By Randi Packard
Have you been lying on the beach or beside the pool, combing through a stack of magazines, and wondering just how you’re going to rock those fall trends you keep seeing on their pages? It can seem daunting to try to pull off fashion’s latest “must have” and make it look good when you don’t have the proportions of a Karlie Kloss (or any model, actually).
I feel you. Although fall’s boots and sweaters may seem like a distant thought while you sweat it out in the last days of summer, in reality they are easier to find in stores this time of year than sandals and swimwear.
While you’ve been swimming and sunning and surfing, I’ve been sifting through this season’s offerings to provide you with an edit of four of the most wearable trends, along with some very specific pointers on how to wear them. And by “wear them,” I mean for a woman who does not have the aforementioned model body and probably does not spend her days at a high fashion job. In other words, for a lot of the women I know.
The 70’s Flare Jean
If you have looked at any magazine, blog, or fashion website you know by now that the 70’s is THE trend for fall. Chloe, Ralph Lauren, and Rebecca Minkoff are just a few of the many brands that have jumped on this ubiquitous trend. One of the easiest ways to pull this look off is with a pair of flare jeans.
The trick to wearing a flare is to have your pants tailored to where they are almost touching the floor while you’re in the shoes that you’ll wear them with most often. Clogs, platforms, chunky heeled sandals or boots are best (and comfortable) options and the height will make your legs look a mile long. A cropped top, button down shirt or tee tucked in will define the waist.
I can’t think of a denim brand that is NOT making a flare this season. Some of my favorites are 7 for All Mankind’s “A” Pocket Flare jean, Level 99’s Dahlia Flare, and Gap’s 1969 Resolution Skinny Flares.
The Fringe Boot
Not all boot trends for fall are really conducive to everyday life, the office or carpools. Hello over the thigh boots! One trend that can work is a fringe boot. You can get a lot of mileage out of this fun footwear statement. I suggest pairing them with leggings and an oversized top or with skinny jeans, a tee, and blazer, or for date night try a bare leg with a short skirt. Great options are Sam Edelman’s Belinda, Stuart Weitzman’s Mane, and Joie’s Loren boot.
The Chunky Knit Sweater
The first word that comes to mind when I think of the next trend is cozy. The trend is chunky knitwear and it’s one of my all-time favorites. Whether you knit your own sweater using one of Wool in the Gang’s “knit kits” or buy LL Bean’s Signature Cotton Tunic Fisherman sweater the key is to balance proportions. Wear your favorite straight leg trousers with a chunky turtleneck, a pencil skirt with a chunky crew, or a silky dress under a chunky cardigan so you don’t look, well…chunky.
The Suede Day Bag
The final trend that you will be seeing a lot of this fall is the suede day bag. I love the richness and touch of suede, and I am excited about this trend because I seem to have a closet of leather bags only. One word of warning, stick to darker colors for an everyday bag so your denim won’t rub off on them! Some great options are: Ann Taylor’s Essex bag, Elizabeth and James’ Cynnie messenger bag, and for a real splurge Gucci’s Jackie bucket bag.
Even though the four items I chose to highlight are definitely “having a moment,” they are all versatile and classic enough that you can certainly wear them again next fall and the one after that, etc., etc…. When you buy something you love and it fits you well, it becomes your own personal statement piece, no matter which way the fashion wind is blowing that season.
Fall, and you, have never looked so good.
Randi Packard is a seasoned market editor and tastemaker whose experience extends from the world of luxury fashion and accessories, to the contemporary, bridal and swimwear markets. As a contributing market editor, Randi is currently lending her experience to such notable publications such as Lucky magazine, Lucky.com, ArchetypeMe.com, People Style Watch magazine and Real Simple magazine. She is also a consulting creative director for a luxury accessories line.