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Work fall’s big fashion trends into your wardrobe

By Jennifer Barger
Washington Post
  • http://media.charlotteobserver.com/smedia/2013/10/23/10/51/Vy2PB.Em.138.jpeg|420
    piperlime.gap.com - PIPERLIME.GAP.COM
    Leather and leather hybrids: Tabitha Stripe Dress by Ella Moss, $198.
  • http://media.charlotteobserver.com/smedia/2013/10/23/10/51/mHmvm.Em.138.jpeg|395
    COLDWATERCREEK.COM<252,1> -
    Oversize coats: Coldwater Creek Patchwork Stadium coat, $249.95-259.95.
  • http://media.charlotteobserver.com/smedia/2013/10/23/10/51/EwvAO.Em.138.jpeg|431
    oldnavy.gap.com - OLDNAVY.GAP.COM
    Bold patterns: zip-front cardigan in houndstooth, $39.94, from Old Navy.
  • http://media.charlotteobserver.com/smedia/2013/10/23/10/51/gq1hI.Em.138.jpeg|474
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As the weather cools, you’ll notice trendy oversize coats, gray hues, cobalt accents, chunky sweaters and leather everything.

Monochromatic neutrals

“The key to doing gray without looking dour is to layer in different tones ... inky, steely, pale. And a pop of color,” such as yellow or purple, said Jennifer Barger, fashion editor for Fashion Washington and Express, “can spark things up.”

Lauren Rothman of Styleauteur.com and author of “Style Bible,” says gray hues are an extension of a trend of menswear for woman: “The new suit is the coordinated skirt set, the skirt with the matching sweater or jacket. It’s not necessarily a suit but head to toe is a monochromatic color.”

Greens and emeralds

In addition to the sweater-and-skirt “new suit” trend, another big trend for fall is shades of greens and emeralds. Rothman suggests jacquard pants and jackets for a take on the classic menswear look.

Houndstooth

If a houndstooth coat, such as the bold patterns from Michael Kors’ fall 2013 collection, seems overwhelming, Rothman suggests a houndstooth accessory such as a purse or large scarf.

Oversized coats

Not everyone can wear such a large garment, Rothman says. “That oversized coat that was very cocoonlike (and) doesn’t play so well in everyday life,” she says. “I’d really rather go with a statement coat that will turn heads, whether that has a really big collar, it’s belted, or maybe you choose to go loud with a great pattern, maybe a plaid color blocking or leather details.”

Chunky sweaters

Paige Speyer of Wink boutique in Washington says she has been stocking a lot of chunky sweaters, including varieties by Tibi. Speyer also loves Mara Hoffman sweaters, including a leopard-print pullover. Barger recommends pairing a big cardigan or pullover over breezy dresses or straight pants.

“Chunky knits look fresh layered with lighter florals,” Barger says. Or try a graphic print, like the looks from Tibi’s fall 2013 runway.

Cobalt

Cobalt is another fresh color for fall, Rothman says, like the shade seen on dresses from J. Mendel. Rothman says she often urges clients to incorporate trends with accessories instead of entire outfits, such as the cobalt shoes and bags.

Leather hybrids

“Leather is everywhere, but what I am loving is hybrids ... a coat with leather sleeves, a skirt with leather panels,” Barger says. “It tends to be cheaper and a bit less biker chick.”

Adds Rothman: “I think it is one of the ‘it’ accessories. It’s very luxurious, and quilting especially is very luxurious. It gives that nod to Chanel.”

“We’re getting a lot of leather, a lot of coated denim, leather-ette,” says Speyer. “Leather tops, leather accents, in details on sweaters, skirts, leather trim on dresses – it’s everywhere.”

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