Autumn Exposed


From Where magazine

Fall fashion runways bring some surprises this year. Designers focus on the professional woman, offering covered-up, buttoned-up looks, with plenty of femininity shining through. Layers of cozy fabrics replace the skin-baring fashions of the past. Bright color is mostly absent, while stormy tones dominate. And the decade we thought was truly history has returned: Yes, the ’80s are back.

This fall fill your closet with chunky sweaters and cardigans. While oversized looks are in vogue, this doesn’t mean you’ll look sloppy. Instead, wearing these pieces over flimsy, light skirts bring contrast to your outfit. Sweater dresses also make a comeback this season, belted for a more tailored look or left loose for comfort. Sweater coats and big, chunky scarves prepare you for the winter chill that’s around the corner. If you’re ready for a trip back in time, you can wear these slouchy tops over leggings. That’s right; leggings aren’t just for the gym or the garden anymore. Keep warm by wearing them under skirts or belted sweater dresses, or if you’re brave enough to show off your assets, pair leggings with a hip-length blazer. Worn with flats, slingbacks or kitten heels, leggings may just be a pleasant, comfortable surprise this season.

While leggings have returned, the wide-legged trouser, a favorite of the past few years, is still fashionable. Wear these with form-fitting tops or ribbed turtlenecks. Also, skirts of all styles are back this fall: pencil, tulip, full and puffball. That natural waist reappears this season, highlighting a woman’s true shape. Use wide leather belts, obi sashes, ribbon ties or bow belts to cinch clothes just below the ribcage, keeping skirts full and tops blousy.

With muted tones like black, gray, camel, taupe, deep brown, navy and mahogany being the staples, your closet won’t have much snap to it. But the color comes with your accessories, or one or two signature items (i.e. a teal evening dress). Use purses, belts, shoes or jewelry to add a pop of red, turquoise, purple or magenta to your neutral ensemble. Luxurious are the fabrics, with cashmere, mohair, corduroy, velvet and wool keeping you warm, while metallic—gold, silver or copper—and glittery fabrics add an extra bit of pizzazz. And believe it or not, plaid of all sizes—from small, checkered patterns to lumberjackesque—works its way back into your wardrobe. Not only can you find it on skirts and blazers, but also on casual jumpers and satin ball gowns.

Designers didn’t forget about your feet. Tall, knee-high boots are in, as always, with added embellishmentsTwo male models in casual fall clothing. like embroidery or buckles. But the boot also shrinks to the ankle this fall. Shoe boots with high, high heels, and zippers or laces, are accented with leather, lace, suede or bangles. Wear these with either leggings or trousers, but also with skirts and bright colored, opaque tights. This covered-up look makes its way to your tresses as well; hats of all shapes—big and floppy to beret-style—can be matched with any day or evening look.

While looks for the businesswoman prevail, men needn’t feel left out. You’ll also be sporting layers of chunky cardigans and pea coats in the same muted fall tones. Mix and match textures and patterns, like cable knit with corduroy or fairisle with plaid. If you’re heading to work, slip into a pair of slim-fit trousers, with a cashmere sweater under a sport coat, and then pair that blazer with jeans for a night on the town.

When it comes to fall fashion, the Twin Cities have you covered from head to toe. If budget is no object, Nordstrom at the Mall of America or Neiman Marcus on Nicollet Mall carry the highest fashion. Check out one of the many new Macy’s stores in the area for the latest looks and signature designs, or save a pretty penny at homegrown Target or Saks “Off Fifth,” both on Nicollet Mall, or H & M at the Mall, where designer duds are priced just right. W