Most people love October for the rainbow leaves, the crisp air, and the pumpkin spice everything. I love it for the fashion.
Fall is when silhouettes get more structured, beautiful colors like burgundy, eggplant, and forest green reemerge, and that huge stash of turtlenecks I have in my closet goes on rotation. Forget Starbucks PSLs, autumn style is everything.
Here are five fall trends to get you started this season!
1. Plaid on Plaid
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In May '68, France was rocked by student revolt, most strikingly by young women who took to the streets to protest their constrained standing. The Autumn-Winter 2018-2019 collection designed by Maria Grazia Chiuri pays tribute to that memorable period, sometimes through something as subtle as the addition of a crossbody strap that allows the hands freedom. Models in college checks stroll through Paris sporting 'Saddle' and 'J'Adior' bags that do just that. #DiorAW18 Creative Director: #MariaGraziaChiuri Photographer: @Pamela_Hanson
Plaid is a ubiquitous fall print, but this season it’s turned up to 11. Windowpane, houndstooth (does that count as a plaid?), and all sizes of checks are flying off the shelves in the entire color spectrum.
Coats and blazers are an easy way to start, but the pattern can be found everywhere from pants and skirts to shoes and scarves. Try mixing different kinds of plaids together for a trendy suit look.
Fendi: plaid coat with pleated skirt.
Dior: slouchy plaid suit.
Zara: plaid dress with shoulder pleats.
Banana Republic: plaid block-heel pump.
2. Midi Dresses
I can’t even express how much I love this trend. After decades of skin-baring hem- and necklines, the chicest item on the scene right now is the long-sleeved midi dress.
This has prompted some ironic pearl-clutching from fashion commentators wondering if this is “the end of cleavage.” While those comfortable showing more will still find plenty to like this fall (like the mini skirt suit), I think it’s wonderful that women who prefer to dress modestly finally have more stylish options.
Zara: scarf-print midi dress (becoming a budget price-defying favorite among the fashion crowd as well as with yours truly). There’s also this wear-all-weekend T-shirt dress version with scarf-print inserts.
Zara: ‘70s striped, belted midi dress.
Really, just check out Zara’s entire midi dress selection, they are killing this trend.
3. Moody Florals and Animal Prints
Minimalism is definitely out this season. The more prints you mix and match the better, but animal print, from traditional leopard to wilder iterations like zebra, is leading the print game. If you’re bold enough, try mixing an animal print with a plaid floral print in the same color family. Or if you’re so inclined, do all three, as was on display at Michael Kors.
Michael Kors: botanical-print midi dress.
4. Blazers, Blazers, Blazers
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I can already tell that I am going to purchase way too many blazers this season. Pinstriped blazers, shoulder-pad blazers, velvet blazers, double-breasted blazers, bright blazers, whatever your favorite blazer entails, this is its moment in the sun. Pair them with skinny jeans (slits have revived them), or in matchy-matchy suit combos with trousers or miniskirts.
H&M: double-breasted pinstripe blazer.
Zara: orange corduroy blazer.
Polo Ralph Lauren: windowpane wool blazer.
Lauren Ralph Lauren: houndstooth double-breasted soft blazer.
5. Princess Diana Meets ‘Clueless’
The decades are dueling for prominence this fall. The ‘70s are winning the palette war: prominently featured colors include mustard yellows and oranges paired with beiges and browns, with shots of blue or lilac to keep things interesting. But the strong-shoulder trend (and the puff sleeve) is going nowhere and the maximalist tone, the ‘80s influence is still going strong this season, especially when combined with plaid-on-plaid, “Clueless”-style.
Givenchy: strong shoulder coat.
C/MEO Collective (rental): puff-sleeve 80s blouse.
Chloe (rental): patchwork stripe jeans.
Michael Kors: Bright preppy plaid suit (hello, Cher Horowitz).