11/01/2012 09:21 am ET Updated Nov 01, 2012

One Bold Statement Coat For Fall Is The Most Versatile Item You Could Buy (PHOTOS)

Chelsea Brownridge, a non-profit consultant, spends her days jetting between the different offices of various clients, one of which is housed right here at Huffington Post: igniteGOOD, the consultancy firm that she and Natalie Alhonte Braga founded earlier this year. Most of her clients are pretty creative and work in casual environments, so she enjoys a certain freedom when it comes to what she wears. Her sense of style is anchored in her southern roots. A North Carolina native, she attended UNC at Chapel Hill which was preppy: think sundresses and Polo shirts. After graduating with a degree in economics, Brownridge went on to work as a financial management consultant for IBM in Washington D.C. where the dress code was all suits, all the time.

Now that she is based in New York City, Brownridge describes her usual uniform as "put together." Her daily look is casual: jeans and tops, with some fun accessories. Her best accessories are borrowed from her mom, whose style is funky (and who is pretty liberal in her lending policies!).

We challenged Chelsea to try out one of this season's trends: the statement coat. The topper in question -- a charcoal and navy animal-print coat from Ann Taylor -- actually kind of went with everything. Check her out in her original look, and then four looks where she incorporated the coat.

The Statement Coat

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