Here’s my advice about fashion trends: Take them with a grain of salt. I’m a fashion editor who is also a wardrobe consultant and personal shopper for women over 50. Each fall as the “trends” roll out, clients ask: “Are they kidding?!” Designers and retailers live in the fantasy world of fashion where silk slip dresses, power-shoulder suits and sleeveless winter sweaters reside, while grownup women live in the real world of everyday clothes. Except for a few fashionistas, most of us just want a few new items that’ll wake up our style taste buds without offending our bodies or common sense. Here are six practical trends you won’t return or regret.
1. A red sweater or jacket
Though quiet neutrals like cream, brown, gray and camel are trending (see them below!), so are outspoken reds (as per runways at Prada, Yves Saint Laurent and Tory Burch). Though a black blazer is essential, a vibrant orange-y tomato, cool cherry or fire-engine scarlet jacket or sweater — like the Mango Pocket Tweed Jacket in Red ($130, mango.com/us), & Other Stories Wrap Sweater in Ruby Red ($69, stories.com/en_usd) and J.Crew Emilie Patch-Pocket Sweater Lady Jacket in Stripe in Red Moroccan Sand ($138, jcrew.com) — will really stir up your closet regulars. It won’t feel outdated next year, it will brighten your looks and mood when you’re feeling drab or fatigued, and it will also solve any what-to-wear holiday dilemmas.
2. Wider-leg pants and jeans
Skinny jeans and leggings have not died, but they have been pushed aside by pants and jeans with wider legs. No need to opt for extreme styles with lots of excess fabric or the déjà vu look of wide-leg “dress pants” that puddle on the floor. Those into casual clothes, die-hard legging fans and anyone skeptical of wide legs will get enough of an update from flat-front, pull-on styles with a modified width, like the Chico’s Pull-On Wide Leg Ankle Jeans ($99, chicos.com) or a flare like the Banana Republic Stretch-Ponte Crop Flare Pant in Black ($100, bananarepublic.gap.com). Jeans fans who want a stylish alternative to straight legs can try flares — like the Lauren Ralph Lauren High-Rise Flare Jeans in City Blue Wash ($165, macys.com) that flow from the knee, or elevated hybrids like the NYDJ Mona Wide Leg Trouser Jeans in Lightweight Rinse ($119, nydj.com) — for extra swagger that’s sensible, not silly. Hint: If you must wear heels to make the extra width and/or length work, they’re the wrong pants or jeans for you!