For the fashion-obsessed, Fashion Week is like the Olympics. And, as any truly patriotic person will tell you, the Americans always have the best showing. Witness New York's Fashion Week, where the best and brightest in the industry put their talent on display. From long-time household names like Oscar de la Renta, Marc by Marc Jacobs, and Michael Kors, to newer standouts on the scene like Proenza Schouler, Alexander Wang, and Alice + Olivia, New York is where the all-stars came to play.
Sadly, whoever first conceived of Fashion Week must have had a cruel sense of humor. Once you've spent an entire week lusting over the gorgeous garments, you realize that they aren't available in stores until summer. Well fashionable ladies of the Bay Area, we're calling their bluff. Not only have we scoured the runway shows to compile a cheat sheet of the top trends at NYFW, but we've also identified a game plan for you to start wearing them right now: what to buy, where to buy it, how to wear it, and how much it'll cost you. Here's our shopping guide for the SF girl who, like us, thinks six months is way too long to wait.
Marc by Marc Jacobs A/W 2012; Photo by Peter Michael Dills/Getty Images
1. Bold Red
Red was the color of choice for many designers at last month's Fashion Week. Styled in a number of ways from jumpsuits to accessories, and present in both day and night looks, designers made it clear that bright red pieces are a must-have for your wardrobe this season. While Marc Jacobs sent models down the runway head-to-toe in the hue, other designers like L'Wren Scott kept it subtle with pops of the color to brighten up subdued autumn apparel.
L'Wren Scott A/W 2012; Photo by Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images
How To Wear It
For a night out, don't be afraid to sport a bold look with red separates, or a red dress with red heels. For the office, school, or more formal gatherings, keep it subtle with a red bag or plain red jeans.
1. Jeans: Ralph Lauren, $100 (available at Nordstrom)
2. Bag: Madewell, $135
3. Blouse: American Apparel, $88
4. Sunglasses: Rayban, $154 (available at Sunglass Hut)
5. Jacket: Kenneth Cole New York, $400 (available at Nordstrom)
6. Heels: Aldo, $100
Milly by Michelle Smith A/W 2012; Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images
2. Mod Mini Dresses
This year at Fashion Week it was clear that when it came to dresses, designers where channeling the 1960s. Designers from Milly by Michelle Smith to Victoria Beckham sent mod dresses down the runway in a variety of prints and cuts, but all bright and all short. Working as the perfect winter dress, these minis pair well with tights for cold days and evenings.
How To Wear It
When styling this trend, it's all about embracing the spirit of the '60s; experimentation is key. On a chilly night, go for the classic look, and pair your dress with tights and patent leather mary-janes. For an indoor party or warmer evening, wedge heels in metallic or bright hues work well with this playful look.
Dresses from Left to Right
1. French Connection, $248 (available at Bloomingdales)
2. Zara, $60
3. BCBG, $288 (available at Nordstrom)
4. Tibi, $298 (available at Nordstrom)
5. Forever 21, $23
Reed Krakoff A/W 2012; Photo by Peter Michael Dills/Getty Images
3. Winter Whites
You know that rule about not wearing white after Labor Day? Forget it. White outerwear was a clear favorite for designers at New York Fashion Week. From Michael Kors to J. Mendal, white trousers, coats, gloves, and fur collars were all over the runway. While some looks were kept simple with just one white piece, many all white ensembles were sent down the catwalk. It seems as though there was a general consensus across all the designers: white is the new must-have color for cold weather.
How To Wear It
For the accident-prone, limit this trend to just one white piece such as a hat or fur collar (items unlikely to fall victim to coffee mishaps and other disasters). For braver souls, pair a white trouser with a white coat for a clean, tailored look. On the weekend, wear a cozy white sweater with a white fur vest. As the designers styled it, there's really no limit to the number of white layers that you can pile on.
1. Jacket: Laundry by Shelli Segal, $128 (available at Nordstrom)
2. Vest: Rachel Roy, $698 (available at Bloomingdales)
3. Hat: Merona at Target, $20
4. Gloves: Ralph Lauren Polo, $38
Proenza Schouler A/W 2012; Photo by Peter Michael Dills/Getty Images
4. Asymmetrical Jackets
For jackets at this season's fashion week, many designers veered from traditional lines with motorcycle-inspired asymmetrical jackets. From diagonal zippers at Proenza Schouler, to jackets that opened on the side at Elie Tahari, the trend was all over the catwalk. As a piece that can be thrown on for chilly summer evenings, this is a trend you can wear all year long.
How To Wear It
There are no rules here. Throw a leather jacket with a diagonal zipper over an evening dress to add some edge to your outfit, or pair it with skirt or trouser of a similar color and fabric for a suit-like look. Look for jackets of leather and denim to amp up the rocker-chick feel of this unconventional trend.
Jackets from Left to Right
1. Paul & Joe, $528 (available at Nordstrom)
2. Helmut Lang, $795 (available at Nordstrom)
3. H&M, $60
4. BCBG, $188