You can’t go wrong with one of the hottest looks of the season – the versatile tunic. “It’s exotic, it’s jeweled, it comes in every length and every color,” says PEOPLE style director Susan Kaufman (as seen on Halle Berry and Mischa Barton). “It adds that global touch.” Fashion tip: “If you’re a little fuller figured, make sure you find one that’s a little more fitted.”
“It’s a fresh, pretty color that looks good on a lot of skin tones,” says Kaufman of the blue-green shade. This spring, “it’s not a cottony turquoise – it’s a dressed-up turquoise.” Look for silky dresses that feature embellishments (Mischa Barton in Chloe and Naomi Watts in Zac Posen) or accessories like jeweled sandals or necklaces.
TREND: PEASANT SKIRTS
The peasant skirt “fits every body type, it’s flirty and fun and pretty,” says Kaufman. Whether going casual with flip-flops and a tank (like Britney Spears) or dressing it up with a multi-strand necklace and heels (like Teri Hatcher, in Juicy Couture), there’s a multitude of ways to get maximum use of the flowing skirt. “You can wear it to town or to the beach.”
TREND: COWBOY BOOTS
A footwear staple that goes in and out of style, cowboy boots “are making a comeback – and they’re here to stay for a little while,” says Kaufman. “They’re kind of the funky, cool alternative to UGGs. The newest way to wear it is with bare legs and a shorter skirt.” And there are a variety of styles, including the traditional pointy-toed look (as seen on Ashley Olsen) or the less decorative round-toed style (on Kate Bosworth).
TREND: NAUTICAL STYLE
If the bohemian look isn’t your style, don’t fret. The nautical look “offers people an alternative. This is a really easy way to go more classic,” says Kaufman. The distinguishing details to look for are “a great sailor pant, button detail, nautical stripes.” Cate Blanchett’s Chloe blazer (left) and Gwyneth Paltrow’s striped sweater (right) are examples of the seaworthy style.
TREND: ROMANTIC WHITE
This look is all in the details. “The whole idea is that this isn’t a crisp, tailored white shirt with crisp, tailored white pants,” says Kaufman. “The newest looks are eyelet, lace, crochet – anything that has detail in the fabric,” like Oscar nominee Catalina Sandino Moreno’s cocktail dress (left) and Nicollette Sheridan’s silky frock (right).
TREND: FLORAL PRINTS
Whether wearing a tropical pattern (like Lindsay Lohan in her brightly colored pantsuit, paired with Jimmy Choo flats, left) or a more traditional rose design (Jessica Simpson, right), the pattern embodies a fresh feeling perfect for the season. And look for a flowery dress instead of just “buying a floral shirt or floral skirt,” says Kaufman.
TREND: WALKING SHORTS
A way to show a little leg and yet look polished is with walking shorts. “It’s a sophisticated way to wear a short,” says Kaufman. “Wear them with a higher heel” (as seen on Gwyneth Paltrow and Kirsten Dunst). And be sure to keep the ensemble clean and streamlined. “It’s about making sure it’s a pulled-together look.”
TREND: WEDGE ESPADRILLES
“They’re more comfortable than a stiletto but they give you height,” says Kaufman of wedge espadrilles (as seen on Brittany Murphy (left) and Jennifer Love Hewitt). And a big plus: “They go with almost every look of the season – from the peasant skirt to floral dresses to the walking short. They’re a great investment.”
TREND: TRIBAL PRINTS
Want to take a walk on the wild side? Get decked out in African-inspired prints (as seen on Paris Hilton, left, in Diane von Furstenberg, and Nicole Richie). “The idea is a tribal-inspired pattern but made in a modern, more sexy way,” says Kaufman. “A lot of the pieces have conch shells or pukka shells put into the fabric. It’s the mix of the print with the detail of the embellishment added into it.”