Ladies of Boston, you’re familiar with the winter struggle: One day it’s warm and then, seemingly out of nowhere, the cold hits you like a hard slap in the face (this week is a bitter reminder). Dressing yourself becomes a dreary task — your Ugg boots are tempting and you begin to ponder the social repercussions of wearing your onesie in public. Faced with these conditions, your interest in dressing well often conflicts with your disinterest in hypothermia. In years past, I’ve opted for coats so big that they swallow me whole or the waddle-inducing “tights under leggings under pants” scenario, neither of which are very fashion conscious. This year, I’m determined to use the season’s trends to my advantage. Here’s how to survive and stay warm during a Boston winter while standing out. 

1. Flannel Layering
Ahh, the flannel – we all have one (or several, or 10, maybe, if you have a particular affinity for American Eagle Outfitters or you’ve been lured in by those overly cheerful Ralph Lauren holiday commercials on more than one occasion).

Make use of your flannels by layering them up. A flannel looks great peeking out from underneath a big comfy sweater, and though you may feel like you’re suffocating on your morning T-ride, you’ll feel comfortable in your frigid office for the rest of the day.

Flannel: L.L. Bean, Sweater: Theory, Shorts: Carven, Shoes: McQ Alexander McQueen

2. Over-the-Knee Boot

If you’re looking to make use of fall dresses while retaining some feeling in your legs, an over-the-knee boot may be the solution. A good knee-length boot, like a pair from Stuart Weitzman (splurge) or Steve Madden (save) will be warm enough to wear throughout the winter. Wear them with your evening look and stifle a smug grin as you watch scantily-clad ladies shiver down Landsdowne Street in open-toed heels.

Boots: Stuart Weitzman, Coat: Dorothy Perkins, Dress: Uniqlo, Bag (similar): Balenciaga

3. Winter White
This year, someone decided to throw the “no white after Labor Day” rule out the window, and everyone else followed suit. It’s a great opportunity to make use of the white jeans you normally reserve for summer or the white heels that, in previous years, seemed ill-fitting come September. Try pairing a white top with white bottoms and accessorize with a color that contrasts the ensemble.

Jeans: JBrand, Sweater: Peter Jensen, Lip Pencil: Nars, Shoes (similar): Zara

The Statement Coat
Sure, your standard black peacoat often does the trick. But when you’re all wrapped up, there’s no easier way to make a statement than by wearing a coat that stands out. Patterned coats are particularly trendy this season, as are boxy, “boyfriend-style” jackets that are roomy enough for wearing added layers underneath without feeling stiff or restricted.

Coat: Stella Jean, Pants (similar): Zara, Scarf (similar): Paula Bianco, Boots: Rachel Zoe

5. Faux Fur
You’ve probably seen your fair share of furry vests, hats, and, somehow, even shoes. But this trend hasn’t quite stepped out of the fashion limelight so you might as well jump on board. A faux-fur trimmed vest will keep you nice and toasty when your friends drag you to the Frog Pond rink against your will, and a faux fur collar will warm you when the line at Starbucks extends out the door (because everyone and their mother wants a Peppermint Mocha Latte.)

Faux Fur Collar (similar): Asos, Jacket: La Garconne, Top (similar): American Apparel, Skort (similar): Zara

6. Freeze-proof holiday look
Because tights don’t always do the trick and your legs are as pale as the snow you just slipped in, consider a party look that offers more coverage. A jumpsuit can act as a classy and stylish alternative to a miniskirt or a short dress. Pair with a clutch purse and an eye-grabbing necklace and you’ll be the bell of the ball Boylston bar.

Jumpsuit (similar): Zara, Clutch Purse: Claire Vivier, Necklace: Cult Status, Shoes: Christian Louboutin