Turtlenecks have seen some pretty iconic on-screen moments throughout the years, from Audrey Hepburn's black turtleneck in Funny Face to Marcia Brady's bright iterations on The Brady Bunch to Molly Ringwald's infamous neck-hugging pink prom dress in Pretty in Pink. Turtlenecks have made plenty of waves in the real world too and are currently entering the spotlight anew, thanks to a little help from some of our favorite fashionable femmes! Whether you wear it with a statement choker (a la Margherita Missoni and Solange Knowles) or use it as a layering piece (like Vanessa Traina and Alexa Chung), just make sure your closet is equipped with this key item for fall!
As today's featured ladies so aptly demonstrate, the great thing about the turtleneck is that this high-collared item can be worn in a variety of ways. That said, one of our favorite styling tricks comes to us via Solange Knowles, Margherita Missoni, and Eugenie Niarchos, who drew attention to their turtlenecks by styling them with statement necklaces. Knowles was snapped at the C. Wonder Flagship store opening in New York earlier this year wearing a blue and yellow plaid Suno Dolman Turtleneck ($140) paired with an asymmetric pencil skirt, Rodarte wedges, and a gold medallion necklace. The large necklace adds further interest to her mix of printed pieces, while keeping the focus on her shirt's conservative neckline. A month later, at the Missoni for Target Pop-Up Launch held in New York, we noticed that Margherita Missoni chose to spotlight the high neckline of her pink Missoni for Target top with jewelry as well. She opted for a silver choker-a covetable piece she picked up in Laos-for a truly fashionable and on-point look. We are also pleased with the way designer/model Eugenie Niarchos elevated her green leopard-print turtleneck dress with a tribal-inspired necklace at the Emilio Pucci S/S 12 show two months ago. The finished ensemble is everything you'd expect from Niarchos: eye-catching and interesting.
If high-impact accessories aren't your thing, take a page from Vanessa Traina and Alexa Chung's lookbooks and use your turtleneck as a chic layering piece. The former caught our eye at the RXArt party back in September when she wore a white Celine turtleneck under a black spaghetti-strap top, demonstrating how these long-sleeved, neck-hugging shirts are perfect for transitioning your summery tops into the cold-weather months. Chung, on the other hand, opted for a black turtleneck and made it her own by pairing it with a Proenza Schouler striped dress from the F/W 10 collection and Chloe's Snake Pumps ($695) for the ANDAM PARIS Fashion Week dinner last month. Thanks to her limited accessories, the resulting look has an of-the-moment, mod-like feel that's universally appealing and fit for a number of occasions this season. Not surprisingly, Traina and Chung aren't the only one executing this smart layered look. Backstage at BCBG'S F/W 11 show, designer Max Azria styled the Brynne Turtle Neck Top ($98, 212.717.4225) under both the red strapless Tabitha Dress ($378, 212.717.4225) and a black knee-length tank dress (which was sadly not produced), resulting in two unexpectedly chic evening looks.
Now that you're familiar with how some of fashion's elite are wearing turtlenecks, it's time to pick up a few of your own! If you would like to try a simple turtleneck dress, we suggest checking out Michael Stars' Shine Shirred Turtleneck Dress ($88) or Rachel Pally's Chunky Turtleneck Sweater Dress ($286); either one would be a chic choice for a dinner with friends or the office. For those of you who are feeling a bit more adventurous, don't miss J.C. Henrik Vibskov's Long Turtleneck ($213) in Dirty Print; just be sure to style it with Ben Amun's Linked Silver Choker ($186) or Dannijo for Vena Cava's Naomi Necklace ($172) for an after-hours ensemble inspired by Knowles, Missoni, and Eugenie.
If you are a fan of today's layered looks, you'll be happy to know that we've found the essential necessities to execute a similar ensemble. We like the idea of pairing Gap's Knit Turtleneck ($35) with Jessica Simpson's Strapless Cotton Maxi Dress ($88) in Blue or Black for an easy runway-to-real-way outfit. If that's not the combo you're looking for, you can always try American Glamour Badgley Mischka's Brushed Lace Turtleneck ($78) or Theory's Galin Loyrelle Long Sleeve Turtleneck Sweater ($275). Simply team either option with The Limited's Wide Waistband Pencil Skirt ($30) for an outfit that will take you from day to night with ease!-Johnni Macke
Photos of Alexa Chung and Solange Knowles, courtesy of Billy Farrell Agency; Photo of Eugenie Niarchos, courtesy of Getty; Photo of Vanessa Traina, courtesy of Wire Image; BCBG Backstage image, courtesy of First View.