So let’s just get real here. We live in California. Near the beach. That is absolutely a GLORIOUS thing…until September/October when we all start longing for fall. We drink our pumpkin spice lattes while wearing tank tops. Sweat while we pick pumpkins at the pumpkin patch. And worry that our kids might be TOO bundled up in their Halloween costumes, because what if it’s 90 degrees that day?? And while most of our Instagram and Facebook feeds are covered in photos of boots and scarves and mittens, we are still trying to figure out if it’s cool enough to wear a lightweight sweater or even just a vest.
All this being said…obviously it’s great to live in a place with such nice weather! We wanted to do a post all about how to layer for fall HERE. And we also know how important it is to re-use and re-purpose all those fun spring and summer items you’ve got in your closet. So we thought we would come up with some looks using items and outfits you probably have been wearing…and add on some layers for our typical Central Coast cool weather. Because fur coats? Rarely gonna happen here.
Look #1: Graphic Sundress to Layered Tunic Dress
Okay so the beauty of each of these looks is that you can add on these colder weather pieces as the weather gets cooler. This is a great way to re-use all those graphic or even solid sundresses you’ve got. We first put on skinny jeans (you can use leggings too) under the dress and then put on a loose fit sweater over the top. Loose fit sweaters are magic for layering, so if you haven’t got one yet, go get at least one in a neutral color like black or grey. It will go over SO many things…you’ll be surprised at how layerable all your clothes suddenly become! Then we swapped out the wedges for tall boots and added a different patterned scarf. This is a great way to try pattern mixing too if you’re a bit shy about it. Since there’s a solid sweater between the scarf and the dress, it keeps the pattern mixing more mellow and give a little bit of a buffer between the two.
Look #2: Tank and Mini to Cozy Flannel
This is a fun look. Take all those mini OR midi OR maxi skirts you’ve got (you can use your preferred length and the look will still work gloriously!) and that tank you’ve been wearing with it…since it’s been so hot lately. This is one of those layered looks perfect for when it starts to cool down, but it’s not actually COLD cold yet. Add on a flannel (flannels make EXCELLENT cool weather jacket substitutions because they’re not as thick or warm as a jacket but they will keep you nice and cozy still) and a large scarf…keep your booties OR add on tights/leggings and tall boots…and you’ve got yourself an outfit! Another good pattern mixing tip: florals and plaids typically work REALLY well together as long as the colors compliment each other. So a flannel over a floral top or dress? Perfect pattern mixing. You’ll instantly look like a pro.
Look #3: Denim Sundress to Sweater Weather Fab
Another piece that you will definitely want to have in your closet for the California winter is an open sweater. These draped front sweaters are so flattering (they tend to be nice and tummy hiding FYI!) and they are easy to add on to summer pieces to warm them up a bit. Denim is HUGE right now and one of the more unpredictable ways you can wear it for fall is by taking a denim dress and adding on a sweater and a large scarf like this embroidered pashmina we have here. Booties again work for both warm and cool weather…and again, adding leggings or tights under would work too if you think you’ll be too cold with bare legs.
Look #4: Floral Sundress to Boho Fall Chic
Okay floral sundresses…we’ve all got at least one right? Whether it’s a mini, a maxi, sleeved, or sleeveless…the floral sundress and boots is one of the greatest summer outfits of all time. Are florals appropriate for fall and winter? You betcha they are! Just take that simple outfit and warm it up a little…and you’ve got a winner for fall too. Adding leg warmers or tall thick boot socks is a fun way to not only add warmth to your boots, but also to add height…you can create an over-the-knee effect with your boots by using the same color boot socks or leg warmers and pulling them over your knees. There’s a great way you can wear the over-the-knee trend without forking over hundreds of dollars for a new pair of boots! Again, we added a great loose fitting sweater over the top of the dress, taking it from summer to fall. The floppy hat is one of those key pieces that when added to any outfit, instantly makes you look all Parisian boho chic. And we all like that feeling right?!
Those of us who are used to the Central Coast type fall know that when it starts to cool down, the weather starts ping ponging back and forth between cool and warm…thereby driving all of us outfit planners crazy. So the beauty of these looks is that they are the kind of outfits that you can add the layers or subtract them if you, well, didn’t listen to your local weather man that morning. Now I know you’ve got the summer pieces in your closet. But I’m gonna recap some key pieces you will want to check off your list in order to ensure a perfectly layered autumn!
- Loose fitting sweater in a neutral color OR in a color that will easily coordinate with many of your pieces.
- Draped open front sweater…in any color.
- Boot socks or leg warmers.
- Skinny jeans or leggings to put under your dresses and that will easily tuck into your boots.
- A great flannel.
Ahhhh…nothing better than a pumpkin spice latte on a 95 degree day is there? Happy Fall, Central Coasters! Come on in if you need some layering advice! We’ll getcha all set up for the slightly cooler weather to come…and the even colder weather to follow. We know the drill and we love to help you!
Happy shopping! (and layering)