for its hunting and horseback riding, the Bedale aimed to serve the riding community with features such as its truncated length and a vented back for riding ease.

However, the jacket quickly transcended its equestrian origins to become a universal favorite. Its blend of practical features with fashionable aesthetics appealed to city-dwellers and outdoor aficionados in equal measure, rapidly turning it into one of Barbour’s most iconic and widely-recognized offerings.

The Bedale’s broad-ranging appeal is a nod to Barbour’s knack for innovation that respects tradition. Whether you’re cantering through country fields or striding down metropolitan sidewalks, the Bedale has proven itself to be a versatile piece that can adapt to a variety of settings, tastes, and activities.

Section 4: Aesthetic Appeal and Styling

Beaufort: The Classic Countryside Elegance

Visual Flair, Palette, and Fashion Sense
The Beaufort captures the quintessence of British rural style with its conventional cut and extended silhouette. Its design elements, from the corduroy collar to the ample pockets and iconic waxed cotton material, are timeless Barbour staples. You can pick from an array of hues, from classic olive and navy to more nature-inspired colors like rustic and bark, tailoring your choice to your individual taste or the setting you’ll be exploring.

Outfit Ideas and Suitable Environments
The Beaufort tends to skew more toward the formal side of casual wear. It blends seamlessly with corduroy pants, dark denim, and leather boots, encapsulating the quintessential British country attire. The jacket is versatile enough for a variety of outdoor endeavors, whether you’re planning a hunting trip, going fishing, or just sauntering through the countryside.

Bedale: The Intersection of Utility and Trendiness

Visual Elements, Color Palette, and Style
The Bedale infuses a modern twist into the traditional Barbour look. Its shorter stature and narrower fit add a contemporary vibe while retaining classic features like the waxed cotton and corduroy collar. Available colors such as sage, navy, and black offer an array of choices for the style-conscious individual.

Go-to Outfit Combinations and Ideal Settings
The Bedale’s design is versatile enough to pair with both laid-back and more polished looks. It works well with slim jeans, Chelsea boots, or even everyday sneakers, making it a superb choice for urban settings. Its compact design also makes it well-suited for a multitude of activities, from city outings to short countryside trips.

The Verdict: Adaptability and Style Points

When it comes to flexibility, the Barbour Bedale has a slight upper hand due to its modern fit and ability to blend into diverse environments. It can smoothly transition from a day at the office to an evening social gathering.

From a fashion standpoint, both jackets have their strengths. The Beaufort is for those who appreciate the allure of ageless sophistication, while the Bedale appeals more to a youthful or trend-savvy crowd with its abbreviated length and updated silhouette.

In summary, both jackets are enduring symbols of Barbour’s long-standing tradition of excellent craftsmanship. Your ultimate choice should hinge on your personal lifestyle demands and sartorial preferences.

Section 5: Fabric and Build Quality

Beaufort: A Testament to Time-Honored Craftsmanship

Materials and Construction Standards
Constructed from 6oz waxed cotton, the Barbour Beaufort boasts a durable yet supple fabric that conforms to your body as it ages. The seams, fastenings, and buttons are meticulously crafted, designed to endure routine use and the rigors of time. The interior often features a tartan lining, comprised of a cotton-polyester blend, marrying comfort with longevity.

Performance Against the Elements
The wax-coated cotton exterior serves as an effective shield against varying weather conditions, including wind and rain. The coat’s full-length stature provides an added safeguard against the elements. Moreover, its heavy-duty zipper and snap-button storm flap further amplify its weather-resistant qualities, ensuring you remain dry and cozy even in inclement weather.

Bedale: The Intersection of Contemporary Design and historical Heritage

Materials and Construction Standards
Like the Beaufort, the Bedale is fashioned from 6oz waxed cotton, albeit in a more abbreviated form. It upholds the same level of material and construction excellence, promising a garment that will mature gracefully while preserving its functional integrity. The Bedale also showcases a tartan interior lining, made from a similar cotton-polyester mixture.

Performance Against the Elements
The Bedale’s waxed cotton fabric renders it highly effective in repelling elements like rain and wind. Nonetheless, its shorter length may leave the lower torso more exposed, something to consider depending on your specific requirements. Its sturdy zipper and storm flap contribute to its weather-defensive features.

Comparative Analysis: Longevity and Weather-Proofing

Both the Beaufort and the Bedale adhere to high-quality standards in durability and resistance to weather, owing to the 6oz waxed cotton and superior workmanship. That said, the Beaufort’s elongated design grants it a marginal advantage when it comes to all-around protection from the elements.

In terms of longevity, the two are closely matched, though the Beaufort may have a slight edge due to its more comprehensive construction and length, especially if you anticipate regular exposure to challenging weather.

