Sunday, September 11, 2011

Basics to Jumpstart Your Fall Wardrobe

{by Rachel Coker}

Ah, fall. That time of year when the days are best spent sipping hot apple cider, crunching over newly fallen leaves, cracking the spines of unread books, and… shopping! (Any sentence that ends with the word “shopping” is sure to make females all over the world rejoice)

I think I speak for a large group of young women when I admit that the change in seasons can make me go a little crazy with my hard earned money. There are so many new types of coats and boots and gloves sitting on those store shelves looking all pretty and autumnal, begging me to take them home. I find myself breaking the dressing room limit of “six items per person” only to end up biting my nails in despair because I can’t decide which I need more: a new pair of fuchsia gloves or a green striped scarf?

This is where a little word called “basics” starts running through my mind. 
It helps if I sit with my head between my knees and chant to myself, “basics, basics, basics”. Then I get up, put back the fuchsia gloves, and get the black tights that will go with everything in my wardrobe instead.

The great thing about basics is (obviously) how totally basic they are! No matter what your personal style or budget, these are the pieces that will get you through fall without breaking the bank or having a meltdown in a badly-lit dressing room.
brown leather boots [glamorous]
     Brown leather boots
-     Okay, so this is number one on my list of things to buy this winter. And I’m finding that it is actually a lot harder than I thought it would be! The trick here is to buy a pair of boots that you know will go with the majority of pieces in your wardrobe. Ankle or knee high, flat or heeled—it all depends on what you will wear the most. For me personally, the search is on for the perfect pair of slightly worn in riding boots for my lacy skirts and blue jeans. This is why God invented Ebay, obviously. 

  A peacoat
-    Too many women underestimate the power of a lovely peacoat. Universally flattering for women, men, and children of all body types and style preferences, this is truly the perfect coat. If you’re interested in looking classic and timeless, go for a navy or black. If you want to make a splash, why not hot pink or yellow?

  well-fitting pair of jeans or jean skirt
-     Whether you tend to wear pants or skirts, having something in denim is basically a no-brainer. If it’s figure flattering, you will wear it almost every day. The style is really up to you. I personally prefer the 70’s inspired, wide leg jeans and denim pencil skirts, but others look better in classic or straight styles. It’s really up to you. Denim is pretty timeless anyway.

[miss pandora]
    A fun coat
-     Okay, so you have your pea coat. Now you need a really fun coat to add some spice! Maybe an orange trench coat or a faux-fur swing coat or something velvety. Throwing on a pretty coat or jacket can brighten up a dreary day and add spice to the most basic of outfits.

     Cardigan sweater
-     I definitely consider this a basic. Easily found on sales racks just about anywhere, these are staples. You will wear them. Over sundresses, with jeans, on chilly days… You will probably be embarrassed by how often you wear them. I know I am.
Ballet flats
-     Ah, the epitome of French style. Perfect paired with tights and the daintiest skirt on chilly autumn days. Truly a heaven-sent for womankind. Who can run around in heels all day, anyway?
       Tights in brown and black
-    This is my go to when I almost buy fuchsia gloves. This is what I always need to get instead. This is what I know I can buy, and wear every day, and end up having to replace once a month. They go with everything from September to February. By March I just decide to have fun, buy fuchsia tights, and wear them every day instead.


Well, I hope this list helped all the other young women like me escape the dangers of prettily packaged and overpriced store merchandise. Although, who knows? I may buy those gloves afterall…

Is there anything you find yourself wearing time after time again in the chilly autumn months? What are your fall fashion essentials?

Rachel is a homeschool student who resides in Virginia with her parents and two sisters. She has a passion for great books, and has been surrounded by them all her life. As a young child, Rachel helped her parents in a family-run Christian book business and hasn’t stopped reading since. Her gift for writing became apparent at the age of eleven, at which time her parents signed her up for a year of lessons with a professional writing coach. She was signed with Zondervan in 2010 for her first YA fiction novel, Interrupted, coming out in February 2012. When she is not writing, playing the piano, or hiding behind a camera, Rachel enjoys spending time with her family and friends and serving her Lord and Savior. You can visit her at her blog.


  1. sounds like a serious case of "fuschia fetish"....might need professional intervention!!!

    Or, better them, wear them and be offended when everyone copies your style!

  2. Yeah, for some reason I have a thing for fuschia. :) I wonder if they have therapy for that type of thing, lol.

  3. Rachel, I was totally psyched when I saw the title of this post becauase this is exactly where I need help! So thanks for outlining some basics that are worth spending my hard earned babysitting money on. =D

    I also am looking for a pair of boots pretty much like you described. Have you found any reasonably priced options? Where should I shop?

    ~ Rachel too =)

  4. Rachel,
    Thanks for your enthusiasm! As far as the boots go, I have a pair I'm watching right now on Ebay by Anthropologie. I'm a big fan of finding unique, better quality clothing online, and then looking for it on Ebay for a fraction of the price! But yeah, Anthropologie, Frye, and Franco Sarto are my favorite brands for boots. But definitely buy them off Ebay or some other lower than retail site.
    Hope this helps! :)

  5. Cool Imma check those out! I don't really do the whole Ebay thing much , but it sounds like I probably should try it =) Thanks for the advice, Rachel, and happy boot-hunting!! =)

    ~ Rachel