I’m pretty sure this white jean outfit is one I’ll never forget wearing. First of all, I was excited to take on the challenge of creating an outfit that looked more like fall than summer even though we were still steeped in warm weather here in Sonoma. Secondly, J.Jill had gifted me a great down quilted coat that I fell in love with instantly and was excited to wear. Thirdly, this is the outfit I was wearing on that Sunday night date night with Russ just hours before unusually high winds started howling, firetrucks began blaring their sirens, and the smell of smoke was overtaking the air. Yup, you guessed it: It was the beginning of the California firestorms that burned out of control over the next several days in beautiful Wine Country counties.
I’ll always be struck by the innocence we enjoyed that night. When Russ was taking these photos we were laughing and being silly. (This guy’s got the patience of someone working on Friday’s New York Times crossword puzzle.) I was happy to be the subject of his photographic skills as I was feeling smart and sassy about this outfit and getting excited about sharing it with you.
So much happened between then and now. You can read about our personal experiences with the fires here and here. But now I’m ready to share with you what you’re used to seeing on this blog: fashion solutions, shortcuts, and styling tips. I can’t tell you how happy I am to be launching into the details of this outfit! Let’s check it out.
This outfit started with white jeans
I started out wanting to pair two things together from different seasons: the cozy fall down quilted J.Jill coat and my white Chico’s jeans that I wore all summer. I was already giving myself props for breaking the “Don’t Wear White After Labor Day” rule. Even though I’ve protested against this rule for years it’s been in our fashion lexicon for decades. It pops up in our minds willy nilly even though we know better.
But it’s not just about breaking rules; it made sense to wear my white jeans now. We’re still having days where it hits 80-90 degrees in the afternoon hours. We’re asking ourselves, “Is it fall or is it still summer?” Please note I was wearing my white ankle jeans, not my white cropped jeans. I respect fall enough to at least stick to the longer length. I’d have given myself a fashion citation if I’d worn the cropped white jeans.
I still had to figure out how to turn my white jeans into a proper fall outfit. I thought color. I grabbed my burgundy J.Crew Tippi three-quarter sleeved sweater for the first time this season. It was nearly 6pm; it was cooling down a bit. This sweater is made from Merino wool but it’s lightweight. Perf. I loved loved the contrast of the white next to the burgundy, the summer next to the fall.
Adding nougat booties and handbag
I could have worn sandals that night but I couldn’t have done that with a clear conscience. I mean it’s fall, folks! My outfit needed to act like that! I’d be comfortable wearing booties with my SmartWool Women’s Secret Sleuth Socks.
I’ve been wearing those sleuth socks all summer inside my sneakers. They’re perfect for booties right now while we can still bare our ankles and be comfortable. They cover my feet and help absorb moisture. They make my footwear more comfortable to wear for long hours.
I knew the boots I wanted to wear: my new Paul Green ankle booties in a color they call Nougat. What the heck is a Nougat? I didn’t know so I looked it up and it’s a candy that’s sweet and sounds delicious and is the color of Grade A maple syrup. Paul Green is a company that gives great cushion and support in their shoes. They get an A grade from me.
I had in mind to pair it with a fall bag of mine, a Botkier.
You’ve seen this one before. Could this be its third year in rotation? I think so! It’s a mix of leather and hide. It has an elegant casual look with its simple lines and design.
Accessorizing this outfit for fall
I decided to cool off the sweet nougat color by sticking to cooler shades in my jewelry. I wore a textured gunmetal earring and a necklace that Erin helped me create. I’ve been wanting some bulky pendants. I’m not a delicate person and although I wouldn’t call myself bulky, I can wear larger scaled accessories especially if they’re the focal point.
I fell for a couple of large scale crystals when Erin and I were at a gem faire recently. In true daughter fashion, Erin said, “Are you getting all Goddess-y on me? Are you going to start reading Tarot cards?” “Well, no Darling, I just like them!” I said. Truth be told, I did feel like they could be great talismans representing feminine power.
She helped choose the chain to put with it and put it together for me two days later. Can I just say that I wore it every day for four days and got compliments each time? (So there!)
The contrast of the burgundy sweater and the white jeans was sharp and modern. I wanted just one piece to tie those two colors together and this pendant was perfect. To my delight the beads (and I don’t know what they’re called) are white/gray. I especially love how the beads echo the white of the jean.
This outfit needs a fabulous coat!
I was aiming for a more fall looking outfit than a summer one and this lightweight J.Jill quilted knee length coat said, “I can do that for you, Brenda! Just watch!” Now my color happiness was peaking. The coat color is called peat but I’ll call it olive green. I loved the triangle of fall colors: burgundy, nougat, and olive green. And it all looked sharper by having the white jeans in place. I love how white calls attention to itself and then your eye goes from there and takes in all the beauty around it.
A fair amount of thought went into putting this outfit together and getting the elements just right but what I like most is that it doesn’t look that way. It’s simple. Each clothing item is simply designed. The bag and booties are simple but they look high quality and will last. They aren’t fast fashion. The jewelry pieces are unique but fairly quiet in their design. This is one of my favorite kind of looks: sophisticated casual with ease. I can’t wait to wear it again! By the looks of our temperatures, the warm weather isn’t leaving very fast. The white ankle jeans are sticking around!
What are style words that resonate with you? What do you want your clothes to say about you? As always, I LOVE hearing from you.
Blessings to you all!