Former TV news anchor and reporter Mary Murnane hails from Chicago and writes about style, culture, design and life on her namesake blog. Her Modern Classic style is simple, chic, ultra polished and elegant. Mary has an amazing coat collection and a keen eye for beautiful fabrics and pieces that make an impactful statement.

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Classics that fit perfectly are hard to beat. When purchasing new pieces Mary looks for excellent quality fabrics with great drape and unique design details to set her outfits apart. Here it’s the saddle leather side-belting of the pencil skirt that turns things up a notch. Tucking the button-down shirt into the knee-length skirt draws attention to the belt, and creates a long leg line. Leopard print pointy toe pumps add subtle oomph. A streamlined bag in a rich brown that matches the belt detail on the skirt, and works beautifully with the navy and light blue colour palette, completes this elegant polished look.

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Bundling up during Chicago Winters is a necessity. No wonder that our blogger has an enviable coat collection. Mary dresses up a casual outfit consisting of black skinny jeans and a cashmere jumper with an oversized camel hooded shearling coat. The cream borders add visual contrast and keep her extra toasty. Wearing skinnies tucked into ankle boots tempers the volume of the topper. The cinnamon suede booties with three buckle straps provide textural interest. Black and white animal print gloves form a fun contrast with the warm-toned coat. A small pebbled leather clutch further ties the black and camel together.

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A fun twist on the festive suit. Mary shakes things up by opting for a feminine bustier instead of the more ubiquitous black blazer or a tuxedo jacket. A great idea for a holiday party, work reception or date night. Layering the bustier over an untucked classic white shirt creates a fab graphic colour block effect. The cropped tailored trousers streamline the look. Showing some ankle skin and sporting refined black pointy toe pumps strikes the right balance between androgynous chic and subtle allure. Our blogger’s ruffled tomato red clutch, sleek blonde hair and pink lipstick are the ladylike finishing touches.

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It took several tries before Mary found a way of styling her blanket scarf in a way that felt fab instead of frumpy. In the end securing it with a kilt pin and creating a pseudo-poncho look did the trick for her. Our blogger layered the plaid scarf over a longer length ink turtleneck sweater and trendy cropped skinny jeans. A casual and easy combination that lets the beautiful colours and big plaid pattern do all the talking. The fitted silhouette of the skinnies offsets the volume of the scarf. Baring some ankle skin also adds structure. Plus, the colour of Mary’s suede buckle ankle boots is low-contrast against her skin, which lengthens the leg line. A structured crossbody in a rich shade of brown and classic pearl stud earrings finish off the look.

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A trendy outfit with a gorgeous brown suede A-line skirt is the star of the show. It’s also a great example of how you can wear a boho item like this buttoned skirt in a very crisp and modern way. Pairing booties with taller shafts with a midi skirt can be tricky but Mary pulls it off beautifully. She has layered a chunky knit sleeveless sweater over a black turtleneck body suit. The cropped pullover showcases the entirety of the skirt, which creates vertical integrity. The black boots are high-contrast against our blogger’s pale skin, but choosing a heeled style that snugly hugs the leg helps streamline the look. Baring part of the leg also adds structure. A small cognac crossbody with chain strap is a further fun nod to ‘70s Boho style.

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Mary Murnane - 6

Sophisticated chic with tailored layering and a monochrome colour palette. Mary is sporting wide-legged trousers with beautiful drape that are the perfect length for her platform pumps. She’s paired them with a crisp striped button-down worn untucked under a blue pullover that is just slouchy enough. Belting the sweater adds a bit of structure. There’s some subtle pattern mixing going on with the striped shirt sleeves, hem and collar peeking out from under the marled pullover and the self-patterned trousers. The green snakeskin T-strap pumps add more visual interest and are just plain fun. A simple black wristlet is the accessory of choice. Finally, our blogger’s sleek blonde do and polished make-up complete the stylish Modern Classic picture.

I can’t wait to hear what you think of Mary’s elegant and chic Modern Classic style. Let us know in the comments, and then hop on over to her blog to check out the rest of her fab outfits.