Turn drab into fab: tips for updating your winter style

Style is an individual experience, while fashion is strategically artistic. Of course, we want both, even when cold temperatures threaten to keep us under the covers! We want to dress for the weather, but could we maybe also borrow just a little from the creative minds of our favorite designers? Please? Permission granted! Let's learn how to mix and match what you already know with the winter style secrets the pros use.

Find a high quality layer to build upon. “Quality” being the most important word in that sentence. Long underwear in silk or synthetics are your best options. From there you'll want a long sleeve tee, shaped if you want to show off your figure or if you just need it to be a bit more snug, relaxed if your look requires a bit of flow and movement. You'll want to top it off with a cashmere cardigan sweater. This allows you to take a layer off when you are hot and easily throw it back on when you (or the weather) cool back down, perfect for days that often start and end with a chill. Best winter top for the job? Cashmere? Supima Cotton? Merino Wool? Sherpa Fleece? Yes! Yes! Yes! And yes please!

Top off your top side with a down coat or jacket that compliments the outfit you have on underneath. Your pants should be a well fitting style that follows the tone set by your tops. If the fit is great, you're going to look and feel great. Slim-leg jeans are a must to balance out a flowy cardigan or gorgeous cashmere poncho. Pull-on skinny jeans are even better, because the waist is more forgiving. You'll want warm winter socks. Lean toward wool socks or well-designed boot socks to give you all of the warmth without the sweat.

For all practical purposes you'll need two sets of shoes for any one outfit: a pair to get you where you are going, and a pair to wear once you get there. Your winter street feet will rely on a pair of insulated winter snow boots that are waterproof or water resistance. Once you've arrived at your destination and have escaped the harsh elements of winter you'll be able to slip your feet into the shoes you love most. We can't say enough about a great pair of ankle boots. Roll the cuffs of your skinny jeans just so they end at the top of your boots. Perfect

Facing a more formal winter forecast? Say yes to a sweater dress. Don't skip the tights and knee-length boots if you can, or cute ankle boots in a color that matches your tights. Or, go one warmer and wear your long underwear pants as leggings. Now we're thinking winter! A long down coat, one that skims the top of your ankle boots, may be just the protection you need. Or, if you're brave and commute is short, throw on your cashmere lined gloves and wear the wool coat. Just make sure you're also wearing the long underwear top under the dress. You will be amazed at how warm you'll feel.

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