By Andy Flynn
If childhood memories of mom bundling you up in more layers than an Eskimo still haunts you, than you’ve probably vowed not to suffer the same torment commuting to work during winter in your adult years as a result of the humiliation you faced walking to school as a child.
However, as an adult failing to dress appropriate to the weather (especially in the winter) is just as frowned upon as walking into a meeting under-dressed. Dressing for the season maintains an aura of responsibility and prudence, that your coworkers and boss will respect. So bundle up to stay warm, dry and dignified.
Having said that, don’t get me wrong; since mom’s no longer dressing you for school, the snowsuit should stay at home (in fact, as an adult the objective should be dressing to avoid getting snow on your suit). Along with an warm overcoat, these winter outerwear accessories should be a practical yet comfortable part of your professional ensemble.
Galoshes are not only a smart way to keep your feet dry, they also protect dress shoes from salt damage. Find a pair that are not only fashionable, but will prevent your shoes from losing their shine before you get to your destination.
Snow, ice, hail, rain- the umbrella is handy to have accessible all year round! Invest in one that is compact and lightweight for carrying at all times, yet durable enough to withstand the most inclement weather.
Scarves are both a practical and fashionable way to accent your winter wardrobe. Having a variety of scarves will keep your favorite winter coat from ever looking dull. The classic Burberry scarf is a great accent to any color winter coat, while the Double Face Cashmere Scarf from Nordstrom is a bit more conservative -yet versatile.
When it comes to gloves, there are plenty of opportunities to go wrong. First, keep the mittens at home along with that snowsuit! Second, stay away from wearing anything to work that is “fingerless”. Finally, make sure that your the color of your gloves does not clash with the color of your coat. Black leather gloves are most common since they go with just about any variation of gray and black. When selecting a pair of gloves, be sure to pay as much attention to the inner fabric as the outer; shelling out a bit more for a nice pair of gloves will not only look great on the outside, but feel great! For a perfect fit, try Kenneth Cole’s “Two In One” leather gloves with removable cashmere lining!
Likewise, keeping your ears warm can be an even greater fashion risk than gloves. To start, see the examples pictured below to get a sense of what not to wear on your head (unless you are under the age of 18 or over the age of 65 – and in either case would most likely be out of the workforce). When it comes to ear warmers, I’m usually not a fan, but they are a suitable alternative to earmuffs and the hats banned below. For a comfortable and subtle set of warmers to match your ensemble, I recommend picking up this pair from Jos. A. Bank.
Remember the objective is practicality. So be sure to enhance your outerwear with accessories that are comfortable, versatile, maneuverable and (of course) fashionable this winter.