First and foremost, your feet and trousers are the most prone to getting wrecked by the rain. Rain boots can run the gamut from fun and youthful to seriously chic, even mimicking the style of a riding boot. As we tend to think back to our childhood days of jumping in puddles and mud, we'll start with the more whimsical versions. Target has a huge selection of simple, printed rubber wellies that range in price from $19.99-$22.99. These certainly won't break the bank! We particularly like the Star Spots and Sassy Stripe Rain Boots, both $19.99. If you'd like something a bit sturdier, try these White-Stripe Wellies ($47.60, J.Crew).
There will be days however when your required to look chic, which means your outerwear must similarly adhere. It's common now for labels to produce rain boots that are far more refined than their predecessors. Both these Jeffrey Campbell Tweed Welly Rain Boots ($44.95-$64.95, Amazon.com) and these Etienne Aigner Wakeley Wellington Boots ($59.25, Amazon.com almost double as a pair of riding boots, except these are impervious to rain, mud, and scuffing. One of the stalwart's in quality raingear, Hunter, weighs in with the Brown Rubber and Canvas 'Lady N' Boots ($64.99, Bluefly.com). Still, our absolute favorite are these Oh Deer! Ice Princess Black Patent Leather Boots ($68.99, Overstock.com). They're not technically rain boots, but the patent leather repels water and they only require a simple wipe down each time you wear them. Plus, it doesn't get any sleeker than a shiny black boot.
Our best spring outfits are usually light and airy -- and most definitely not prepared for wind and rain. Hence the need for a trench coat, which is perhaps the most useful of wardrobe staples. The end all for the timeless piece is of course Burberry (it was invented by the label's namesake, Thomas Burberry), but since we won't even pretend to be able to afford a $1000+ coat, we found several other reasonable options. One of the best deals we've found is this Daisy Fuentes City Central Trench Coat ($34, Kohl's), but if you want a longer trench (which is great during bouts of horizontal rain) then try the Priorities Cotton 'Angelina' Belted Trenchcoat in Sand, which is more Burberry-esque anyway ($99, Bluefly.com). Of course, spring is the time when we like to revisit color, after months of cold and sometimes dreary dressing. Get ready to be all sunshine and rainbows with this lemon-colored Michael Kors Cotton-Blend Hooded Belted Trench ($108, also Bluefly.com).
Just imagine looking down on a sea of black umbrellas -- pretty drab, huh? Why not stand out from the crowd even on the grayest of days? For those of us harboring a girly side, this Red Frilly Umbrella ($10, RedHatsandMore.com) is perfect. The ruffled edge reminds us of a Southern Belle's parasol. If you prefer just a hint of color, try the Felix Rey Black Polka Dot Heart Folding Umbrella ($30, Bluefly.com). The red heart is appliqued onto either a brown or black polka dot background. Of course, if you're concerned about how your umbrella will match the rest of your ever-changing outfit, you could go for this Bubble Manual Stick Umbrella in Clear ($14.99, Target), which actually offers the best coverage because of its tent-like shape. Finally, you can opt to go designer with your umbrella. This Marc by Marc Jacobs Umbrella ($58, NET-A-PORTER.com) is a lovely mix of dark coral and fuschia in a typically retro Marc print. But even though we'd love to twirl a lovely looking umbrella on our shoulder every time the weather is fussy, you can't always plan for the rain, and a full size umbrella isn't fun to lug around on a daily basis. So be sure to throw this ultra small and light Totes Micron Umbrella ($14.95, LuggagePoint.com) into your handbag. It's tiny enough that you won't notice the added weight, and you'll be glad you have it when that clear sky suddenly breaks out into torrential downpour. Your carefully coiffed hair will thank you as well.
So don't let a little (or a lot) of rain get you down this spring. With our picks for boots, coats, and umbrellas, you'll look fabulous -- rain or shine!
-- Lindsay Sakraida