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5 Winning NYFW Looks & How to Wear Them: Guest Blogger

We fell hard for Natalie Alcala last fall, when the LA-based writer spent a week guest blogging for us. In fact, we loved her posts so much that we asked her to be a contributing editor. In addition to blogging for us once a week, she’ll also be writing for the Birchbox Magazine and keeping us up to speed on all things fashion, beauty, and fun.

Photos: Style.com

One of my favorite things to do at the end of fashion week is to thoroughly scan every show to round up the top looks. For fall 2012, I noticed that designers strayed from last year’s sportswear influence to produce pieces that played on both femininity and strength. Luxe fabrics, sheer elements, sharp layers, and fearless pattern-play all contributed to the season’s dressed-up approac. Here are fives runway looks that I’m dreaming of and a few tips on how you can rock the style at home.

1. 3.1 Phillip Lim: This collared cocktail number is a dressier alternative to a top-buttoned shirt, which is all the rage these days. I love how the preppy collar adds a touch of sophistication to the edgy cutout detail.

Style takeaway: To instantly update your existing partywear, stock up on detachable collars in varied colors and prints (like this faux fur leopard one by Akira) and pair them with your go-to dresses.

2. Rag and Bone: Ah, the turtleneck. A fashion decision that has the potential to look so right, but most of the time looks so wrong (except on Steve Jobs, of course). The boys of Rag & Bone nail it here by pairing a classic black turtleneck with a body-hugging dress in an edgy print to take the look from preppy to progressive.

Style takeaway: Buy a few inexpensive turtlenecks in black, white, or gray and wear them under your favorite printed dresses and blouses. You may not believe me now, but it actually looks really chic.

3. Prabal Gurung: This was one of my favorite collections of the season, hands down. Prabal never ceases to impress with imaginative prints, textures, and embellishments. This crochet beaded dress demands attention and has a futuristic flapper vibe that would work perfectly at a fashion-forward holiday soiree.

Style takeaway: Explore your local vintage shops for crochet tops or dresses and update them at home with beads, sequins, or studs. Where a sheer slip underneath to complete the effect.

4. Altuzarra: Joseph Altuzarro is one of today’s most buzzed-about designers, and for good reason. His approach to fashion is always fun and his designs transcend trends. I love the idea of pairing a colorful knit sweater underneath a black sleeveless fur vest. It looks stylish and super cozy!

Style takeaway: Wear bold printed blouses or sweaters under solid sleeveless vests to trick people into thinking that you have a new awesome jacket everyday.

5. NAHM: This line is designed by Nari Manivong and Ally Hilfiger; Tommy Hilfiger’s daughter. I instantly fell in love with their quirky cool approach to prints and loved the idea of matching your outfit to your wallpaper (à la the 2004 film, Garden State). The layered skirts were also a nice touch.

Style takeaway: Match printed buttondown shirts with printed pencil skirts, and don’t be afraid to mix patterns! To replicate NAHM’s skirt layering, wear a knee-length lace slip in a bright hue under an above-the-knee skirt.

—Natalie

For more fashion and beauty fun, read all of Natalie’s posts!

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