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WEEKEND UPDATE: The New Off-Duty Essentials

Off-duty perfection. Photo via GAP

When Friday hits, it's tempting to just throw on your jammies and be done with it. I mean, seriously, after the torture of control-top tights and the pressure of being buttoned-up all week, it's no wonder we need a little breathing room.

Luckily, off-duty dressing doesn't have to be sloppy. Step away from your saggy-bottomed joggers, ladies - these 10 on trend pieces will help you keep your cool (without sacrificing an ounce of comfort) all weekend long...


HOW TO ROCK IT: If Toronto Fashion Week is any indication, blanket dressing is THE big trend for fall. I'm talking draped right over your shoulders layered on top of your coat, or, when the weather cooperates, instead of a coat. This trend is brilliant for anyone who feels intimated by scarves and the myriad ways to tie them. The blanket lets you throw it on (literally), run out the door and stay super cozy all day. Perf!

OUR PICK: Paloma Shawl, $74, Roots


HOW TO ROCK THEM: Think of ear cuffs as the earring's bad-ass little sister. A little bit punk and perfectly edgy, the ear cuffs that have been floating around for a few seasons have morphed for Fall '14. This season, update your ears with a pair of pretty rhinestone clusters or try out the newest cool cuff: the ear crawler, aptly named because its vertical design literally crawls down your ear. 

OUR PICKS: Rhinestone Ear Cuffs, $16, RW&CO and Ear Crawlers, $15, Le Château


HOW TO ROCK THEM: If you ever saw that Friends episode where Ross gets all hot and bothered in his tight leather pants, you might be reluctant to go there. This season, it's all about the slouchy leather pant - more sporty than overtly sexy, and perfect for pairing up with your skater shoes, wool ball cap, graphic tee and sweatshirt, no baby powder required.

OUR PICK: Daytona Lamb Leather Jogger, $249, Danier


HOW TO ROCK THEM: I'm not going to hate on Hunters or Sorels or any other covetable boot you've been eyeing (or buying). But as your fashion blogger, I'd be remiss if I didn't share the up-and-comers you should consider. Not cheap, but totally worth it, the Woolrich buffalo plaid boot and the more subtle Aigle rain boot from France will score you compliments almost every time you wear them and are perfect for those of you who don't want to look like everyone else.

OUR PICKS: Woolrich Baltimore Boot, $254, American Eagle and Aigle Juliette Rain Boot, $155, Town Shoes



HOW TO ROCK IT: You probably already own a plaid shirt or two but how about a plaid tunic? Supremely comfy and figure-flattering, thanks to it's short-long silhouette, you will live in this piece every weekend.


OUR PICK: Plaid Tunic, $64.95, GAP


HOW TO ROCK IT: The fashion world has revolted against overtly logoed It bags this fall. Instead, editors are wait-listing for beautifully designed, super simple bags with staying power. We love the timeless appeal of these two chic bags and will wear them confidently for seasons and seasons to come.

OUR PICKS: Roxanne Bag, $258, Roots and Bleecker Leather Duffle Bag, $358, Coach


HOW TO ROCK IT: One super easy way to look on trend this season is to throw on a chic vest. While some faux fur can look cheap, the faux fur gilet from H&M is luxe-looking to the max. We'll wear it over our sweatshirts, sweaters and crisp white shirts, or as a cozy layer under our coats on those extra freezing days. Not that we even want to think about that yet. Brrr....

OUR PICK: Faux Fur Gilet, $49.95, H&M


HOW TO ROCK IT: Next to the blanket shawl, the fedora has officially been named fall's penultimate pretty-people must. If you're tired of black and grey, opt instead for this bordeaux beauty, ideal for throwing on when you haven't bothered to blow-dry.

OUR PICK: Bordeaux Fedora, $25, ALDO


HOW TO ROCK IT: I'm obsessed with oversized coats this fall but so many of the ones I want are way out of my price range. Luckily, I happened upon these wool-blend beauties from H&M. The grey boiled wool coat is perfect for every day while the white double-breasted coat is ideal for anyone without toddlers. Please buy this so I can dress vicariously through you. Sigh...

