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Utility For All—A Guide To Practical-Yet-Elevated Dressing

This season’s take on the military-inspired trend is strictly utilitarian, featuring go-with-everything earth tones like moss, sage, khaki, and beige.

From thick knits to cargo pants, this season is all about streamlined versatility of high-quality, utility-inspired pieces. Structure gives relaxed minimalism a polished edge, while details like thoughtfully placed pockets, belts, drawstrings, and zippers keep things refreshingly functional.

The best part: both men and women have abundant options, whether gravitating toward the avant-garde elegance of Dries Van Noten, the sporty ease of Sacai, or NSF’s relaxed, Californian vibe. Outerwear is great way to embrace the trend—with pea coats, field jackets, vests, and parkas that range from rugged to polished.

Check out some of our favorite utility pieces here, and then head to Barneys to start your fall shopping.

A luxe texture, in this case suede, gives practical shirting an edge.
Thick knits and waffle stitching bring to mind military commando sweaters.
The debut collection from Vis Ā Vis is inspired by men’s uniforms and focuses on beautiful tailoring.
Designer Gabriela Hearst is inspired by her horse-riding, cattle-ranching childhood in Uruguay.
A durable khaki bonded wool-blend elevates joggers into utility pants.
There are many iterations of the classic cargo this season, and NSF's version is more edge than prep.
A structured vest mixes nicely with softer pieces, like silk pants or a dress allowing you to embrace the trend with subtlety.
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