Next Level: Leather Backpacks

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Backpacks have been, like, a thing for awhile now, but it seems like all of a sudden they are getting all leather-fied. These are four want to hang out with you and your shoulders. —erica

LEVEL I: Ahh, a Rag & Bone take that Felicity would have been totally into.

LEVEL II: Polished, right? That Phillip Lim knows what he’s doing.

LEVEL III: This Kara design's the size of one of those Prada backpacks you were desperado for back when, but that cross-hash design? It's actually mesh.

LEVEL IV: Just because it’s leather doesn’t mean it has to be fancy. Illesteva knows how to keep things chill.

Hey, any “Next Level” fans: Click here.

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Next Level: Chill Pencil Skirts

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Pencil skirts tend to feel so business-y—like the jumping-off point for a commercial from Mastercard (or, lately, Secret). Why so serious? Here, four ways to give the look a chill pill. —erica

LEVEL I: If you really want to go crazy, pair this Altuzarra take with a striped top.

LEVEL II: This Rag & Bone guy is a denim skirt for a grown-up (that’s you).

LEVEL III: The beat-up stitching motif on this 3.1 Phillip Lim sucker is way cooler than any of that weird distressing and whiskering that was once all the rage.

LEVEL IV: Spring colors, from Current/Elliott! Because how ready are you for bare legs?

Get your “Next Level” fix, here and now.

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Formal Statement: 20 Dope Prom Dresses (That Are All Under $300)

A little bird told us that it’s time to start shopping for a prom dress. Ok, no, that’s not entirely how it went down: A little bird (named Iryna) emailed us and asked, “Would you want to help a sister out and offer some prom dress/general evening dress suggestions?” Well, here you go, gurl: 20 ideas—all by super-cool designers and all less than $300—to get you started. And for those of you whose prom memories are currently being mined for #tbt fodder, I present this: a trip to the big-dance attire archives with Laney Boggs, Brenda Walsh, and Josie Grossie. —erica

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Left to right: Ryan Roche, Shona Joy, Erin Fetherston, Erin Fetherston.

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Left to right: Motel, J Brand, 10 Crosby Derek Lam.

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Left to right: Tucker, Horses Atelier, Alice + Olivia.

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Left to right: Alice + Olivia, Halston Heritage, 10 Crosby Derek Lam, Alice + Olivia.

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Left to right: Parker, L’Agence, Amanda Uprichard.

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Left to right: Halston Heritage, Acne, Rag & Bone.

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Weather Vain: Buenos Aires, Argentina - 80 and Mostly Cloudy

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Most of us north of the equator are probably itching to go south right now, and where better than B.A.? Here’s what we’d be working if we were jetting to the Argentine capital right now. —erica

Clockwise from top left:

+ An Alexa Sofia scarf nearly as sweet as Nucha's baked goods.

+ A Black Crane top, as chilled-out as the lofts at Home Hotel

Pants—from Base Range—baggy enough for a healthy portion of grass-fed beef at La Brigada.

+ An Elizabeth Knight necklace game for some Palermo Soho shoppin’ time.

+ Shades, by Warby Parker, for strolling Jardín Botánico Carlos Thays.

+ The sort of Rag & Bone vest you should always toss in a carry-on.

+ A made-in-Argentina bag from the talented ladies of Hare+Hart.

Loeffler Randall shoes that can handle a really, really late night.

Whoa, there’s more “Weather Vain!” Have at it.

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Track Star: Victoria Legrand of Beach House

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The Vibe: If Sirens were around today, Beach House’s Victoria Legrand would be the head of their gang: Her voice is echoey and supernatural, and her style has a certain hard-to-pin-down allure, too.

The One-Song Intro: “Lazuli”

The Look, Recreated: This patterned jacket by Mara Hoffman, this checked dress from Rag & Bone, a delicate braided cuff from My Eagle Scout, and these Acne pony hair booties.

Check out all our “Track Star” finds, why don’t you?

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In Character: Sydney Prosser / Lady Edith Greensly

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No matter what you think of American Hustle, I suspect we can all agree on this: It’s impossible to watch the movie without wanting to pause it every 4 minutes to do some serious analysis of Amy Adams’s whole look—the  constantly-changing hair, the smoky-frosty makeup, the  cleavage-centric wardrobe. Here, the cothing breakdown. —erica

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A Rag & Bone coat that still somehow allows for some serious boobage.

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A Reece Hudson purse fit for an encounter with the boyfriend’s wife.

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An uptown-girl wrap-dress from Issa that convinces all the dudes that the accent’s real.

More movie (and TV) madness!

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Weather Vain: Indianapolis, Indiana - -13 and Mostly Cloudy

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Yes, that’s right: NEGATIVE THIRTEEN. So better bundle up, Indy. —erica

Clockwise from top left:

+ Pure (non-Ugg) coziness in the form of Jeffrey Campbell boots.

+ Black leather mittens by Carolina Amato—as slick as the lobby of The Alexander hotel.

+ A super-serious down coat Helmut Lang—’cause you got to.

+ A stripe-y Eugenia Kim hat for scoping out the local street art. From your car. 

+ K/LLER earrings that have a certain icicle-ness about them.

+ A big ol’ Jérôme Dreyfuss bag—to carry everything you could possibly need so you don’t have to go outside, like, ever.

+ A CdG CdG creation that’s technically a scarf…but could pass for a blanket.

+ Isabel Marant cords—this is not a day for tights.

+ A quilted Rag & Bone sweatshirt that’ll warm you up as fast as a ribeye (and bread pudding?) at St. Elmo will.

Dealing with some cray forecasts on your end? Check out our “Weather Vain” archives.

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Of a Kind

Let’s gift this Rag & Bone backpack to Felicity Porter for her 34th birthday. —erica

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Couple Up: Ryan and Rachel

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Are Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams getting back together?! THE INTERNET WANTS TO KNOW. But, in the meantime, here’s your chance to get a little R&R, via the couple’s most iconic look. (Yes, our survey says that the red carpet/pink hair scene at the SAG Awards in 2007 is even more memorable than this). —erica

Ryan Gosling: The perfect black tie from Rag & Bone, a Steven Alan tux jacket, and not-to-shiny patent lace-ups from Mr. Hare.

Rachel McAdams: A sparkly silver Edie Parker clutch, a halter trapeze dress by Ali Ro, and slick white Sophia Webster pumps.

Like what you see? More twosomes here…

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Track Star: Kelela

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The Vibe: Hard, dark, bass-heavy electronic beats are an unexpected backdrop for Kelela’s R&B voice, which is has a very Aaliyah-slash-TLC vibe. The second-generation Ethopian singer’s style is unexpected, too—she’s got an easy, no-bullshit look that’s still, like, super-hot.

The One-Song Intro: “Enemy”

The Look, Recreated: This silver, geometric necklace by Pamela Love, these skin-tight Rag & Bone leather jeans, and this jersey crop top from Torn by Ronny Kobo. maitri mehta

Get a whole lot more “Track Star” over here.

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