Whenever I think about seasonal colors, textures or patterns, I remember Meryl Streep’s famous line as Miranda Priestly in TDWP: “Florals? For Spring. Groundbreaking.” Although there are genius designers and fashion houses who DO deliver groundbreaking silhouettes in unexpected colors and patterns, there’s always a safe baseline to dressing for Resort/ Spring/ Summer and Pre-Fall/ Fall/ Winter. Similar to florals, sheer fabrics and punchy colors for the warmer months, fashion in the cooler months is manifested through layers of earth and jewel tones, knit textures, leather and suede (not just shoes), real and faux fur and other cozy elements. Today, I’m reviewing some of my forever Fall essentials, as well as simple ways to incorporate the season’s newest trends.


Similar to having your swim wardrobe ready to go for Summer, there are things you should have on deck for Fall and Winter dressing. I probably sound like a broken record, but having investment pieces to fall back on year after year makes it easy to transition from one season to the next. My Fall essentials are ones that I put serious thought into before purchasing, keeping in mind that they’ll be retired to the back of my closet when the temperatures start rising, and back to the front they go when the leaves start changing the following year. Starting with tops and working our way down, these are items I make sure I have for Fall/ Winter:


Sweaters are a no-brainer for Fall and Winter. What you should make sure to have in your sweater collection is various weights to match any occasion. There will be times where a super thick sweater is appropriate, but there are also times where you’ll want a lighter-weight sweater joined with layers for added warmth, because there’s nothing worse than being a little *too* toasty at a meeting or holiday party.

Shown, starting with top row, left to right: J.Crew V-neck Sweater with Side Buttons, Zara Ribbed Turtleneck, Zara Knit Sweater with Pocket, Zara Ribbed Knit Sweater, Zara Basic Turtleneck, H&M Rib-knit Turtleneck Sweater


Sure, plaid and houndstooth are critical elements in a Fall/ Winter wardrobe. But Winter florals are too! Find pieces with florals in Fall and wintry colors, and be sure to avoid flowers that have a Spring or Summer look to them, like daisies and sunflowers. Pair Winter floral dresses with boots, tights or leggings and outwear in leather, suede or fur for a fun and contrasting look.

Shown: H&M Chiffon Dress, Zara Floral Print Dress, Zara Limited Edition Printed Cropped Top


You can only wear pants so often, amiright? Winter skirts are an important component of your cold weather wardrobe, and fabric is key. Thicker fabrics will keep you warm, and leather will take your outfit from 1 to chic. Take your pick, and either way, you’ll love the result.

Shown: H&M Paper-bag Skirt, H&M Faux Leather Skirt, Zara Animal Print Skirt, Zara Leather Midi Skirt, Zara Special Edition Pareo Skirt

neutral coats

Unless you have an unlimited budget, inject color into your Fall/ Winter outfits by way of sweaters, scarves, bottoms, shoes or accessories, and keep your coats neutral. Coats should be considered investment pieces, and when you stick with the color basics, like camel, charcoal, ivory/ white and black, your outerwear is set for any outfit for years to come.

Shown: CHICWISH Self-Tied Bowknot Double-Breasted Blazer, Just for Your Tenderness Cape Coat, Dream with You Open Front Wool-Blended Coat


Flat or heeled, mid-calf or over the knee, boots come in all shapes and sizes AND keep your feet warm. That means they are a necessity, so why not get creative with them? Comfort aside, look for boots in fun colors, with fun details like laces, fur, studs or animal patterns.

Shown: Sam Edelman Tenlee Shearling Hiker Boot, Hai Knee High Boot, Raelle Pointed Toe Bootie


I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again – trends can be tricky, but when you have a good foundation (in this case, all the Fall essentials outlined above) adding in a few trend pieces here and there makes for a nice change of pace in an otherwise classic wardrobe. This year’s Fall runways didn’t’ disappoint, so much so that I’m even tempted to add in some uncharted styles!


Brocade, jacquard and velvet were all over the runways this year, and I’m here for it! There’s something very cozy and romantic about all 3, and that’s what Fall and Winter are all about, right? These dramatic fabrics can be incorporated literally anywhere, from tops and jackets to pants and shoes, and make a big difference in even the simplest of outfits!

Shown: Zara Balloon Sleeve Jacquard Top (fun fact, this was featured in Season 3 of Dynasty!), H&M Brocade Dress, Zara Limited Edition Jacquard Jacket


While chunky knits and color can make a statement, grandiose sleeves are an unexpected and fun way to liven up an outfit, especially when more fabric means more warmth. There are great options in blouses and sweaters alike, just make sure you have layers that can accommodate the larger-than-life-ness. I suggest a cape! OR even better, find a coat that has statement sleeves!

Shown: COS Puff Sleeve Knitted Top, Zara Sweater with Tie, Zara Wool Blend Balloon Sleeve Sweater


Fringe for Fall and Winter isn’t rocket science, but it seems every year bigger and better options are released! Fringe is another trend that can be found in anything from tops and dresses, to any accessory you can think of, and luckily you don’t have to look very hard for any of it. If Fringe is a little too 60’s for you, tassels are a suitable alternative.

Shown: H&M Cardigan with Fringe, Zara Split Suede Bucket Bag with Fringe


I have always loved the look of sheer, borderline-boudoir pieces, and slinky silhouettes saturated runways for this Fall’s fashion. Considering just how sheer some of these pieces can get, make sure you have plenty of layers because lace certainly doesn’t keep you warm, but makes a beautiful and unexpected addition to a happy hour outfit. Not shown is this stunning BCBGMaxazria Gown, that would drop jaws at any holiday function.

Shown: Zara Printed Organza Blouse, Zara Embroidered Dress with Beading, Bardot Francesca Top

What are your Fall and Winter essentials, and what trends are you loving for 2020?

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