By  on October 10, 2007

Fall shoppers are still dress crazy, but they're adding jackets to their lists, according to more than a dozen better- and moderate-priced retailers. Slimmer dresses continue to sell well, and jackets, which had lackluster sales in last fall's delayed chill, emerge this season in cropped, swingy shapes. Knits still show up in sweater dresses, cardigans and tops, and men's wear fabrics find their way into jackets and dresses alike. A gray palette is accentuated on the floor — and in outfits — with pops of jewel tones, from ruby to sapphire.

Store: Lord & Taylor
Best-selling item: Jill Stuart jacket and turtleneck.
Price: $265 for the jacket and $155 for the turtleneck.
Why: "This fall is all about the jacket, made more exciting by the new shapes and updated fabrications," said LaVelle Olexa, senior vice president, advertising, sales promotion and public relations. "Men's wear fabrics in an updated, closer-to-the-body silhouette have been received exceptionally well. Turtlenecks are the perfect complement to the new jacket shape and they are selling very well too, especially when a touch of bright color adds a fresh twist."

Store: Club Monaco
Best-selling item: Sweater dress
Price: $189
Why: "This piece hits all the right notes: The sweater dress is so important and versatile for the season," according to a spokeswoman. "It is great over tights with boots or as a layering piece with a shirt and skinny belt."

Store: J. Crew
Best-selling item: Striped town coat from the J. Crew Collection.
Price: $390
Why: "It's not just our designer's favorite — the fashion editors loved it, too," said a spokeswoman. "Our exclusive design combines wide, textured rugby stripes with vintage-style bracelet sleeves in a shape that looks elegant on everyone."

Store: Kenneth Cole New York
Best-selling item: Mainstream sleeveless zip-front dress.
Price: $198
Why: "Dresses are still doing extremely well — every dress style in our stores is selling out," according to a spokeswoman. "In addition, zippers are a huge trend, so anything with the zipper is selling — shoes, boots, gloves, etc."

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