Tips to Create a Versatile, Stylish Fall Wardrobe

With a change of seasons, women in particular are compelled to take stock of their closets, put away summer clothing and pull out the heavier layers.  Changes in lifestyle, weight fluctuations, and style trends all influence the pieces we keep, discard, or donate.  But what are the fall wardrobe items that women over 50 should be wearing that will be flattering, stylish, and timeless?

According to a recent AARP article, the key to building a versatile wardrobe is to focus on neutrals – either cool or warm, that will provide more mix-and-match options.  Black, grays and navy are in the cool group of neutrals while beige, brown, tan and olive are warmer colours that can mix well together.  Of course, blue jeans can mix with both cool and warm – the ultimate neutral piece. 

Solids are the staple of a capsule wardrobe, but mixing in a few pieces with small prints can add visual interest and a sense of individuality.  A little leopard print can go a long way!  Picking a few signature pieces that you love to wear and are versatile, such as a well-fitted black blazer or a dark wash straight-leg jean, and can be dressed up or down, depending on the accessories.  A single “column of colour” outfit is instantly elongating and elegant and never fails to make a sophisticated impression.  Keeping proportions balanced can make a big difference in how an outfit looks – if you are heavier on top, wear a darker colour with lighter bottoms to even things out visually. 

Dressing for your real life is important, and taking the time to try things on in a store or at a trunk show can help prevent endless returns.  Try shopping in your own closet first for staples you may have forgotten you already have. Longer denim skirts seem to be making a comeback this season, and if you dig, you may find one from the 80s.  Comfort is key – you won’t wear pieces you don’t feel at ease in, no matter how much you paid for those stilettos!  

Reading the care label on clothing is also fundamental as dry-cleaning can be costly, and with so many fewer cleaners in business, may be difficult to find. Ironing and steaming clothing may also be a chore better left in the past.   If a piece hasn’t been worn in over a year, no longer fits your lifestyle or personal style, is damaged, or hasn’t fit in over a year, it’s probably time to donate or discard.  Getting your fall wardrobe organized should be a fun process – try attacking it in a few sessions to avoid getting overwhelmed.   Happy Purging!