It’s easy to fall into the trap of autumn “fashion autopilot.” Every year, as summer winds down, September signals the time when we pull out the timeless, tried and true wardrobe staples from the back of our closets. Suede, thigh high boots. Chunky plaid scarves. Oversized burnt orange sweaters. We trade in the light, airy fabrics of summer for darker tones and moody hues. And while some of these fall classics remain some of my favorites, when we head to our favorite boutiques and websites to shop for a few of the must-have pieces of the season, things may look a bit different this year.
Since the pandemic began times have been challenging, sad and sometimes filled with doom and gloom. For many of us, 2021 signaled resilience, strength and hope. This season, as we look at life through a post-quarantine lens, the fashion industry has reinvented the autumn color palette. And it’s no surprise. Brighter hues may symbolize our hope and optimism for brighter days ahead.
In my day job, I wear a few different hats as a publicist, spokesperson and marketer. Over the last few months I’ve often been asked about the lessons the pandemic has taught me. Certainly one of the most important has been learning to pivot and adapt to change during what can be described — both vaguely and appropriately — as uncertain times. I’ve learned to handle whatever challenges come my way with courage, strength and grace, but most of all, I have learned the importance of resilience — and of keeping an optimistic mindset. Throughout history, we have often seen fashion as a means of self-expression during times of social unrest — offering sentiments of peace, hope and love. Resilience has long been a recurring theme in fashion, as well. Everything old becomes new again, eventually. Trends and designs often bounce back.
We can’t always control what’s happening around us, but we can always be in control of our mindset — whether that’s positive or negative is up to us. Taking a lead from this season’s top trends, I’m manifesting vibrancy, joy and a bright future. Here are a few fall fashion staples to rock this season:
Bright Colors Throughout history, fashion usually takes its cue as a sign of the times. Many of us look forward to better, brighter days ahead. Often summertime is when we see vibrant colors, but throughout Fall Fashion Week we saw many top designers spotlighting yellows, blues and other bright hues. Perhaps it’s all those months of going nowhere that is giving way to this trend of wanting to make an impact now that the world has opened up. One of the most seamless ways to wear the color trend for autumn is to color block. If the color block approach is too bold, other ways to rock this trend include layering, as well as opting for a more neutral palette for your outfit and adding a bright, pop of color through your shoes or your accessorizes (earrings, cuffs, or necklaces).
Dress: Laundry by Shelli Segal ($128)
(Macy’s, Hamilton Mall/Mays Landing)
Shoes and handbags are the ultimate statement pieces. I’m always looking for a good steal on dresses, suits, jackets — you name it — but I don’t mind splurging on a great pair of stilettos. These bright Jimmy Choo suede pumps are a great way to incorporate a bit of brightness into your outfit.
Shoes: Jimmy Choo (Nicole 90 Pump, jimmychoo.com, $850)
Oversized JacketsNineties trends have been re-emerging for the last several years — tiny futuristic shades inspired by The Matrix; hairstyles that incorporate lots of layers a la Monica and Rachel; and the more relaxed, comfy fit of baggy jeans. One of this season’s hottest trends is oversized outerwear. From long coats to leather coats, shirt jackets and blazers, the big and baggy trend is here in big way this fall.
H&MLong Shirt Jacket — Light blue melange — Ladies — H&M US (hm.com)
Long Coat — Light beige — Ladies — H&M US (hm.com)