We know: You're a busy entrepreneur who doesn't have time to pay attention to something so frivolous as New York Fall 2015 Fashion Week.
Still, you may not need to get all couture in the office but you do need to look polished and put together. With that goal in mind, we scoured the runways looking for key trends that real people might wear in real offices.
The good news is, practical clothes were in abundant supply on the catwalk this season. Amidst the glitz and glamour of Fashion Week, in which high profile fashion houses as well as smaller, independent designers have the opportunity to show off their latest lines, Inc. spotted a handful of emerging trends that just about anyone can pull off.
The Blazer, Reinvented
An office classic, the form-fitting blazer is making an appearance at numerous shows this season including Vera Wang, Yigal Azrouel, DKNY, Nicole Miller, Concept Korea and more, often stylized with slits, jewels, and floral patterns. Of course, those blazers are more bedazzled than you'd want yours to be at the office. For something a bit more tame, here's a piece from Donna Karan's eponymous fashion house, DKNY, that's both stylish and professional, in a deep, charcoal grey--a color you're going to be seeing a lot of next fall.
Out With the Skinny Pants, in With the Slacks
Blazers aren't the only hot, women's item to be inspired by menswear this year: Derek Lam and Donna Karan, for instance, both emphasized relaxed-fitting women's trousers in their collections (notably in brown, red, and cream), while Diane von Furstenberg and Giulietta featured more wide-legged, free-flowing pants, reminiscent of 1960s bell-bottoms.
Lam, who typically works with feminine fabrics and silhouettes, drew inspiration from what he called his "New York heroines" (Diane Keaton, Mia Farrow, Stockard Channing, Dianne Wiest, Gena Rowlands, and Katharine Hepburn,) contributing to an overall "nostalgia for the 1970s" which dominates this season's fashion trends.
Long Sleeves and Turtlenecks
Warmth is finally hot. Beyond trousers, DKNY's fall line is perhaps best characterized by oversized pieces: turtleneck sweaters and sweater dresses in whites, blues, purples, and reds turned up models with gaping black eyeliner. Take away the gaudy eye make-up, and it's not a bad option for the workplace.
For a subtler take on the Karan look, check out this boxy, layered look from Concept Korea's LEYII by Seunghee Lee, in a collection dubbed "Pur-Ensemble."
The Leather Jacket
While you might think of the leather jacket as a relic of the 1980s, it's making a comeback on the catwalk this season. It's often in black for a sleek, street look (as in Alexander Wang's collection), or else jazzed up with gold zippers or patterning on the sleeves.
The Yvette Hass piece below, from the Nolcha "Ones to Watch" show, demonstrates a trendier version of the classic. Try swapping out your blazer for a close-fitting leather (or faux leather) jacket over a blouse or button-down, especially if your office has a more laid-back, Silicon Valley vibe.
Maybe it's the frigid weather? Designers are marrying utility with style, especially when it comes to shoes. That's probably good news: After all, northeasterners know well that those designer heels don't really fly on black ice. Footwear this season ranges from harsher styles, such as fashion house W.R.K.'s combat boot--which designer Matteo Gottardi described in a press release as being inspired by the "rigorous lifestyle" of the Anchorage Alaska SWAT--to more classic black loafers and tan, woven flats, as spotted on the runway at DKNY, Derek Lam, and Tory Burch. Combat boots are probably tough to pull of at the office, but you might consider black ankle boots, which in a similar, lace-up style to add a little edge to your wardrobe.
The Trench Coat
The trench coat is a perennial favorite and rarely goes out of style. Fashion Week models rocked them across the board this season. Derek Lam's collection, for example, featured layers appropriate for New York City's low temperatures recently in classic earth tones like brown, orange and tan. Badgley Mischka lightened things up by featuring its trench in "chalky" white (as pictured in the below). All are in keeping with a new, "truly unisex color palette" that's come to dominate high fashion, according to industry expert Leatrice Eiseman.