Savvy shoppers can rejoice — it’s very stylish to be frugal and resourceful. “So last season” is also “so this season.” Fashion is leaving behind its fickle nature and blurring boundaries, with some of fall’s biggest trends falling into a seasonless style movement. Extreme case in point: Fall runways bloomed with floral prints and sizzled with minis. But beyond those trends, it’s easy to incorporate items that may seem summery into your present wardrobe.
Bobbie Thomas, TODAY Style editor and author of the Buzz column for In Touch Weekly, helps you get more mileage from your purchases with tips for welcoming in year-round wear.
You’ve been stocking up on dresses for the past six months or more, so don’t put them away yet! Rather than storing spring and summer staples, the idea is to weave them into winter. One way to do this is by wearing two or three sundresses together. Slip on the longest-length dress first. Next, add a shorter frock so that the bottom of the first dress peeks out for a fun hemline. Then, add a shirtdress. Be sure to leave it unbuttoned and use a belt to create shape. Finally, pull on winter tights and a chunky knit sweater for a soft and cozy fall look. Rebecca Taylor's Fall 2008 collection is a great example of this idea. (RebeccaTaylor.com)
Rethink florals As mentioned above, the fall runways boasted bouquets of blossoms, inspiring us to reach for romantic prints. For a sophisticated spin on garden-inspired garb, pair patterns with dark and neutral color palettes. Black, navy, beige and gray will balance the whimsy of pretty pastels and playful brights. Edgy accessories such as chain belts, studded bags or black leather boots will accent the feminine fabrics with an unexpected and ironic twist of interest.
Redefine warm-weather fabrics Break the rules and experiment with new texture combinations. Innovative layering can give old favorites a new lease on life. I absolutely love the way Wenlan Chia styled thick cable-knit sweaters over flowing floor-length dresses for the final looks of her fall Twinkle runway show (TwinklebyWenlan.com). The creative contrast brought new life to summer's must-have maxi dress. You could also try pairing a linen blazer with a cashmere sweater (and silk scarf), or wearing a sheer summer tank over a turtleneck (ala Vera Wang). Lace, crochet and even eyelet trim can be considered in colder months.
Reinvent summer accessories Keep your favorite warm-weather accents in the spotlight this season. Before you store your sandals, try embracing the peekaboo shoe trend. While some consider hosiery and open-toe shoes a no-no, many modern style mavens say yes-yes. Trendsetters are moving fashion forward by walking into winter pairing opaque tights with peep-toes and even strappy platforms.
Last but not least, hang onto your fun-in-the-sun keepsakes. Mix your island-inspired shell and wooden pieces — and even rope and raffia braided accents — with chunky chains and bold jewels for a striking statement this fall.