Professional, Smart & Chic – Introducing the 2013 Color of the Year (And How to Enjoy Wearing it Now!)

A work-appropriate look you can get excited about.

Happy New Year! 2013 has begun with some dark and dreary weather in many parts of the country, so it seems even more appropriate – and necessary! – to feature something fresh, vibrant and forward-looking in the first Commandress post of 2013.

Let’s begin with a gorgeous color that you will have many chances to admire – and wear – this year: Emerald.

Pantone 2013 color of the year - emerald green - pantone 17-5641 - spring 2013 colors green emerald

If you love color, Pantone’s website is like a virtual playground. In addition to maintaining a standardized color system that is used in countless industries worldwide, Pantone develops extremely influential color trend forecasts. When Pantone declares the “Color of the Year” – or releases its semi-annual fashion color report for spring or fall – designers and store buyers really listen.

In addition to Emerald, here is the full range of colors included in the Pantone Fashion Color Report – Spring 2013:

Pantone Spring 2013 Colors

I, for one, can’t wait to see these pretty colors in action! Which brings me to the focus of today’s post: How to add these lovely Spring 2013 colors to your wardrobe now.

First, odds are high that you can shop your closet for some items you already own in these colors. Take some time to hunt them down and decide whether each item is (1) outdated – and should be swapped, donated or sold; (2) needs alterations or repairs – and set aside time to drop it off; or (3) is ready to wear – right now!

Second, January is one of the best times of the year to find coats at great prices and on sale. Why not take an early Spring Break from the same old black, brown and grey outerwear that can look so drab and uninspired? You can cheer up your Fall/Winter wardrobe with any of the bright and affordable Emerald coats featured here – or any coat in a fun and unexpected color. As a bonus, these coats will also be perfect for cool days in early spring.

Helene Berman Single Breasted Reefer Coat - Emerald Cobalt - affordable wool cashmere coat - pantone spring colors to wear now

Oh wow – what a delightful color and an elegant, tailored fit! The Helene Berman Single Breasted Reefer Coat in a wool/cashmere/nylon blend is available in Emerald (limited sizes only) and bright Cobalt for $298 from Nordstrom – and eligible for free shipping. P.S. – What is a “reefer” coat? It’s a cousin of the Peacoat with similar naval origins. A reefer coat is generally close-fitting, but can be single- or double-breasted.

Target Merona Womens Classic Long Wool Coat - on sale - affordable fall winter coat - fall 2012 colors - spring 2013 colors

Here’s a pretty green coat with a fabulous magenta lining. The Merona Womens Classic Long Wool Coat in Bunkerhill Green is currently available for $41.98 (originally $50.00) from Target – and eligible for free shipping when you spend $50+ on select items. This coat comes in several other great colors (with contrasting linings) – including Sapphire Burst, Wild Cherry and Wowzer Red.

Calvin Klein Coat, Tab-Waist Wool-Blend Tweed - Green Red - Macy's

Here’s a shorter and more casual emerald coat. The Calvin Klein Wool-Blend Tweed Coat is currently available in Green and Red from Macy’s for $109.99 (originally $129.99) – and eligible for free shipping.

Calvin Klein Lady Coat - emerald green coat 2013 - Green, Shocking Pink and Black coat - Bloomingdale's

This Calvin Klein coat is a similar style to the coat shown above, but looks more formal because of the dark buttons and knee-length hem. The Calvin Klein Lady Coat is available in Green, Shocking Pink and Black for $274 from Bloomingdale’s – and eligible for free shipping.

1/3/2013 Update: Great news! The Calvin Klein Lady Coat is on sale for $164.40 from Bloomingdale’s through 1/15/2013.

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You can look forward to a Commandress Color Week for Spring 2013 early this year.

In the meantime, you can also admire fashion and style images featuring these colors on the Commandress Pinterest Boards Colors – Spring/Summer 2013.

Disclosure: this post includes affiliate links for Bloomingdale’s, Macy’s, Nordstrom and Target.