Age-Wise Style: Key Pieces to Update Your Fall Wardrobe

Photo: ImaxTree

InStyle’s Fashion Director Cindy Weber Cleary has been a fashion editor for the past 20+ years. Needless to say, she’s picked up some tricks along the way. Catch her column here each week for how-to tips and style secrets on her favorite, timeless styles. This week, we gave readers the chance to ask Cindy style questions on Facebook. Here, Cindy responds to one lucky reader. Head over to our Facebook page and submit an idea for Cindy’s next column!

Q. “[I'm] trying to revamp my closet for a close-to-50-years-old look. I want more classic sophistication with … some trends mixed in without looking too youthful.” —Nicole McGarvey

A. You are in luck as there are many current trends that women can wear at all ages!


One of my favorite updaters for fall is an animal print such as leopard. Animal-print accessories such as a bag or shoe instantly add some attitude. I prefer natural, neutral shades. If you want to wear a printed item of clothing vs. an accessory, choose one that isn’t too sexy or revealing as animal prints already have a slightly racy connotation: a long-sleeve blouse or sweater in a neutral leopard pattern, for example, can be very chic.


Shop it: Etro top, $519,; Michael Kors, $495,; Elizabeth and James bag, $695,


Another great way to add some oomph to your wardrobe is with a pop of bright color. This fall you will find plenty of rich jewel-tones, ranging from ruby red to emerald green to lapis blue. An easy way to integrate these shades is to keep your outfit tonal—for instance, pairing a bright blue bag with a navy dress—or to wear just one colorful item and let everything else stay muted. A brightly colored bag can really give your wardrobe a lift.


Shop it: J.Crew blazer, $198,; Piere Hardy bag, $1,565,; Alexander Wang shoe, $475,


A chunky knit can also add visual interest to an outfit, but bear in mind that cable- and waffle-knits can also add volume. If you are busty you can get the same textural effect by wearing a long knitted scarf or a cardigan, open over a matte top. Keeping everything in the same color or color family to allow the texture to stand out and will also create a nice vertical line which can be slimming.


Shop it: YMC sweater, $418,; Lala Berlin scarf, $255,; Topshop sweater, $68,

Runway inspiration at top (from left): Michael Kors, Sportmax, Fendi

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