When Autumn comes, often the most underrated accessory is a great coat. Not because we don’t love them, but because it literally becomes a part of every outfit. This though, is the very reason why we should contemplate and prize our choice in outerwear. The selection of a coat can impact one’s entire wardrobe, complement any outfit and aid in a smooth transition from day to night, making the runway’s preferred wool coat this season, the unicorn of Fall fashion.


When choosing your ideal coat, pay attention to the basics, 1.) does it keep the chill at bay 2.) does it reflect your personality. The latter is especially important given that it will cloak you in style even when you’re popping out to the convenience store in sweats. Aside from the basics, we suggest modern cuts and neutral tones to complement the season’s trends and those glorious falling leaves.

The Coveted: Céline’s moody beiges are perfect for a stroll in the park with a Bouchon pastry and coffee in hand.
The Steal: Mango always has a basic shape with a stylish twist on the season’s runway favourites.

The Trend: Western

Ranch hand style has been all the rage this season, with even Karl Lagerfeld transplanting his runway to Dallas, Texas earlier this year for his Pre-Fall 2014 show.

This trend is for the most sophisticated of horse riders, with classic western style inserted into fine fashion. Look for Navaho patterns, tassels galore and vests upon vests. Suitable for day or night, the looks dominating the runway showed off class and a tailored dose of masculine charm in womenswear looks — think scarf ties reminiscent of Wyatt Earp.


Don’t wait to get to the back country, make western prints and decals an everyday component of your wardrobe by pairing with basic blacks and heels, and watch the cowboys come a running.

The Coveted: Anything from Chanel’s Pre-Fall collection.
The Steal: Topshop’s western prints.

The Trend: FUR

Nothing looks quite as chic as fur, faux or real. For Fall, the best way to make any look more riche is with the addition of a fur collar; it goes with everything and anything. Get creative with a detachable collar over a cardigan, or stick to the classic coat with a fur collar already built in. For fashion enthusiasts, excel at wearing the trend in a coat with embellished fur lapels.


The Coveted: Etro’s grey coat.
The Steal: Michael Kors. Still fancy, but at a less intimidating price tag.

The Trend: LEATHER

It’s been on the essential list for a while now, but leather is a transformative fabric this season, taking the form of colourful skirting, dresses, tops and edgy accents. And since mixing textures and fabric is what the FW ’14 season is all about, the perfect leather jacket to accentuate your edge, is as smart a fashion investment as a dramatically coloured leather dress.

As for the leather biker jacket, it’s upping it’s game this fall turning away from basic black and gaining fans with its variety of coloured renditions. Cut and style are the wearer’s choice, but we say slim and fitted with zippers up the sleeves make even a cocktail dress look sharp, especially when that ensemble consists of Hugo BOSS’s leather and tartan combinations courtesy of the label’s new Artistic Director, Jason Wu.


Best of all, dressed in leather separates with a biker jacket slug over your shoulder, you’ll be prepared for that impromptu motorcycle ride with the handsome rebel you’ve been awaiting. You know what they say, prepare for the life you want.

The Coveted: Balenciaga blue motorcycle jacket.
The Steal: H&M has many versions that aren’t real leather, but look just as cute.

The Trend: VELVET

This decadent fabric can often be overused — or improperly utilized — leaving the wearer looking like they’ve escaped from Hogwarts. Take your cue from the runway, and look for the plush fabric in understated designs. Considering the play velvet is getting this season, the addition to your closet will instantly raise you to the ranks of the fashionable elite. While we have our eye on the feminine dresses seen going down the runway — Cushnie et Ochs’s blue velvet number being a favouite —should separates be your thing, be sure to downplay the rest of the outfit with cute flats or a blazer for daytime wear to avoid any misgiving as to your aptitude for magic.


Most of all, enjoy the cozy touch of the fabric against your skin; it’s rare fashion is this comfortable. Just think: who needs a Snuggie when you have a floor grazing Louis Vuitton velvet dress?

The Coveted: Understated navy Christopher Kane loop dress.
The Steal: Zara velvet basics, particularly the velvet overalls.

Published September 3, 2014