Winter must-haves: 11 Style Panel members share the essentials getting them through the season

Us compromise style? As if! Through the coldest days of winter, it’s important to keep your most important essentials by your side. The right coat, boots or sweater will get you through anything—-even the polar vortex.

In today’s Style Panel challenge, we ask our bloggers to reveal the winter must-haves they swear by. Leonie Markhorst of The Signature Bow snuggles up with a vintage knit, while Christopher Wolf of Wolf Musings swears by a warm varsity jacket. Becky Kung of Velvet & Vino plays up a pop of colour to get her through grey days.

Staying chic and comfortable during frigid season is easier than you think. Click through to get the low-down on the winter must-haves you should be adding to your shopping list pronto.

Question 86: What’s the one winter essential you swear by keeping you stylish and warm all season long? Check the answers now! »


Winter Must Haves Kira Paran

Kira Paran,29
Edmonton| Northern Style

My winter go-to in the style department is an unexpected accessory. In the cold months, I’m always covering up much of my outfit with a coat or jacket. My style solution is using fun winter accessories to add personality to warm wintery looks. I absolutely love this trapper hat, and although my husband mocks me a little I still feel like a Russian princess. Every winter I bust out my collection of gloves, scarves and hats. Winter is way too long to be wearing the exact same outerwear look daily, why not change it up by using different combinations of your favourite winter accessories? Stay warm friends!

Kira is wearing : Jacket, riding pant, and jewelled sweater, J.Crew. Boots, Hunter. Watch , Michael Kors. Bag, Coach.Trapper hat, eBay. Rings, Tacori & David Yurman.

Melanie Morais,25
Edson,AB| Bornlippy

There’s no doubt that when you live somewhere as cold as Alberta you tend to accumulate a lot of winter essentials. It’s hard to narrow down what the ultimate winter essential is but a very clear and obvious choice would be a good winter coat. Whether you’re having a bad hair day, fashion day, any day, a good coat can bring your spirits up (well at least mine!). When looking for an “essential” coat I go for one that not only makes you feel good but that can stand the test of time. A classic coat is always a good idea, don’t get me wrong a trendy coat is great too! I love this one from Old Navy because it’s classic and warm! In my opinion, you can never have too many coats!

Melanie is wearing: Coat, Old Navy. Sweater, Zara. Jeans, Gap. Boots, Aldo. Bag, Banana Republic

Kayla Short,26
Halifax| Short Presents

My fashion essential for winter has got to be brightly colored sweaters and jumpers. I can think of nothing better to keep me warm while also brightening up my dull winter skin. When I found this sweater in store I immediately feel in love with the color, but then once I tried it on: it was the fabric that stole my heart! Purple is not usually a color I tend to grab for, but among a plethora of gray and black it stood out among the rest. Dress up your cozy jumpers with some fun jewels, or dress down with a great pair of denims: you really can’t go wrong.

Kayla is wearing: Sweater, Joe Fresh. Watch, Fossil. Bracelet, Alex and Ani

Lyndsey Forest,23
Edmonton| Over My Styled Body

If you’re a Canadian fashionista, then you know there is a balance between practicality and style when it comes to braving the cold winter months. You’re always on the hunt for pieces that will be both on trend and keep you warm; which at times can be a bit tricky. However, one of my no fail winter go to’s that accomplishes just that is a great scarf. And this winter in particular I’ve been opting for chunky blanket scarves with plaid prints and bold colours to keep my outfits fresh and fun!

Lyndsey is wearing: Jacket, Gap. Scarf, J.Crew Factory. Denim, Zara. Bag, Kate Spade. Shoes, J.Crew.

Mikki Fox,30
Calgary| Centre Street Style

If anyone knows how to navigate winter in the chicest of manners it’s us Canadian gals. What I’ve learned in my years of blizzards, downpours and frigid temps is that you can be stylish while fending off frostbite. My number one winter fashion essential is, hands-down, my fur vest. Layered over a delicious dress, a sweater and legging combo or casual with jeans and a sweatshirt, it’s versatility is unrivalled. The neutral colour allows me to wear it with nearly everything in my closet, and depending on the weather, it can be worn underneath or overtop my winter parka. Our love affair has been going strong for the past two years, and I see no end in sight.

