ELLE Editor’s Picks: Trench Dressing for the New Season

ELLE Editor's Picks

A Stylish Necessity
For those of us not fortunate enough to live in a climate that’s 75 degrees year-round, versatile outerwear is more than necessary – it’s a means of survival. Even in the dead of summer, one can be caught in a flash downpour at any time of day, and as a conscious dresser, I could never bring myself to rock a plastic poncho from the nearest Duane Reade. What other choice do I have but to indulge in a variety of lightweight trench coats in shades from stone to camel to midnight navy? I actually don’t even look at it as an indulgence since the trench coat is truly seasonless and has proven to be one of the most timeless options for outerwear.

Iconic Inspiration
When shopping for a new style, I tend to think of how I’ll wear the particular trench. There’s the cinched waist, fitted double-breasted style worn bare-legged (á la Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s), the stiff silhouette with popped-collar capabilities to wear like Jackie O., or the long, lean, and loose style to wear open with jeans and biker boots in the effortless style of Kate Moss.

Chic Renewal
I also like to give an old trench new life season after season. Thinking of the outerwear as a blank canvas, I would add a strip of lace to the back or sleeves of an olive trench to get the look of Jason Wu’s pre-fall collection, or punch some hardcore spikes on the lapel of a classic trench to channel Burberry’s modern styles. My advice to trench-lovers: Stock up on as many styles as you can! This is one piece of your wardrobe not to skimp on.

August 23, 2011