Karolina Kurkova

There's a trick to pulling together a look that's preppy and polished, but not stuffy. For a stunning example of how to achieve that subtly undone style, consider Karolina Kurkova's ensemble at a recent screening of This Must Be The Place in New York. The model's mix of classic separates is worn with I'm-not-trying-too-hard appeal, and the outcome feels decidedly chic and modern. For example, Kurkova's traditional plaid Madewell blazer gets the casual treatment with rolled-up sleeves, but it still exudes collegiate charm teamed with an impeccable Thom Browne oxford shirt, Mother skinny jeans, and glossy brown Chelsea boots. The fit overall is important--everything is really slim, even the belt! Want to know exactly Why It Works? Continue reading for more outfit details and learn how to get the look below. Blazer: Dress down a plaid blazer by leaving the cuffs unbuttoned and pushing the sleeves up to your elbows.
Similar Essentials McQ Alexander McQueen Tailored Plaid Blazer ($995); Capulet Collegiate Plaid Blazer ($224); Gap Plaid Academy Blazer ($98).

Shirt: The timeless oxford shirt gets updated with a contrasting Peter Pan collar.
Similar Essentials Comme Des Garcons Peter Pan Collar Shirt ($370); 10 Crosby Derek Lam Double Collar Colorblock Blouse ($355); Equipment Sophie Shirt ($314).

Pants: Team cuffed jeans with your polished, preppy pieces for laid-back contrast.
Similar Essentials J Brand 910 Skinny Jeans ($174); Gap 1969 Always Skinny Jeans ($70); Genetic Denim The Shane Cigarette Skinny Jeans ($70).

Belt: A colorful skinny belt helps break up neutral separates.
Similar Essentials Anthropologie Shimmer Edge Skinny Belt ($38); Linea Pelle Studded Skinny Belt ($28) in Mid Brown; Pieces Bisa Skinny Belt ($18).

Boots: Reveal a sliver of bare ankle with short Chelsea boots in a tobacco color that contrasts the jacket's black tones.
Similar Essentials ASOS ABACUS Leather Chelsea Ankle Boots ($70); BDG Leather Chelsea Boots ($69) in Brown; Need Supply Co. Chelsea Ankle Boots ($68).--Tiffany Tse

Photo of Karolina Kurkova, courtesy of Getty Images.