Mikki is wearing : Dress, Aritzia. Vest, Airfield. Boots and belt, Dolce & Gabbana. Clutch, YSL.

Mo Handahu,29
Halifax| Lion Hunter

My winter fashion essential has to be my bright coat. It’s been my go-to for the last 3 winters and I just can’t seem to part ways with it. The blue works well with pretty much everything in my closet; by complementing other colourful pieces and perking up the neutrals. It’s the perfect winter accessory for covering up when I brave showing some skin and great for low key days so I don’t look too frumpy.

Mo’s wearing: Dress,coat and earrings, Value Village. Shoes, Shoe Dazzle.

Leonie Markhorst,26
Vancouver| The Signature Bow

You can never go wrong with a beautiful coat (or two, or three…). Luckily the winters in Vancouver are pretty mild so we can pick coats based on their looks rather than their practicality. Especially this year I feel that there are so many pieces to choose from. Cotton candy pink, teddy bear material, plaid, you name it… the stores have it. It’s all about making a statement. While having that kind of bold coat is fun for a season, I prefer to stick to a more classic piece to get me through the colder months. This grey vintage coat has already proven to withstand the test of time, without looking outdated.

Leonie is wearing: Vintage coat, COS. Sweater, American Eagle. Jeans, Topshop.
Booties, COS. Scarf, H&M trend chain bag.

Alexandra Grant,25
Vancouver| To Vogue or Bust

While I have a ton of cozy winter-specific pieces that I rely on to get me through the cold season, I would say no piece works harder than my favourite leather jacket by Walter Baker. It’s the perfect (and unexpected) piece for layering and it makes transitioning to a chic indoor look a cinch – all you have to do is throw off the outerwear! Once the weather warms up a bit too, this will be my go-to transitional piece. Definitely an investment-worthy piece!

Alex’s wearing: Jacket, Walter Baker. Dress, Obakki. Coat, H&M. Bootie, Zara. Bag, 3.1 Phillip Lim for Target.

Photography by Trevor Negin

Barbara Ann Solomon, 26
TORONTO | Barbara Ann’s Style Blog

This week I’m lucky enough to be in sunny and beautiful Miami, so most of my winter essentials stayed home. I drove down here, leaving behind all the snow and parkas, bringing only the few winter pieces I needed in case of an emergency on the road. The one item that I was not going to leave behind were my Dr. Martens—I love these boots. During the recent Ice Storm in Toronto, these boots ensured I stayed on my feet. They are durable, comfortable, and above all else add some much needed attitude to a very feminine look.

Barbara is wearing: Boots, Dr. Martens. Dress, Zara. Tights, Joe Fresh. Necklace, Liana Marie.

Becky Kung,30
Calgary| Velvet & Vino

A must-have in these frigid winter temperatures is a go to pair of tights. I opt for punchy colored tights which quickly become the outfit accessory, and the bright pink is spot on for the dreary winter months. These tights pair well with a pencil skirt for daytime and easily transition into evening when converted to something like a midi leather skirt.

Becky’s wearing: Tights, Target. Top, Zara. Skirt, Limited. Booties, WINNERS by Me Too Shoes. Sunglasses, Tory Burch. Bracelet, BCBG Maxazria. iPhone Case, Kate Spade.

Christopher Wolf,23
Calgary| Wolf Musings

My winter staple is definitely my leather contrast sleeve varsity jacket. I purchased it on sale last winter, and has made its way into my spring, fall and winter wardrobe because of its versatility and fit. I can wear it with just a tee shirt in the spring, with a thin cardigan in the fall, and layer a thick hoody or knit underneath in the winter. It can look preppy if I want it to, or a little bit edgier, or even fuse a bit of class and punk into one look. They key to choosing a “staple” in your wardrobe is finding something that transcends seasons, is understated, but can also bring an outfit alive. And of course, you want something that’s practical. Lucky for me, this letterman/varsity jacket has all of these qualities, and does the trick for me.

Chris is wearing:T-Shirt and jacket, H&M. Infinity scarf, American Apparel.

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