January 21, 2010  ·  style

Three-season investments in style

It's impossible get excited about the arrival of spring styles when the Western hemisphere is still buried in snow and ice. But if you've got gift cards burning a hole in your pocket, here's an opportunity to invest in a couple of versatile items under $100 that you can wear three (or possibly even four) seasons.

1. J.Crew cotton shawl-collar cardigan | $88
A really similar cardigan appeared at J.Crew last year, and if you were waiting for a sale, you probably didn't get one. They quickly sold out of almost all remotely humanoid sizes. The natural muslin colour works in spring over a light-coloured T-shirt, in fall over an open collar button-down, and even in summer—throw it on poolside after you towel off. The navy version also works if you're James Bond.

2. Clarks Desert Boots | $95
We've mentioned desert boots before, and you can buy them at a lot of places for around the same price. We like Nordstrom because of their legendary customer service, and because right now they have good stock of all 5 main suede colours. Taupe and Sand are the classics, and you can literally wear them almost year-round with just about anything other than a suit: khakis, shorts, denim, or corduroy. Extremely comfortable, they look even better with wear, and thanks to the natural crepe sole you can quietly sneak out of boring meetings in 'em. A better style investment you won't find, if for that reason alone.

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