(BPT) - Fall fashion magazines can easily top 500 pages of skirts, tops, pants, coats and accessories; all deemed “must-haves” for the chilly weather ahead. The choices and trends can be staggering, but just because temperatures are falling doesn’t mean you need to drop a small fortune on a new wardrobe.
Fashion experts from two of the Art Institutes schools share six of the top trends for fall and how you can use them to make the most of the pieces already in your closet.
Animal print – “Look at any magazine and you’re going to see animal print,” says Stefani Bay, fashion instructor at The Illinois Institute of Art – Chicago. She says everything is in animal print. Whether black and white or a crazy color, this trend can be found on garments, shoes, bags and scarves. According to Bay, adding an animal print piece to any outfit in your closet will make you look “of the moment.”
Tweed - “Tweeds are a very important fashion story this fall,” says Emil DeJohn, fashion instructor at The Art Institute of Philadelphia. Each year a variety of tweeds grace the runways of Fashion Week, but this year they are stealing the spotlight, especially in black and white versions of houndstooth, Donegal tweed, and herringbone.
“A tweed jacket is the perfect thing over something old,” says Bay, especially when it’s a colorful tweed over a colorful outfit. Other options include tweed scarves and even handbags.
Leather – “When isn’t leather right?” asks Bay. DeJohn agrees adding whether it’s trim, collar and cuff, or the entire jacket, leather is something every woman should have in her closet this fall. You can find this incredibly versatile textile in jeans, blouses and accents, but according to Bay, the big story for leather is the motorcycle jacket. You can find motorcycle jackets in all price points, made from leather, faux leather, vinyl or patent leather. Added to your closet it will make anything look more current.
Black and white – A perennial favorite of chic women the world over, black and white is a big trend for fall, especially when paired with a bright shocking color, says DeJohn. The perfect way to jazz up black and white is with a punch of the season’s soft orange, citrus green, bright royal blue, gold or royal purple. “You can put anything black and white over a white shirt to look crisp and professional,” says Bay. You can also do the same with a black T-shirt or add a punch of black and white with a handbag.
Dresses – “Dresses made a major comeback. Every designer had a number of dresses in their collection,” says DeJohn. Dresses are easy, convenient and versatile. “They take you from day to evening,” says Bay. She recommends wearing a favorite dress with a motorcycle jacket and boots for day, and chandelier earrings and heels for evening. She cautions that the most important thing with dresses is fit. And if you have an old dress with a great pattern or color, just add a motorcycle jacket to give it new life.
Hats and scarves – According to DeJohn, hats are also making a comeback. He says they are an easy and practical update to any outfit, with a variety to suit all face shapes. Bay says scarves are another trend in fall accessories. For daytime, she recommends wearing a long woven scarf wrapped around multiple times, and for evening add a beaded scarf to a black dress.