Do you know those people who freak out (some may say disproportionately) each time the weather channel predicts over an inch of snow, who run to the supermarket to grab armloads of canned food and gallons of water then charge all their old dead phones and, after that, make sure there are at least 20 candles plus matches around and a box of batteries all cued up for the flashlight?

That’s me.

I dress according to my snow fears, too. Should the lightest of dustings occur, it is my reflex to reach for two pairs of leggings to layer, one over the other, under a pair of thick camp socks, and then cram it all into a set of sturdy boots. That’s one recipe for cozy — and it’s certainly practical, even when it’s overkill, but it’s not a surefire way to feel fashionably “good.” On the other end of the spectrum, I have been known to go out to dinner post-proper snowstorm in heels because I had a dinner and I panicked and I didn’t know what else to do.

But where I am flustered, stylist Nicole Chapoteau knows what to do. She has mastered the art of Snow Coats Cool. I had a feeling she’d know boots, too (see here for proof). When I emailed her to ask if she’d be down to style this story, she didn’t blink. Actually she did blink and then it was styled, like poof! Because when you’re good at winter dressing I’m pretty sure it’s magic.

Now, if you break it down, it’s also something of an equation. In going through the photos of her styled looks, here’s what I learned:

1) Snow boots look particularly cool with calf-length skirts, perfect for days when there’s snow on the ground but it’s not that cold.

2) Or, instead of pants or leggings, add sparkly Gucci tights.

3) Boots don’t have to be worn the way they arrive in their boxes: take the laces out if your socks are thick enough to hold grip; wear tall socks higher than the shoes’ ankle; fold the boots over where they’ll bend; tie the laces around your ankles and create a paper-bag effect.

4) Going full monochrome (with a suit particularly) makes the boots look intentional rather than utilitarian-for-the-sake-of-a-commute. Don’t tuck the hems.

5) Taking a page out of the Off-White c/o Jimmy Choo collection and wrapping plastic around your boots may seem like a hack rather than a styling tip, but it makes so much sense if you think about it.

K, thinking’s over, I’m in. Me and my boots and my flashlight.

Styled by Nicole Chapoteau. Photos by Edith Young at the Williamsburg HotelModeled by Madison Kirkbride of Wilhemina Models.

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