Runway to Reality | How to Wear a Tweed Dress for Fall. The Biker Look Gets Polished Up

Fashion Yin & Yang. A Rough, Yet Refined, Runway Look from Belstaff Inspires How to Wear a Tweed Dress

The runway look from Belstaff pretty much sums up the style inspiration perfectly. Rich, deep colors, refined but also with some edge to it:

Next up, how to take the runway look and bring it down to earth with a little shop-by-number moment. Here's how to wear the tweed dress using the designer inspiration:

Shop the look: 1-Levi's Made & Crafted Levi's Vintage Clothing Leather Biker Jacket (, 2-Kookai Tweed Dress With Leather Details (, 3-Casadei Knee High Boot (, 4-Yves Saint Laurent Gourmette Gold-plated Crystal Bracelet (

Time to get/shop up close and personal and see why this look works...


Why this works: A motorcycle jacket is a classic in any wardrobe. The asymmetrical zipper along the front minimizes, so 'apple' body types, this can be a fabulous thing for you. Not that you shouldn't flaunt it if you've got it, but a little streamlining is always a good thing. The key on leather jackets is in the shoulders. If you try them on and go from female to linebacker, i.e., if there's more than an inch of extra padding or material on the shoulders and upper arms, keep shopping. A tight fit, not to the point of you being unable to lift your arms above 'mummy-walk,' height, but enough that it's close to your actual body, can make a world of difference. It keeps the look modern. Bring it to a tailor if you must. And for the motorcycle jacket, you can bend a bit with this advice. The silhouette lends itself to a bit more volume. Just keep the rest of the ensemble slim if that's the case.

One biker jacket will never do, even though I'm swooning over this one. See more jackets, leather and otherwise, in the StyleShaker Closet:


Why this works: The seaming detail on this tweed dress at the slimmest part of the body is key. Empire (sounds more like, 'umpire,') waistlines accentuate the positive and bring the eyeline right where you want it. The hook closure along the bust is also a sweet detail here making a vertical line (streamlining yet again) that, when combined with the wide scoop neck, makes the dress universally flattering. Smaller bust? The empire waist accentuates. Bigger bust? The neckline keeps things from crossing the line. No need to give 'em a show, but that doesn't mean curves should be hidden. Always follow your lines, they're your guide and it's good to stay within them. Subtle can be sexy.

Finally, warning, cap sleeves are not your friend if you're looking at your arms and thinking about how you should really invest in some free weights already. Cap sleeves will accentuate the upper arm. Go with a three quarter length sleeve to minimize. You should feel strong in this, not obsessed with what doesn't work, but empowered by what does. So, if you need to, make the mini-adjustment, it's easy enough to do...

There are plenty more dress options lining the walls of the StyleShaker Closet:


Why this works: Um, why would a chocolate brown, croc-embossed, knee high leather boot ever not work? Well, right, I know, if you have calf issues, this may not be the boot of choice. But by all means, take the silhouette as a cue for finding something similar AND with a little elastic inset. It's out there.

The runway look shows a bare leg. That's all fine and good, unless you're in Chicago and it's January, ah memories. Throw in an opaque tight, yes, I said opaque, in brown to keep things in line. If you're more on the petite side, I would also definitely recommend this approach. Cutting off the eye-line at the knee is all fine and good when you've got height, but when you're pushing five-one on a good day, throw on some tights, opt out of a boot with a nude pump, or go back to tights and sub-in a fold-over ankle bootie. Let's just say, you've got options, and speaking of...

Shop more boots, pumps, flats, ok fine, all of the shoes we have lined up in the StyleShaker Closet:


Why this works: The chain bracelet works well back to the tougher biker-jacket look on this ensemble. It's the perfect addition to balance out the overall, masculine/feminine look. And, B., how could a gold-plated chain bracelet ever not work? It's stunning. I'm swooning. 'Nuff said.

Shop more jewelry, bracelets & beyond:

There you have it, how to wear a tweed dress for Fall, all inspired by a little runway moment from Belstaff's Fall 2012 collection. I always go back to the archives for inspiration when it comes to figuring out what to wear for myself, but also for my clients. It's a quick reference point that can inspire any variation on the ensemble theme. I happen to consider my wall of inspiration the ace up my sleeve. If I'm ever in a jam with what to wear, pack, etc, I go to it, take in the eye candy, and inevitably figure out the perfect look.

If the wall or this post doesn't cut it for you and you're still puzzled on how to pull off the ankle bootie you just bought, or the printed wrap dress that may be better for evening than daytime, ask away. Send an image and your question, we will follow up with a quick solution and look. Done and done.

Keep the shopping momentum going and see more on what to wear, how to wear it, and where to shop, here.