Outerwear: staying stylish while braving the elements

In this case, It’s what’s on the outside that counts!

In the Rain

My friend Colleen always manages to look stylish, rain or otherwise

It’s almost impossible to look stylish in the rain. I live in Vancouver and when there’s a crazy torrential downpour (like right now) all I want is to stay warm and dry.  Which leaves me wearing a practical gore-tex jacket (which I’ve tried to retire time and time again only to take it out of hiding at this time of the year) with hood pulled up tight over my face and childlike gum boots or waterproof hiking boots.  The only way anyone can tell that it’s me if I’m wearing this getup is because there’s two sheltie dogs dragging tagging along beside me, usually wearing raincoats of their own.  This is truly the best (or most useful) dreadful weather dog walking gear I can think of.  This is when practical works best.

Love Yellow Gum Boots Credit: Van City Buzz

But when there’s a lighter rainfall it’s much easier to look more put together.  I wear a dressier looking raincoat (as if you can refer to a rain coat as being dressy, but I mean one that you can actually wear a dress under), black rain boots (duh) and a fashionable rain hat (because I prefer not to carry an umbrella). I found a great all-weather leather Dooney & Bourke handbag from a vintage fair in Palm Springs.  I knew when I first spotted it that it would be my go-to at this time of the year.  It pulls everything together.

Here’s another example of keeping stylish in the rain – having people fend off the elements for you when you go to Paris Fashion Week.  And don’t worry about freezing in your gown because of course there’ll be a warm car waiting for you.

In the Snow

What I remember most about living back East was that even when it snowed it was a lot brighter out.  Even though it was cold, the sun was still shining.  Not all the time, but a lot of the time.

Home for the Holidays – Cameron Diaz

You have more fashionable options in colder weather.  Winter is not my favorite season but I love winter coats because there’s so many choices. It’s the last thing you put on before going out the door and first thing people see you in.  You can have fun with them.

The snow won’t ruin wool or cashmere so covering up definitely gives you more options.  When I lived in Toronto I had several nice warm and stylish winter coats.  From a  full length bright red Hilary Radley (Canadian designer) wool coat to a fake leopard fur ¾ swing coat and many others in between. Even some down coats can look stylish (see above). And if you’re not sure you can never go wrong with a long camel coat, preferably in cashmere.  And then there’s the boots….but that’s for another post.

How do you stay stylish on the outside in winter?







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