As a founding editor and current editor-at-large of InStyle, Hal Rubenstein has been the authority on fashion for decades. Next month, he’ll bring his expert fashion knowledge to a tangible reality when he launches his own line for HSN. Debuting September 27th, Rubenstein’s eponymous collection will embody the style elements he firmly believes in, namely personal flair and tailored silhouettes (click the photo to get a sneak peek). “I want to teach women how to put a wardrobe together — how to build a wardrobe,” he said of his inspiration. “If you can look in the mirror and figure out what sets you apart from everybody else, then I’ve done my job.” In between promoting his new collection, finalizing his second book and launching his editorial site halrubenstein.com, we tapped into his style encyclopedia of a brain for styling tips, fall trends and more. Read his thoughts below.

What’s the best way to upgrade a ho-hum look?
Women are typically unhappy with their look if doesn’t fit right. Take it to a tailor and have it re-sized/re-shaped, so that it fits you well.

If leather is out of your budget, is it OK to go vegan/faux? Or should you skip it all together?
In this day and age, leather is rarely out of your budget. Be a more aggressive shopper. There are many discount options; outlet stores, warehouse prices, seasonal sales. But if you are going to go faux, stay away from PVC. It’s often too shiny and it’s environmentally unsafe. There are some fine vegan leathers out there, and just make sure they have depth. If you can put it on and fool one of your friends, then you’re good.

Over your multi-decades-long fashion career, whose fashion evolution has kept you interested? Who keeps it fresh year after year?
I think women are too diverse and fascinating to boil it down to one. I’m going to choose three completely different types of women – Emma Watson: Her transition from adolescence to adulthood has been handled beautifully and with such grace. Cate Blanchett: She understands what clothes can do for her. Michelle Obama: She recognizes the power that clothes have to translate her message as First Lady. She is leveraging her clothing as a tool to relay information and relevance.

Pearls or diamonds?
Always diamonds.

Click through to preview four items from Rubenstein’s 20-piece collection, available September 27 on HSN.com and scroll down to see a video previewing his lineup.

SEE THE PHOTOS

MORE:
Oscars 2013: Hal Rubenstein’s Five Fave Looks 
5 Ways to Make Your Summer Pieces Work for Fall
See Emma Watson’s Transformation Over the Years