TIP #1: Style a slim, knit dress with an equally chic bag.
Claudia Schiffer's personal style never fails to knock us out. From the '70s-inspired combos she favors for daytime errands to the bombshell dresses she wears for evening events, the supermodel is always enviably attired. Late last month during Milan Fashion Week, we spotted Schiffer in yet another look we love, this time a slim sweater dressÂ--specifically Salvatore Ferragamo's Wool Multicolor Bronze Knit Dress ($870, 212.754.5200)Â--in a yummy cocoa color. Her selection is refined, completely current, and looks marvelous styled with our favorite new accessory, the Ferragamo W Bag ($2850) in a complementary chocolate suede and saddle leather combination. If you're seeking a less pricey alternative to Schiffer's sweet selection, we've found a few options for you. Ralph Lauren Blue Label's Turtleneck Sweater Dress ($398) in Autumn Heather is one excellent choice, or you could pick up The Limited's Cowl Sweater Dress ($80) in Mocha Brown. Additionally, we highly recommend checking out Talbots' Turtleneck Sweater Dress ($149), which comes in a number of wonderfully rich colors!
TIP #2: Wear a ladylike jacket with your worn-in skinnies.
Ladylike dressing is one of the most buzzed about trends for fall, but that doesn't mean it's all kitten heels and full skirts. You can still hint at your girly side by simply incorporating a sophisticated, tailored, feminine jacket into your wardrobe. In addition to wearing the ladylike jacket with a classic pencil skirt, you can always give this key piece a downtown twist by pairing it with your favorite distressed skinny jeans, as model Veronica Varekova did at the premiÃ¨re of Stone at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City earlier this month. To approximate her outfit, finding an equally refined and demure jacket is essential. Fortunately, your options aren't Chanel or nothing; there are lots of reasonably priced styles out there. As for the ones that top our list, be sure to check out J. Crew's Tweed Tatum Jacket ($278), Topshop's PU Trim Tweed Cropped Jacket ($135), and By Malene Birger's Jasmina Tweed Jacket ($635). The latter is a bit more of an investment, but it's definitely worth it! Style any of these options with your favorite worn-in skinny jeansÂ--bonus points if they're a great gray colorÂ--and you'll have an MOD-inspired outfit you're sure to love.
TIP #3: Mix a prim top with a racier leather skirt.
We love the new minimalism trend, especially when it's executed perfectly. For an uber-chic example of how to wear it, we suggest taking a look at the lovely Rashida Jones and the impeccable ensemble she wore to Proenza Schouler's S/S 11 show in New York last month. Jones paired a Proenza Schouler Button Down Shirt ($490) with the label's black leather skirt, Rag & Bone Harrow Boots ($450, 212.278.8214), and a classic Helmut Lang overcoat for an outfit that's understated, cool, and seriously chicÂ--much like the actress herself! To emulate this fabulous fall ensemble, you simply need a few easy pieces, starting with Cynthia Steffe's Pleated Leather Skirt ($395). Pair the swirly leather skirt with a crisp and classic white button-up shirt, like Theory's Larissa Top ($190) or Character Hero's Pleated Back Button-Down Tunic ($54), and a timeless overcoat (ASOS White's Elbow Crombie Coat ($202) and Whistles' Celeste Crombie Coat ($379) are both great options), and you'll be well on your way to getting Jones' must-try look!
TIP #4: Pair bold cocktail shorts with sleek and solid neutrals.
One of our key shopping mantras is to make sure whatever we buy can we worn in multiple ways and for a number of occasions, which is why we were so excited to see jewelry designer/society swan Eugenie Niarchos demonstrating the versatility of a great pair of cocktail shorts. Snapped at the Moncler fashion show in Paris a couple of weeks ago, Niarchos paired her tiger-print cocktail shorts with a simple camel sweater, black tights, and ankle boots for a terrific transitional outfit. To mimic her statement style, pick up either Dallin Chase's Chester Animal Print Shorts ($122) or ASOS' Leopard Print Jersey Culottes ($27) and style them with matte opaque tights and a simple, neutral, solid-colored sweater or top for a fresh daytime look.
TIP # 5: Break out the black lace for evening events.
While black lace used to conjure up visions of gothic princesses, lately designers are making this material look more elegant by using it to create incredibly striking cocktail dresses. Take Carey Mulligan, for example: last month at a special screening of Never Let Me Go at the Tribeca Grand Hotel, the actress looked memorizing in a black lace Elie Saab frock from the F/W 10 collection. We love the fact that Mulligan's pick has a peek-a-boo bodice; it makes the full-skirted silhouette a little more modern. If you're ready to add a little lace to your next night-out ensemble, we have some suggestions for you! Topshop's Peter Pan Swing Lace Dress ($100) has three-quarter length sleeves that are quite nice, or you could go for Winter Kate's Anais Mini Lace Dress ($165), which features a high neckline and a body-conscious fit. Want something that has a touch more of Mulligan's fifties vibe? Try the full-skirted Solid Lace Neck Dress (98) by Free People; it definitely has a likeminded vintage spirit. If you'd rather just add a lace blouse to your favorite skirt or trousers, we have three recommendations for you as well: Equipment's Lace Crescendo Blouse ($188), Nasty Gal's Lace Sweetheart Top ($45), or Tibi's Short-Sleeved Lace Top ($230). Each style is slightly different, so you're sure to find the perfect pick for your personal style!
TIP #6: Be sure to buy a classic camel coat this fall.
If there's one outerwear essential for fall, it's definitely the camel coat. This timeless staple is sure to work with anyone's wardrobeÂ--no matter what your personal style is like! In addition to complimenting fall's ladylike and minimalist looks, the camel coat is also an excellent partner for more casual outfits, as Alexa Chung so deftly demonstrates. Spotted earlier this month leaving the a preview party at Channel 4 in London, Chung looked ever-so-cute in her own Alexa Chung for Madewell Greta Coat ($275) in Sawdust with Karen Walker's Balloon Sweatshirt ($136), skinnies, red ballet flats, and a mahogany Louis Vuitton Sofia Coppola Bag ($3730, 866.VUITTON). While there are lots of designer iterations this season, as we've discussed, you donÂ't need to invest your life's savings to get a similarly cool coat. Whistles' Deanne Double Breasted Coat ($328) is a great option, as is Ann Taylor's Double Breasted Coat ($398); either one will look current for seasons to come!
Photos of Claudia Schiffer and Carey Mulligan, courtesy of Getty; Photos of Veronica Varekova, Rashida Jones, Eugenie Niarchos, and Alexa Chung, courtesy of Splash