"I will be relocating to Chicago and need an overcoat. I'm interested in Hickey Freeman's camel hair polo coat. Is 18 oz fabric heavy enough for Chicago's winter weather?"
A topcoat is lighter than an overcoat, and it's meant for milder weather. 18 ounce fabric is the heavy end of topcoat cloth. That weight would be OK for brief exposure to the elements but you will want an overcoat if you're going to spend any significant Chicago winter time out of doors.
I actually grew up in Chicago and lived there briefly after I finished school. One winter we had a week of minus 80 degrees wind chill weather and I was walking to my office downtown each day. As soon as possible thereafter my wife and I moved to San Francisco.
Overcoats for winter weather are usually 21 or 22 ounces. They can be even heavier - I believe the old Meltons were 27 ounce fabric. If you'll be outside much, look for something heavier than 18 ounces.
Sunday, June 10, 2007