Zappos never lets me down - I received the North Face "Allena" trench today and popped it on immediately to see how things went.
Color: Somewhere between SSB and caramel. Not the worst beige on me, but not the best color ever. Would be better with a flattering colored top or scarf.
Form/Fit: I followed the North Face sizing chart, and I'd say it is perfectly true to size. It does not look gigantic on me, yet I can layer a thick polar fleece jacket underneath with no pulling or strain. I like that the waist sits lower than my J. Crew trench. Sleeves are nice and long, too. The back is also pretty nicely cut and does not form a huge, baggy bubble as many trenches I tried last year had done. It does however feel big when left open, probably due to the fabric. Drapes like gear, not like fashion.
Function: I believe it is truly breathable. It is 70F here today, and I did some pushups and crunches in it without feeling clammy. I also like the zip pocket placed between the inner zipper and the buttons (pic 4). This would have been *wonderful* for travel, providing for security but also allowing access to quick cash or a Metro pass without opening up the coat all the way. The hood is good and doesn't feel like it will slide off while walking. The real major downside is that the belt is way to short to tie in a slipknot the way I like. Seems like it stays okay with just a quick twist, but not sure if it would after continued movement.
Compared to color of the J. Crew Icon trench shown in pics 6-7.
Overall Impression for Me: I am very torn. It won't pass as a Burberry or anything, but it's so functional and fits well. Part of me wants to keep it, but not so much that I don't want to get the olive one I've bid on. This one would be perfect for Serious Rain, I think, but how often do I encounter that? And is a hood and extra breathability enough to make it my Only Trench, bumping out the J. Crew and my rust Scottevest trench? I just don't know.