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What Are the Key Elements of NYC Style?

Learn the key elements of NYC style from fashion editor Verena von Pfetten in this Howcast video.


So New York has a very definitive style. I think the first thing people think of when they think of New York is the all black or the sort of Devil Wears Prada look. And I think the key elements of New York style are actually a little more broken down than that.

New Yorkers want to be comfortable. They always want to look good, but they have a really busy day. So you know, they want to make sure that they're dressed for the elements and dressed for everything they have to do. You know, it's not about getting in your car, going home, and changing. Once you leave your apartment you're probably gone for the entire day. And maybe you have work. And maybe you have a lunch. Then you maybe have cocktails or a party late at night.

So when you're getting dressed in New York you're really dressing for several different events at once. And that's why layering is so key. You know, New Yorkers really love to layer, because they have to do it. So the key with that is, again, keeping a slim bottom layer, and then layering different textures. And different sort of. Everything should be fitted, but it should feel like a flowing sort of easy layer.

Another thing to keep in mind is all black. And that's mainly because, again, it's convenience. You know when you're dressing for a billion different things and you don't know where you're going to end up, all black is an easy way to know for sure that you're going to fit in and you're never going to look underdressed or overdressed.

And then another key element is mixing and matching, particularly when it comes to cheap or expensive clothing. You know New York is an expensive city and not everyone can spend 500 dollars on a blouse. So the best way that I think New Yorkers manage to fit that budget is to buy classic things for their statement pieces, and then sort of mix those in with you know standard T-shirts and jeans, and dresses that don't break the bank.

So the things to keep in mind, again, are layering, mixing and matching, and sort of dressing in a way that's easy and comfortable and can get you through an entire day.

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