OUR PICKS: Wool Blend Drapey Coat, $79.95, H&M and Oversized Wool Blend Coat, $179, H&M


HOW TO ROCK THEM: It's official: chocolate brown is the hottest nail colour this fall. We love the rich shade because it's dark enough to look edgy but not goth like black, so it's appropriate for your work week and beyond. 

OUR PICK: Formula X New Classics in Dark Chocolate Brown, $13, Sephora



KNIT KNACK: 3 Sweet Fall Sweater Looks

Photo via H&M.

If you're like me, you want to avoid that box of winter stuff for as long as possible. I'm totally with you. I mean, it feels waaay too early for mitts and toques at this point, no? And it just feels like you're giving up when you finally have to admit that the cold weather is here to stay. 

So, let's start slow, shall we? Step 1: The sweater. There's nothing cuter, comfier or cozier than a great knit when the wind's blowing outside and you're hunkered up indoors. Here's which knits are causing a fuss this fall:

THE CABLE KNIT: This fall, the cable knit sweater is back with texture to spare. With a chunky knit like this, you'll want to keep the rest of your look sleek and sexy so try pairing it up with waxed black skinnies, cool skater shoes and a great oversized watch or handful of rings to add some edge to this classic piece.

THE LONG CARDI: The long cardi is one trend that we can all get behind. I mean, a sweater that covers your bum, and then some? Sign me up. This season, you'll see loads of long cardis in stores ranging from thigh-sweeping to below-the-knee. Add a tank or tee, jeans and a great pair of ankle boots to score that perfect casual-cool vibe. A floppy felt fedora and a fine gold necklace will put the finishing touches on your look.

THE VARSITY SWEATER: Whether you're a student or not, the varsity sweater will score you top style marks this fall. Choose an oversized varsity to pair up with tailored black trousers, sporty sunglasses, a sleek backpack and super sexy heels for a grown-up take on this schoolgirl staple.

Scroll down for 3 sweet sweater looks to try out this fall...

1. Leather Trainers, $79.95, H&M; 2. 16-Pack Silver Rings, $6.95, H&M; 3. Grey Cable Knit Sweater, $64.95, GAP; 4. Leather Satchel, $110, GAP; 5. Skinny Low Ankle Jeans, $29.95, H&M; 6. Fitted Boyfriend Contrast Placket Shirt, $46.99, GAP.

1. Zip-Up Cardi, $55.90, Smart Set; 2. Gold Arrow Necklace, $4.95, H&M; 3. Solid Thin Strap Cami, $14.90, Smart Set; 4. Navy Block Heel Boot, $140, ALDO; 5. Roxanne Leather Bucket Bag, $258, Roots; 6. Skinny Jeans, $45, American Eagle.

1. V-Neck Jumper, $39.95, H&M; 2. Versace Sporty Sunglasses, $229, Sunglass Hut; 3. Rope & Stone Bracelet, $7.99, Smart Set; 4. Marcie Leather Backpack, $99, Danier; 5. Strappy Black Pumps, $90, ALDO; 6. Slim Leg Stretch Pants, $84.95, RW&CO.


FALL FASHION: Boots, Handbags, Yum.

Photo via H&M

It's like a conspiracy this time of year. While we've all been taught about the dangers of jealousy, how can any woman, no matter how sane, help herself? You hear them clicking down the sidewalk behind you. You see them on the periphery in the playground. Then in line at Starbucks, they are literally right in your face as women on both sides go to pull out their credit cards. And we know we don't need them. I mean, most of us have a spare pair of boots and an extra handbag in our closets (I happen to be blessed with a rather large contingent of back-ups). But, we all know it has nothing to do with needs at all. It's about wanting, craving, have-to-have-ing that sublime handbag. It's about knowing that those sick boots you saw on that twenty-something will make us feel twenty-something again. And we work hard, damnit. We deserve them, whether we really need them or not. Andwe'llwearthemeverydaysowhenyouthinkaboutitthatwayyoucanjustifythem anyway. There. 

Let's do this. Here are my fav mostly-neutral but oh-so-pretty fall handbags and boots. I already did another handbag round-up last month but as I said, I just couldn't help myself. I hope you understand.