When I worked in retail (many, many moons ago), my back-to-school sales lesson to my staff was to always remember: TBLA. Which translated to: Top, Bottom, Layer, and Accessory. And layering is sincerely my closet’s best direction, no matter the season.
If you shopped in my store, you left with a complete outfit. Every time. More than just a clever way to boost sales, I kid you not that I STILL use that motto when dressing myself – especially for fall. Creating new outfits is essentially limitless. Here are 7 tried-and-true tips for converting your summer
You can wear shorts and even shorter skirts in fall! This weather is obviously not conducive to bare legs (and seriously, most of us skip a couple days of shaving more regularly in cold weather, am I right?). So pairing a cozy pair of tights with these bottoms not only brings a little warmth to your lower half, they add a depth of color or texture to lightweight summer fabrics.
Jackets and blazers and cardigans – oh my! All of the above create a more stylized fall look to anything in your closet. Tank top? Throw on a cardigan! Sundress? Wear to work professionally with the addition of a well-cut blazer. I even wear a few of my lighter jackets as wardrobe outerwear essentials with certain outfits (including my fave: a corduroy number – Squee!).
Boots are the universal accessory item for fall. You can still enjoy a bit of naked leg with a dress or skirt or even tuck in pant legs (including cropped pants, which is my perfect way to convert summer pants into fall). A pair of chunky boots can easily dress up or down any outfit based on its style, heel height and material.
I abhor when open-toe shoe season ends. Thankfully, catalogs and stylists are embracing the multiple-season use of our footwear, adding a short, nylon ankle sock with peep toes in summer-to-fall outfits. I think this look works best when contrasting shoe to sock color, paired with an adorable printed dress.
It’s strange, but when the weather starts dipping, my neck is the first body part to feel the effects. I love scarves for this very reason. Made in a variety of fabrics, sizes and colors – with tassels, hand knits and even patterns – a scarf can be tied or wrapped in numerous ways for new and exciting outfit creations. I have a stack of them. And the street corner Pashmina lady LOVES when she sees me walking down the street (seriously, 3 for $20 – SOLD!).
Indian summer is not a myth! In fact, just last week, our city experienced 80-degree temps. Dressing up summery clothes with handbags in heavier materials – like leather and suede – or a slouchy, knit hat is incredibly effortless and will instantly adapt a slightly warmer-weather wardrobe for the fall season currently in session. Now, nobody is saying that a purse will keep you warm when it is 50 degrees, so utilize my additional options in this list for when the temperatures begin to seriously drop.
When summer ends, and I rearrange my closet to reflect the certain season, I am almost aghast at the short hemline of some of my dresses. (I’m sorry, but when it’s 90+, I cannot handle the heat OR a lot of coverage). But with some of these clothing pieces can be utilized as tunic tops and paired with your favorite pair of skinny jeans. I find this wardrobe option also works well for those certain transparent fabrics that REQUIRED the use of a slip on a sunny day.
You would think that with how much I complain about the heat, I would embrace the cooler temps. While I certainly enjoy layering fashion, it’s as though my internal heater shuts off completely in September, and then I’m a total freeze baby! How do you convert your summer wardrobe – or seamlessly transition it – to fall?
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