There is something hearty about Autumn. It makes me feel nostalgic. As the nights draw in, I want to snuggle up and surround myself with comforting things.
The changing colour of the leaves hypnotising us as they sway from side to side on their journey to the ground. The saying goes if you catch one it’s good luck.
The rustle under foot makes a real noticeable change in the season. It’s like when we move from the winter to spring, there seems to be real change, it’s obvious and we adapt.
Rich, warm colours such as rusty orange, earthy brown and moss green are merged with the temperature and mood change.
Soon to be hibernating humans, we venture out for a few hours to explore on a bright day, before we head home to hunker down and cosy up with some wholesome food and a cracklin’ log fire.
There’s a need for genuine and meaningful dressing. An urge to feel supported and satisfied by our outfit choices. Simple, considered and practical pieces that offer reassurance, comfort and contentment for the upcoming months.
The weather has an effect on the way we dress. Don’t we all say, what’s the weather like today? I certainly consider it when I am dressing.
Autumn dressing is a step from summer into winter. I see it as a chance for us to reset our outfit choices and move into the latter months of the year with ease. First come the longer sleeve items, then the knits, and then the coats.
We spend more time inside, as this is where we feel safe from the elements. I believe we want familiarity with what we wear. There are more moving parts to consider and this can make dressing a little bit harder.
Layering up and keeping warm can make us feel bigger. Maintaining our feeling of femininity in the winter months can be more difficult, so we need to be clever with how we do this. I am often asked about knitwear, an item that can challenge a lot of people.
There are many shapes to choose from. You need to try and see what you look and feel better in. You can go with a fine or chunky gauge. Choose the gauge and yarn that works best for you.
To approach your Autumn capsule wardrobe with confidence and style, you want adaptable pieces that you understand and that understand you. If you start here your wardrobe will offer you:
A Timeless appeal
Movement and freedom, layering up for warmth can get restrictive
Quality investment items that will withstand the test of time
Clothes that you will feel optimistic in
I think that the Autumn Winter months seem to last longer. I think we need more of an outfit plan, and having had a handful of months wearing your summer capsule wardrobe pieces you want to step into Autumn feeling reassured that you have a wardrobe that supports you.
As a Personal Fashion Stylist, most of the clients I work with find it harder to transition to Autumn than they do to Spring. We do need specific seasonal pieces but we can make some of our wardrobe pieces work all year round.
It is possible to wear one of your favourite summer dresses in Autumn. You can learn how to add mid-layers, a cardigan or a blazer over your dress, or a long sleeve t-shirt or shirt underneath it.
Here are my suggested key Autumn items for you to consider. They will bring you pleasure and boost your mood each time you wear them.
Leave a little room for a knit or sweatshirt underneath so you can layer on the colder Autumn days. You can keep this traditional or choose one that has a ‘twist’ and will always work for you and your style. You can find some great vintage ones.
AN OVERSIZED LOUNGE CARDIGAN
They offer space, warmth and comfort. It’s an easy piece you are able to reach for and rely on, indoors or outdoors. Add a belt for interest, a brooch or a scarf for some decoration.
A GOOD JUMPER
A V neck or round neck that you can wear on its own, over a shirt or a t-shirt - neutrals work well with everything. A cotton one is nice to wear against your skin as is a considered cashmere piece. Cashmere is made of natural properties so it will keep you cool in the summer, well worth the investment.
THE ROLL NECK
Very much a perennial piece. Find one that works for you. It could be fitted or boxy, jersey or knit there is a roll-neck to suit everyone. The neck can be much looser and made into a real feature.
A jumper dress is such a good go to piece, add your knee boots and trench and you have an easy go-to outfit that you can always rely on. Jumper dresses don't have to be fitted you can choose a more oversized shape for a more directional look
AN 'I CAN GO ANYWHERE IN THIS DRESS'
It might be a floral, a check, or a plain colour. A dress that you can under or over layer and that you can wear with boots, trainers, brogues or a Mary-Jane sandal.
A mid pleated skirt in a plain or a print. Great to wear with a knit, a cardigan or a shirt that you can tuck in or layer over.
A versatile piece that will never let you down. Plain, pinstripe or tweed, fitted, or an oversized 'mensy' one. Something that you can layer over a dress, pleated skirts, leggings, trousers or jeans. A blazer will instantly elevate a more comfort-led outfit. You can find some great vintage and second-hand ones all helping in our circular fashion economy journey.
Sweatshirt and joggers anyone? There was a move towards the looser waistband and a relaxed look before we had even heard the word lockdown. These can also be dressed up with necklaces and some fancier shoes, or kept minimal for you to just lounge in.
GOOD JERSEY BASICS
A few t-shirts to wear under your knits or sweatshirt, good quality ones will keep their shapes [the seams won't twist after washing] and they can be dyed if the colour fades on your trusty black and navy.
A good pair of jeans, find your fit and your wash and wear them. Our bodies change so wear what you buy and feel good in them. If a shape is good for you buy in a couple of washes. There are some great vintage finds and they are available in all shapes and sizes!
A smart shirt worn easy or dressed up. There are so many shapes to choose from and so many ways they can we worn. The half tuck, belted, collars up, unbuttoned as the neck and hem. The opportunities are endless.
A smarter trouser that you can wear with a shirt, a roll neck or a prettier floral blouse. Find a leg shape that works for you.
A good piece of leather. Your choice, what works for you? A dress, a skirt, a jacket. A piece that doesn’t date.
YOUR EVERYDAY BOOT
A chunky ankle boot that you can dress up with a floral dress. A knee boot that adds a smarter element. Don’t be afraid to wear them again and again.
A lightweight puffer for when you pop out for your coffee or walking the dog, an easy piece to keep by the door that you can throw on
A single-breasted or double-breasted coat. An easy navy or camel colour will be there for you to smarten up your casual outfit or sit alongside and compliment a smart one.
I think Autumn dressing has a back-to-nature feeling about it, a real sense of authenticity. Perhaps it’s the warm colours and luxurious fabrics we surround ourselves with.
Enjoy stepping into Autumn your way and feel good doing it!