How to Transition Your Summer Favorites into Fall

By Kerri Winick,

Gwen Stefani rocks shorts and can, too! (PR Photos)

The thought of filling my closet with cozy fall clothes sends a shiver up my spine. (And probably my husband's, but only out of fear that I'll max out the credit card!)

Here's the thing: I'm not ready to pack away my summer clothes just yet.

The good news? With a few style tricks up your (long) sleeve, Fashion Stylist Colin T. McDonald says warm weather favorites can easily pull double duty.

Shorts: Classic patterns and neutral or darker color work best. Slip your favorite pair over opaque tights, patterned tights, or leggings for a crisp, fall look. Layer a silky blouse and blazer for added style and warmth.

Related: 6 Stylish Ways to Rock a Leather Jacket

Brightly Colored Pants: Colorblocking is still front and center, so think about pairing your summer brights with neutrals like black, tan, or navy. Turn up the volume with a forest green or trendy oxblood sweater and a fur vest.

Maxi Skirts/Dresses: Flowy favorites flow right into fall with a blazer, cardigan, or denim jacket, and floral patterns look fabulous with leather. For something unexpected, turn that dress into a "skirt" with a light sweater or button-down shirt/scarf combo. Throw on a leopard belt for some texture.

Sleeveless Blouses: The possibilities are endless: drapey cardigans, blazers, and motorcycle jackets rule, and a tailored suit is office-appropriate. If you're wearing a shell, try kicking things up a notch with a collar necklace. And for a totally trendy look, go for a cover-up that's brocade, metallic, or sequin.

White Jeans: Throw your fashion rules out the window! Pure white looks right with a navy sweater, printed scarf, faux-fur vest, leather jacket, or knee-high riding boots. For a crisp, head-to-toe look, try a white top on for size, and never underestimate the power of a classic black/white combo. If you're uncomfortable with stark summer whites, stick with cream or winter white.

Related: InJEANious Denim Trends For Fall

Peplum Tops: Peplum isn't one and done! Pair your favorite peplum top with heavier fall trousers, fitted skinny jeans, or knee-length skirts. Swap out strappy sandals for closed-toe pumps or peep-toes.

A few more things to keep in mind:

  • Wide leg jeans look casual cool with fitted, plaid button downs.

  • Light, leather handbags are striking when paired with rich, dark hues.

  • One-piece jumpsuits survive another season with a solid-colored cardi or blazer.

  • The bra-top trend that we saw over the spring and summer doesn't make the cut. You can also store linen, neoprene, and terry cloth pieces.

  • Get creative! Nine out of ten times you can extend the life of a summer staple with some simple layering.

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