Susan Sokol has earned a reputation as one of the fashion industry’s most esteemed senior executives. Currently the President and COO of J. Mendel, she has served in presidential positions for global brands — Vera Wang, Michael Kors, Donna Karan International, and Calvin Klein Inc.

A true native New Yorker, Sokol was educated at Finch College in English Literature. She frequently lectures on the fashion industry at Pace University’s Lubin School of Business, where she is Executive in Residence; she has also lectured on Business and Fashion for graduate and undergraduate students at Harvard Business School, Columbia University, and Northwestern University. A former board member of several nonprofit organizations, she is currently a member of the President’s Council for Sanctuary for Families, which provides support for domestic violence victims.

What are you our favorite trends for fall? I love the fresh look of winter white, especially when it’s accessorized with a gorgeous new fur-lined leather tote bag from J. Mendel.

Winter White Look #2 and Fur-Lined Brown Leather Tote from J. Mendel, Fall 2012 Collection.

What are your five favorite fall essentials? A new fabulous black cocktail dress, an interesting and versatile fur coat, a must-have new handbag, the right new boot, and a gorgeous new gown to wear to holiday parties!

Black Dress Look # 9; Warm Neutral Fur Coat Look # 29; Chiffon Gown Look #39; and Leather Handbag from J. Mendel, Fall 2012 Collection.

What are your favorite fall accessories? Boots, a fox-fur vest, and a fur-lined J. Mendel handbag.

How do you transition chic-ly from summer to fall? Transitional pre-fall pieces really work best: dresses in fabrics that are lightweight enough and give a nice seasonal color change.

What is your favorite fall fragrance? I always have Chanel No. 5!

Your necessary fall indulgence? An alligator dress and a multi-fur intarsia coat. . . all J. Mendel, of course!

Black Alligator Dress Look # 18 and Multi-fur Intarsia Coat Look # 27 from J. Mendel, Fall 2012 Collection.

Your favorite fall destination? A favorite getaway for years has been Barbados.

A Barbados Beach. Photo by gusdiaz via Flickr

What books or films are on your list to see and read this fall?Gone Girl,” by Gillian Flynn, and Les Misérables, starring Anne Hathaway.


Join the conversation

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

  • ellen sue jacobson September 8, 2012 at 7:00 am

    Don;t miss the Intouchables, a French flick with so much heart, it will bring tears to your eyes and depth to your soul. If the two male leads don;t get a nod @ the Academy Awards, I will be shocked.

  • quintessence September 7, 2012 at 8:04 am

    I ADORE J Mendel so no surprise that I loved all your fall picks!! That green dress was one of my favorites from last runway. Looking forward to seeing spring next week!!

  • Patricia Yarberry Allen, M.D. September 7, 2012 at 7:19 am

    Thanks for sharing your favorite selections for fall, Susan. That Mendel handbag is a beauty.

    I know that your career has been exciting but I also know that you must work longer hours than one can imagine. It is wonderful that you are mentoring and teaching young people about the possibilities of success for women at the top in the fashion world, both with what you say and how you have lived your life.

    We look forward to hearing from you again about holiday favorites for winter!


    Pat Allen