I’ll always savor long summer days, but as back to school draws near and autumn is faintly visible on the horizon, I’m ready for a mood shift to the cooler days of a crisp fall. With any change in the season, I’m looking ahead to some of this year’s must-have trends. Sure, not all trends are suited to all people, and some can be downright ridiculous. Exploring the popular styles as we roll into autumn is still fun. Here’s a rundown of upcoming trends, what to try, and what to leave in the store.
Traditionally, when you think of fall fabric, wools and tweeds come to mind. However, this year tradition takes a turn toward leather. The standard leather jacket will forever be in style. This season, though, other leatherette pieces are showing up in stores and online. Leather pants, leather leggings, leather skirts, and even leather blazers are on offer for autumn. My go-to for faux-leather goods is Nordstrom. In fact, I’m waiting on the arrival of a pair of Spanx leatherette leggings from Nordstrom that I’ll use as the base of several fall-time looks. If a leather bottom or jacket is just too much for you, consider leather accessories like bags, watch straps, and of course, shoes.
Speaking of shoes, and particularly boots, I think this may be the season I take the plunge and invest in a pair of over-the-knee boots. Looking through the offerings on DSW, there are many affordable options, like Kelly & Katie’s Targ Over-the-Knee Boot in black or dark taupe. I’m thinking this statement style boot would work with flowy floral dresses and longer cardigans by utilizing the shaft height of the shoe in lieu of tights. If the idea of wearing an OTK boot just seems too cumbersome, then look to a thick-soled loafer for fall. Over on Zappos, there’s the Neutralizer’s Darry Loafer in terracotta, porcelain, or black. These treaded slip-ons provide support and polish. Be sure to pick up some no-show socks so you can wear them as soon as September hits without worrying about sweaty feet.
Another theme of the upcoming season’s trends takes a sportier route. I’m not referring to donning your favorite athlete’s jersey; of course, if that’s your style vibe, by all means, go for it. No, I’m suggesting taking inspiration from upper-crust leisure activities like tennis, golf, and all things equestrian. Single-breasted blazers with slim trousers or varsity-style cardigans and pleated skirts are just two outfit combos for this trend. If that all sounds a bit too preppy, try the sportswear idea with a more sleek and modern approach. Performance gear like Athleta’s Vince jogger and Moto jacket makes for a casual yet chic daily uniform for fall.
You can’t talk about fall trends without talking about outerwear. Each year, a new crop of coat types and silhouettes come into style. This year sees emerging trends in bomber jackets, oversized puffers, faux fur, and teddy coats. Truth be told, none of those jacket shapes feel very flattering to me. I’m less inclined toward bulky outerwear but more so tailored slim overcoats. However, there’s something to be said for feeling all wrapped up and cuddly, especially in late fall. If you’re leaning toward extra-cozy coats, then check out Gap Factory’s quilted chambray bomber jacket for the start of fall, and then transition to colder temps with their Sherpa coat.
As with coats, jeans also go through various style iterations each autumn. This fall sees denim trends not changing much from last year, with higher waists, wider legs, and relaxed fits. Now that I’m over 40 and no longer feel the need to chase the next trendy pair of jeans, I’m going to call this a younger person’s jean silhouette. I still enjoy wearing my less on-trend skinny jeans. However, if you want to experiment with new denim styles and you’re also over 40, I’d recommend going with a 70’s inspired cut of higher waist, fitted thigh, and flared leg like Levi’s High-Rise Flares. For younger folks, you may be able to get away with 80’s-influenced Mom Jeans. Yes, Levi’s literally has denim pants called “Mom Jeans.”
Some other trends I can’t recommend for this season include catsuits, I hope for obvious reasons. The flapper looks with shimmer, sequins, and rhinestones on daytime garments like sweaters and suits, and the deconstructed trend of disheveled knits and tattered denim. Maybe I’m too old now, too practical minded, but I can’t get behind these particular trends. However, if you find these aesthetics adorable, then don’t let me stop you from making them work for you.
For those who could care less about trends and being on-trend, fall classics like chunky knits, dark-wash jeans, and flannel shirts will see anyone through the season in style.