As a personal stylist for women, sometimes I have clients who want to save their "good stuff" for special occasions. Think of this as your good china staying in the cupboard until Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner.
That approach works for family heirlooms such as china, but how likely is it that you're going to save several of your work appropriate pieces for your daughter 20 years from now? I'm guessing not super likely.
However, it is, of course, important to take care of your nicer pieces and running around in the mud and rain is probably not your first choice for when to pull them out. And, when playing with the kids at the pumpkin patch or out trick-or-treating, it's vital that you are ready to run, jump or ride in the car. Translation: Comfort trumps all.
But, I assure you that you can still look stylish when celebrating autumn outdoors. Here's how.
Your Outfit for Autumn Outings. Go!
1. The affordable and classic tunic or shirt dress.
I got mine at H&M a number of years ago. It happens to be orange, so that's a nice bonus. But, totally unnecessary. Look for something that is not clingy, ideally in cotton jersey or a knit. Flannel works well, too. If you have an hourglass shaped body, you can rock a more form fitting jersey dress (as long as it is still comfortable). Feel free to belt a shirt dress to create curves on a rectangle shaped frame. Or, simply opt for an oversized option for triangles or diamonds.
You want a top that hits below your hips. It is long enough to be worn with leggings or over jeans. You can move in it, it offers flexibility for any weight fluctuation throughout the holiday season AND it's affordable enough that if it is destroyed, you won't be bothered.
2. Hip Leggings or jeans.
Depending on your personal style either leggings or jeans work well. I tend to let me footwear guide me between the two. If I'm going to wear knee high rain boots, leggings win. After all, they are much more comfortable tucked into high boots. If I'm opting for ankle boots, then I'll wear jeans rolled up. Again, you can move and your look is both effortless and chic. Full disclosure: I’m not a huge fan of leggings. In fact, outside of the pumpkin patch, I recommend steering clear of them unless there is something stellar about them- like vegan leather, for instance.
3. Rainboots, functional ankle boots or even your (gasp) Danksos.
You guessed it. Footwear is everything in this situation. I prefer knee high rain boots when I'll be tromping through mud. This is also an ideal option if it's raining on Halloween night but you are determined to do at least some trick-or-treating around the neighborhood. As for ankle boots, I opt for Dr. Martens. Functional, comfortable, easy to clean and still hip. But, rubber ankle boots or other super functional outdoorsy shoes can work. Danksos are even an option if you can truly walk in them in the mud. The main thing to keep in mind is that you are elevating your look with a tunic, so a really unattractive comfort shoe just isn't going to cut it. Keep it simple. Nothing with tons of bells and whistles.
4. A functional coat.
This is when you actually can wear your North Face parka and I'll salute you. Ideally, you are rocking a coat or jacket that is the same length as your tunic.
5. Winter accessories.
Depending on the weather, you may choose to rock a scarf, gloves and/or a hat. Accessories elevate any look, so be thoughtful when putting something together. A circle scarf is a nice default and can also be used as a warm blanket for a kid in the car after he/she changes into fresh clean clothes post- muddy adventure.
Off you go! Make me proud.
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