Winter is officially here. For you, it may mean the snow has fallen, turning your once easy morning stroll to your car into a snow boot-wearing tiptoe through ice and slush. Or, it may mean that the wind is so cold and fierce on your walk home from work that you have to create a face mask out of your meant-to-be-statement scarf. Or, it may mean you can’t figure out if 65 degrees means coat, sweater or tee shirt weather (after all, they weren’t kidding when they said your blood would thin).
Whatever winter may look like for you, it can be a fashion challenge. Your easy-to-navigate spring and summer outfits are no longer, as you attempt to maintain a sense of style while masking a fear of getting legit frostbite during a night out on the town. So, what can we do to stay both haute and … hot (and by hot I mean warm!)? How do we layer sweaters and turtlenecks under thick winter coats and remain somewhat fashionable? It’s not always easy to look put together and stay warm, but it’s doable. I have some helpful tips to take your winter wardrobe from basic to badass.
When the cold days come around, it is only human nature to navigate toward clothing that is casual, comfortable, and loose-fitting. After all, no one wants to be in thin jeggings when it feels like a hurricane-force of arctic wind. That is why I suggest pairing a loose-fitting item with more a fitted one. Imagine a pair of tight leather pants with an oversized patterned sweater. The pants still give your outfit some sass, but the longer shirt will, well, save your ass (let’s be honest, there is nothing worse than having a cold bum). Conversely, you can pair a slimming turtleneck with a pair of high waisted, wide-leg wool pants. Your bottom half will stay warm as can be, and when you remove that overcoat, the turtleneck will keep your outfit looking chic and feminine.
I suggest pairing a loose-fitting item with more a fitted one.
Ok, I know that fur – like animal print – is not for everyone. It can feel cheesy and overdone when not worn with class. But, when worn correctly, fur is an easy and efficient way to look sophisticated and stylish while keeping your bod warm. I love a good faux fur coat. I have several in different styles and shades, and every time I pair one with a day dress and boots, skinny jeans and pumps or and evening jumpsuit, I always feel like my outfit gets the little extra push of posh it needs. And, lucky for us, they have become reachable for everyone with designers like Yves Salomon and Max Mara making more affordable, but still attractive faux fur coats. Worried that a coat may be too far of a first leap into the land of faux fur? Try bringing some fur out in an accessory like a fur-lined scarf, a pair of fur mittens, or even some fun fur earmuffs. I promise, your style will shoot sky high while your body temperature stays sufficiently warm.
Give your outfit the little push of posh it needs.
With snow and slush, it is very easy to get caught in a boot rut. After all, we don’t want to ruin a beautiful pair of leather or suede boots because of a pesky puddle. Lucky for us, this winter season has brought back a Northerner’s snug staple during the snowy, frigid months. I like to think of it as the updated version of the basic L.L. Bean boot that’s all-weather and all-awesome. Every designer, from luxury brands such as Gucci to up-and-coming brands like Sorel, have created boots that are not just durable and warm, but also fashion friendly. So, invest in a pair this season and take the basic out of your boots. Your fair-weather fabric boots will thank you.
Take the basic out of your boots.
We spend so much time and money on trendy scarves and such that we often overlook one of winter’s warmest and most stylish accessories. Nothing adds a little something extra to your lost-in-the-layers get up like an extravagant, but elegant, haute hat. No, I don’t mean a Gucci-esque baseball cap, I mean a beautiful piece that is the cream of your crop, the icing on your cake. If you want to make a style statement when the temps reach glacial lows, think of your hat as the finishing touch that tailors your look and keeps that oh-so-important crown of yours warm. Plus, don’t you want everyone looking at your best attribute anyway? Your face is the canvas to your look, so why not keep the attention on it by adding a fabulously fashionable hat?
A beautiful hat is the icing to your cake.
As the days seem to get darker and darker, so can our winter wardrobe’s color palette. For some reason, we all tend to gravitate toward black, gray, and brown during the colder months. It is as if we feel like we should match the sometimes dismal days of winter. Blah.
So, what if we went out of our dreary color comfort zone and added a pop of something decidedly different than dark? Something unexpected and eye-catching, that took your monochromatic look and wired in some pizazz? A neon, a red, a jewel tone.
The good news is that any and all bright and bold colors work with a dark palette, and, much like your mood after the first sunny spring day, they will bring a little bounce into your weary winter wardrobe.
Can’t completely lose the black from your look? Like fur, a pop of color for accessories will give just as much value as a colorful solid top or bottom.