Fall fashion focuses on fit, jewel tones


It’s that time of the year again – when even North Floridians trade in their shorts and flip flops for boots and jackets. As the temperatures drop and we transition into the fall, here is a list of some of the latest 2008 fashion trends to keep both men and women stylish and warm this season.

Feminine fit

Kick your low-rise styled wardrobe to the curb and instead opt for higher-waisted styles. From jeans to skirts, this fashion season puts a lot of emphasis on the waist, said Ashley Holt, co-owner and manager of J. Ashley boutique.

“In a lot of past seasons it’s been empire-waist,” she said. “Now it’s actually on your waist.”

Holt also said to look out for wide-leg pants and winter florals in blouses and dresses.

“Winter florals won’t have bright spring colors,” she said.  “It’ll just be more deeper, jewel-toned florals for fall.”

A romantic, feminine look is on the rise as well and slowly taking over past years’ babydoll trend, Holt said. Look for tops with ruffles, lace, belts and flower appliques.

As for dresses, match them with a pair of tights and boots, Holt said.

“They can be anything from a knit sweater dress, very plain-fitted,” she said. “You have either a detail on the neck or emphasis on the waist; or just a straight up-and-down dress that you wear that could be right at your knee or a little bit shorter.”

But don’t disregard your wardrobe from last season. Boot-cut jeans, turtlenecks, high heels, peacoats or trench coats, shawls, oversized bags and clutches are big every fall, Holt said.


Plaid is the new trademark pattern this season.  Plaid can be worn on coats, jackets and pants to even skirts and accessories, Holt said.

“It’s always a classic look as a jacket and is always in style in fall,” she said. “It also looks great on a 3/4 sleeved shirt or a short dress that can be worn with a simple cardigan or paired with flats and tights.”


The year’s hottest fashion accessory was the scarf, and it’s certainly not going away, said Crystal Stone, manager for the Rosie True boutique. Match scarves with a simple T-shirt or sweater. Scarves come in every print and color and certainly add panache to one’s wardrobe.

“[Scarves are] the hottest thing I’ve seen since the summer,” she said. “Any kind of scarf is going to make your outfit.”


Spring and summer emphasized bright, neon 80s-inspired colors, but the fall palette takes a more subdued approach. Jewel-toned colors such as amethyst, emerald, turquoise and ruby can be found in – and incorporated into – any outfit including tops, dresses, jewelry and accessories, Holt said.

“I love how they’re bringing back … earth-tone colors,” said junior psychology major Samantha Hubel. “I also like the glitz and glamour look with the sequins.”

Statement pieces

Layered and big-stoned jewelry are all the rage for this fall. Large-cuffed bracelets with gemstones, piled bangles and cocktail rings add balance and structure to the feminine and romantic look. Stone recommended picking one piece that won’t take away or distract a top or skirt.

“You don’t have to do it all at the same time,” Stone said. “Just pick one piece that you love and incorporate it into your outfit.”

Wear these fun jewelry pieces with a plain turtleneck, black top or sweater dress, Holt said.

As a timeless addition to her wardrobe, Hubel loves wearing pearls.

“I love pearls because I think they’re classy,” she said. “You can incorporate them into any outfit by earrings or necklaces. Even a lot of tops have them now as buttons.”


Whether it’s ankle, open-toed, knee- high, suede or leather, boots are the essential apparel to have this season. They go great with a pair of skinny jeans or dress and can be worn either in a casual or formal setting.

“Knee-high boots – even ones that are flat [non-heeled] are big,” Holt said.

Men’s styles

Modern classic is the essential look for men this fall, said Fitz Opie, manager for Rosenblum’s.

Men should look for trimmer, cleaner, 60s-inspired silhouettes in pants or coats, Opie said.

“It’s a little tighter-fitting, very Frank Sinatra, that era of Rat Pack,” he said.

As for shirts, the untucked look is over. Look for shirts with a lot of detail and intricate fabrics. Denim is darker and no longer low-cut and tight from last season, Opie said.

“I would expect [men’s] clothing going forward,” Opie said. “Probably a little bit more basic and plain, kind of classic and that the fashion would come out of the fit and the details rather than loud, bright colors.”

Instead of buying several pieces of clothing, buy one piece that lasts, is of good quality and you feel good about wearing, Opie said.

And as for every fashion season, the key to achieving the “it” look is to not overdo or over-wear the latest trends, Holt said.

“Buy the trends that you love personally,” she said. “Don’t wear the trend just because it’s a trend. Pick trends that look good on you for the season.”

Compiled by Laura Franco.