When the palette changes from bright summer hues to autumn neutrals, texture and print come into play to keep your wardrobe interesting.

Many years ago, we encountered a fall/winter season in which everything (and I mean everything) was grey.  Clean, smooth fabrics were used with very little texture and if there was texture it was heavy wool tweed.  I will never forget how depressing it was to the customers.  Stylish at the time – yes, but inviting – no.

When we are buying for the fall season we are fortunate that it is still winter (January, February). We are in the thick of the reality that darker colours, tunics, and chunky knits are where we land after the brisk and sunny days of fall disappear.  When all traces of sun bronzed skin are gone, comfort and warmth really matter.  Colours that look flattering in the summer are often a bit more draining in the winter.  Despite the temptation to always be bright, we tend to play it down somewhat by the time the snow starts to fall. Transitioning from fall to winter then, means a more neutral palette.

While there will still always be colour (each store will show colour palettes that are slightly different, based on the demand of their customer), the season will open up with a lot of black, grey and shades of brown and camel.  The exciting part is that we are seeing suede, shearling, fur, cable knits, subtle prints, plaids, fringe, patterned knits, and textured tights and leggings – all of which add interest and amazing layering possibilities as the cooler weather sets  in.  Winter cream has evolved from last year’s winter white.  A must have buy for fall will be the winter cream sweater and it will come in many shapes and forms.

Look for quilted pieces, waffle knits, marled knits, anything with some nice texture and feel. Layering is very important so prints and textures can certainly be combined in ways that are both appealing to the eye and flattering to the figure.

Always remember, a scarf is a very inexpensive way to add some colour to your day. When the backdrops are neutral, you can really alter your look with scarves and accessories.

And guys – some of this applies to you too.  Popping a colourful shirt or tie onto a neutral outfit instantly changes the look.  Weekend and casual wear for men will include many of the textures and fabrics mentioned above, with waffled Henley tees, chunky knits and tonal prints all coming into play.

Most of our customers tell us while they never want summer to end, the thought of fall clothing takes the edge off! Now let’s see what interesting combinations you come up with!

Written by: Joelle Goddard-Cooling

Joelle Goddard-Cooling and her husband Jeff Cooling are the owners of Joelle’s and Jeff ’s Guyshop
and are partners with Lou Frasca and Dan Bishop at Scrivener’s
Men’s Apparel. All three businesses are located on Brant Street in Downtown Burlington.

John Best had enjoyed a lengthy media management career, in television and radio and now print. As Vice President, News at CHCH in Hamilton, John oversaw a significant expansion of the news operation. He founded Independent Satellite News, Canada’s only television news service providing national content to Canadian independent TV stations. John is a frequent political commentator on radio and television, a documentary producer and author of a book and numerous articles on historical and political subjects. John is a past recipient of the New York Festival’s award for writing in the International TV category.

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