With all the racy offerings for fall evenings, we're very pleased that preppy, casual tweeds are the ticket for day. And for once, tweed is comfortable -- because this season's best comes in lighter fabrics that are sleek and easy to pull off, especially mixed with the solids in your closet. (Avoid head-to-toe tweed -- it's snazzy in fashion spreads but can look like wall-to-wall carpeting in real life.) Cozy up to this trend with our sharp choices -- they come at way less than Savile Row prices.
For work, throw a chunky turtleneck over Banana Republic's lace-edged skirt ($118 at select Banana Republic stores) or A|X Armani Exchange's trim, bootcut pants ($128 at A|X Armani Exchange stores). Or, for a dressier effect, try tailored pieces with leather accents. We're craving a splurge-worthy jacket by Cynthia Steffe ($268 at Olive & Bette's), a sharp little shell from Kenneth Cole New York ($98 at Bloomingdale's), and maybe even Cole's neat tubular handbag ($50 at Kenneth Cole stores).
Tweeds have always been a joy on chilly outdoor days -- and this season, they're an essential part of a weekend wardrobe. Stock up on heathery sweaters in warm fall colors from Express ($39.50 each at Express stores), or at least pick up a country-chic Old Navy hat ($12.50 at Old Navy stores).
Picks of the Week
Bill Amberg, the fashion crowd's fave source for snazzy English bags, is clearing loads for about 70 percent off, from $20 for evening pouches to $150 for patchwork totes. 230 Elizabeth St. (212-625-8556); A.E., M.C., V.; Thurs. noon-8, Fri. noon-7, Sat. 10-6; 9/14-9/16.
French Connection's sale has zillions of fall basics for men and women, priced at about 60 percent off, from $5 to $300. Parsons School of Design, 560 Seventh Ave., at 40th St.; A.E., M.C., V.; Mon.-Thurs. 11-7, Fri. 9-6; 9/11-9/15.
Antique Source, a Victorian jewelry showroom, is taking 30 to 60 percent off stock (from $29 for a pin to $1,500 for a gold bracelet). 271 Madison Ave., near 39th St., tenth floor (212-681-9142); A.E., M.C., V.; Mon.-Fri. 10:30-6; 9/11-9/15.
White + Warren's sale has hundreds of trendy fall sweaters and other luxurious knits -- all for less than half-price. Chunky cashmere sweaters are $100-$200; wool ones are $60-$100. 80 W. 40th St., third floor (212-398-3295); A.E., M.C., V.; Thurs. 9-6, Fri. till 5; 9/14-9/15.
Cerruti is clearing several lines of sleek men's and women's office clothes at less than half-price. Sizes XS-XL. 24 W. 40th St., first floor (212-278-0121); A.E., M.C., V.; Sun.-Sat. 9-6; 9/17-9/23.
Truva's Turkish kilims are about a third off: Old ones are $279-$850; new ones are $49-$189. 58 Greenwich Ave. (212-462-4040); A.E., M.C., V.; Mon.-Sat. 11-8, Sun. noon-7; 9/16-10/28.
Additional reporting by Brooke Showell.