Summer isn’t quite over yet, but we’re already looking ahead to the season of cozy cashmere, plaid skirts, and pumpkin spice everything. Last fall we were more than happy to wrap ourselves in sweatpants and fancy PJs while working from home, but this year we’re eager to put together outfits that are a bit more fashion-forward as we slowly start incorporating more restaurant visits, office days, and hangouts with friends into our schedule.
90s fashion has been enjoying a return to the spotlight for a few years now, but this fall we expect the trend to go even further with folks rocking the decade’s staple looks from head to toe, rather than using them as accent pieces. Pair your new favorite baguette bags with sheath dresses, tall square-toe boots, and maxi-length cardigans. Or wear a cropped cardigan set over a miniskirt and sneakers with ankle socks. Layer white T-shirts and grungy boots under silk slip dresses, pull a plaid shacket on over skater jeans, and try some cute overalls with a polo tee. When in doubt just channel Rachel Green and you’ll be good to go.
Typically the transition from summer to fall means swapping out pretty pastels and tropical brights for shades of navy, khaki green, burgundy, and other moody hues. But this year vibrant shades still reign supreme, albeit with an autumnal twist. Think boosted jewel tones, deep magenta, mustard yellow, and other rich options. The best way to rock this trend is by mixing and matching unexpected combinations, like peachy orange and bright blue or bubblegum pink and marigold, to form a look that’s both wonderfully colorful and seasonally appropriate.
Skinny jeans will always hold a special place in our hearts, but for fall 2021, looser styles like mom jeans, flares, bootcut, and boyfriend jeans are the way to go. Mom jeans and loose straight-leg cuts in particular are the most popular silhouettes, as are cross-front waists for an added fun detail. To balance out extra fabric on the bottom we suggest wearing a slim-fit tee and tailored blazer, cropped sweater, or elegant blouse tucked in.
This Doug Funnie-approved trend first popped up in 2020, but it is still going strong in Fall 2021. The most popular styles are those with some texture and detailing, rather than plain monochrome cashmere, and a bit of an oversize fit. While the weather’s still warm, try wearing one with nothing underneath (except a bra, if you like) with some loose-fit jeans. As temperatures continue to drop, you can layer your vests over shirtdresses, button-downs, turtlenecks, and even another sweater.
This summer we saw wrap-around strings on bare midriffs in the form of crop tops and midi dresses. This fall the trend is taking a simpler turn with hints of skin peeking out between coordinating tops and midi or maxi skirts. You can go bold or keep it subtle with a sliver that’s really only visible while you’re on the move.
Jeans and trousers in snake prints, checkerboard, zebra stripes and punchy florals are popping up left and right. Unlike floaty wide-leg styles you might wear in the summer, these iterations feature much heavier, more structured fabrics like denim, corduroy or wool and have a more tailored fit. Have fun pairing them with other vibrant prints or go simple and let them steal the show under a plain black, white, or gray sweater.
PUFFY, QUILTED, AND TEXTURED HANDBAGS
Think cross bodies that resemble puffer coats, intricately woven leather clutches, and ruching galore. Some bags might even combine all three. Perhaps our favorite thing about this trend, is that you can essentially pick and choose any style you like—a large tote that fits your laptop, a mid-size crossbody for weekend errands, or a mini that fits just the essentials for a night out. The chicest styles are monochrome leather, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still rock a puffed-up nylon clutch or a ruched zebra-print shoulder bag.
While most of the shades you’ll see this fall are much more saturated and rich, you’re also likely to see a ton of pale lilac and lavender. The pretty hue popped up on runways in every city during fashion month, including Lacoste, Salvatore Ferragamo, Jonathan Simkhai, and Roksanda. and in a wide variety of styles too. Pick up one or two statement pieces, like a lavender blazer, wide-leg trousers, or a floaty midi dress, then mix and match them with other shades of purple or classic basics, like jeans and a T-shirt.
PLATFORMS AND FLATFORMS
Flatform espadrilles and ‘90s-inspired sandals were one of the top shoe trends this summer, and the elevated styles will definitely carry over into fall and winter. Platform loafers and lace-up boots, as well as clogs and ‘70s-esque heels, will give you a chic lift that’s also much easier to walk in than stilettos (thank god).
SEQUINS AND SPARKLES FOR DAY
We haven’t been out and about in over a year and now we plan to live it up—or such is the thought behind “revenge dressing.” Folks are pulling out the most fun, fabulous pieces from their wardrobes, including NYE-ready sequins and other shiny metallics, and wearing them anywhere they please, from coffee dates to brunch to a quick jaunt to the grocery store. The best way to make these statement materials work is by pairing them with super casual basics, like a white button-down, raw-hem denim, or an easy T-shirt.
Think The Heathers with a punk twist, or Harry Potter but for chic adults instead of angsty teens. This moody trend started with Gen Z on TikTok, but really it works for just about any age or style. Stand-out pieces include pleated mini and midi skirts in dark hues, tailored leather blazers and jackets, and preppy plaids in deep shades of green, navy, burgundy, brown, and black.