Much to my surprise, one of the biggest changes when I moved from L.A. to NYC was not social, financial, or professional—it was sartorial. Not sure why I wasn’t expecting this, but I guess I figured that the coastal cities shared the same brand of fashion sense. How different could the weather be, I wondered? Boy, was I wrong. Little did I know two years ago that aside from casting aside countless pieces from my wardrobe—a story for another day—I’d also be adding several things to my rotation in order to adjust to life in the big city. Keep reading to find out what they are…
1. Tote Bags
When you don’t own a car, you also don’t have a place to store things throughout your day. I’m talking your work laptop, extra shoes, clothes to take to the dry cleaner or tailor—anything else the day might throw at you, really. Thus, whether it’s a promotional bag or one of my trusty designer versions, I usually have a tote on my shoulder.
Ironically, tote life also goes hand in hand with carrying a mini bag just small enough to hold all your essentials for a walk to lunch. Read: It has to be small enough to fit into your tote during the day.
So. Many. Sneakers.
While almost two years later, I have yet to get used to all the walking around I do, I have managed to accept the fact that sneakers make it exponentially easier. Not only are you more comfortable while you’re doing it, but the sensible footwear choice also eases the stress of potentially ruining your favorite boots on a rainy day or your go-to heels on an unexpectedly long walk.
Can you believe I never owned a real coat during the 20-something years I lived in Los Angeles? My warmest outwear option was probably a leather jacket—I really never needed more than that—but now my closet is literally overflowing with puffers, parkas, and peacoats for the real cold that comes along with fall and winter on the East Coast.
Available in sizes XS to XL.
Available in sizes P to L.
Available in sizes 0 to 14.
Available in sizes XS to L.
Dresses, skirts, bags, just-the-right-height-shoes, and more—if it goes from day to night, owning it will make things a lot easier for you in New York City. Heading home to change is not as convenient as it was back when I lived in L.A., so whether I’m running errands on the weekend or heading into the office, it’s always a good idea to wear things that can easily transition.
Available in sizes XS to L.
Available in sizes DK34 to DK42.
Back in Los Angeles, I could pretty much get away with any shoe style any time (my personal favorite was the kitten heel). However, I’ve found that when sneakers aren’t appropriate, it’s best to stick with a block heel in New York. I always prefer some height to totally flat shoes, and block heels are easy to walk in and will last longer than most skinnier heel options.
Up next? My favorite simple outfit ideas for fall.