In conclusion, both jackets are engineered to withstand the test of time and, with proper care such as regular waxing, are likely to only improve as they age.

Section 6: Versatility and Features

Beaufort: Engineered for Practicality

Pocket Layout, Fastenings, and Special Attributes
The Beaufort is teeming with storage options, boasting two expansive front bellows pockets with snap fastenings, a pair of moleskin-lined handwarmer pockets, and an additional game pocket at the back. Its robust zipper and protective storm flap are built to brave harsh weather and stand up to years of frequent use. A distinctive aspect of the Beaufort is its optional zip-in liner, offering added warmth for the colder seasons.

Daily Utility and Practical Application
Thanks to its abundant pocket real estate and adjustable design elements, the Beaufort shines in its practicality for a broad range of outdoor pursuits such as hunting, fishing, and trekking. Its extended length adds another layer of protection against the elements, making it well-suited for longer durations outdoors.

Bedale: Where Versatility Aligns with Design

Pockets, Zippers, and Unique Features
The Bedale jacket comes equipped with ample storage options, robust zippers, and signature touches like its corduroy collar. Additionally, the jacket features rear vents to facilitate better mobility and comfort, making it highly adaptable for activities such as riding where leg flexibility is important. Similar to the Beaufort, the Bedale supports Barbour’s zip-in liners and detachable hoods for a customizable experience.

Everyday Practicality
The Bedale stands out for its practical design that is easy to navigate in. Its rear vents serve a dual purpose—providing both a classic look and functional advantages like improved airflow and ease of movement when sitting or bending.

Comparison: Which Jacket Takes the Lead in Functionality?

In the realm of functionality, both jackets provide ample pocket space, reliable fastenings, and the option for further customization with zip-in liners and hoods. The Beaufort comes with a game pocket that is particularly appealing for outdoor sporting activities. In contrast, the Bedale shines in day-to-day versatility, courtesy of its rear vents that enhance comfort and freedom of movement for more active individuals or situations requiring a greater range of motion.

Section 7: Concluding Thoughts and Tailored Recommendations

After thoroughly comparing the Barbour Beaufort and the Barbour Bedale, it becomes evident that each jacket excels in its own way. They both bring a unique mix of robustness, practical features, and enduring style that sets them apart from most alternatives. So how do you choose between these two exceptional jackets?

Here’s the chart comparing the Barbour Beaufort and Bedale jackets across three key factors:

Barbour Beaufort vs Bedale jackets comparison chart

Summary of Critical Comparison Aspects:

  • Aesthetic Appeal and Styling: Both jackets score equally high in this category with a score of 9. While the Beaufort exemplifies classical British countryside elegance, the Bedale brings a modern twist to this traditional style. This makes both jackets highly appealing but to different demographics.
  • Fabric and Build Quality: The Beaufort has a slight edge in this category with a score of 9, compared to Bedale’s 8.5. This is mainly because the Beaufort’s elongated design provides better all-around protection against the elements.
  • Versatility and Features: The Bedale takes a slight lead here with a score of 9 against Beaufort’s 8. The Bedale is more versatile, suitable for a broader range of activities and environments, courtesy of its rear vents and modern fit.

Consumer-Specific Recommendations:

  • For Outdoor Enthusiasts: If you partake in pursuits like hunting, fishing, or hiking, the Beaufort’s longer length and additional storage make it your ideal partner.
  • For the All-Rounder: If you require a jacket that transitions smoothly between urban and rural landscapes, the Bedale offers this versatility.

In the final analysis, either jacket is a winning choice. Your decision will hinge on your individual lifestyle, requirements, and aesthetic preferences. Regardless of your pick, both the Barbour Beaufort and Barbour Bedale stand as superior options that withstand the tests of time and use.


Each jacket is awesome in its own way, so your pick really depends on what you’re looking for. If you’re all about that classic, enduring style and you want a jacket that can stand up to whatever the weather throws at you, then the Beaufort’s got your back. On the flip side, if you’re someone who likes to switch things up and wants a jacket that can go from the office to a night out, the Bedale is more your speed.

So whether you’re gearing up for a fancy outdoor shindig or just need something versatile for your everyday hustle, both the Beaufort and Bedale have got something to offer. At the end of the day, it’s all about what fits your life and your look.

Best waxed Jacket comparison : Filson Tin Cloth Cruiser vs Barbour Ashby


Stan is an adventure enthusiast with a love for the outdoors and American heritage brands like Red Wing and Filson. With a background in environmental science, Stan combines his outdoor experiences with a commitment to sustainability. His reviews go beyond functionality, exploring the brand ethos and craftsmanship. Stan inspires readers to choose gear that's durable, environmentally responsible, and true to American craftsmanship, making his advice indispensable for outdoor aficionados.

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