Camel Cool

So.  This post is a bit cruel as I plan on featuring my top picks for the fall season and the mercury is still hitting a stifling 90 degrees here in the District.  BUT I just can’t help myself — I’ve been so totally inspired over the past few weeks by the impending fall season, I just have to share my lust list, which is heavy on one color: camel.  It was on the runway, and I savored every look:

From left to right: Dries Van Noten, 3.1 Phillip Lim, Chloe, and Gucci

We all know my obsession with Chloe, and head designer Hannah MacGibbon was all about the color camel this past season. Most of her models donned coordinating camel separates on the runway, and I am majorly into the 70s cool vibe it conjures.

Chloe on the runway — yes, please.

So, without further adieu, a few of my favorite looks for the season (note that camel may just be the perfect transition color for late summer-to-fall hybrid wardrobe choices…)  I’m in love with this leopard print shift, which is classy and yet on point for fall (See by Chloe, $390, Net-A-Porter):

I’d pair it for now with a statement necklace (Amrita Singh, $250, Couture Candy) and some black pumps (you know I love a Louboutin — these puppies will take you where you need to go, year-round — $595, Net-A-Porter):

When the temp drops, add some black tights and, for a bit of edge, consider upping the ante with these slouchy booties by Tory Burch (I have to show them off, as I just snapped them up at Tory Burch’s private sale for 60% off — down from $395 to $158!  — you can check out the private sale, too, for some wicked good deals here):

I’ve been sort of lukewarm on the bootie for awhile but I saw the steeply discounted price and instantly envisioned strutting around D.C. in them with my black tights and little shift dresses or skinny jeans and slouchy sweaters and needed them.  Done and done.  If you’re on my page, just imagine, for example, pairing the above booties with this yummy camel-colored cocoon sweater ($80, TopShop) and a pair of snug black jeans (Piper Lime has some distressed J Brands on sale for $74 at present):

I’d probably layer a leopard print top beneath it ($55, TopShop), but a solid black or white v-neck would be a suitable alternative:

terms of accent pieces, you could go one of two ways: upscale with an edge by adding a pair of classy pearl-adorned enorma-studs ($25, TopShop) and a ladylike bag (Valentino, $1,995, Nordstrom):

Or go downtown hipsta with this Lee Angel statement necklace ($128, Shopbop — the “feathers” are made of leather, which would make for an interesting contrast of textures) and the classic Balenciaga arena bag in supple black leather ($1,245, Barney’s — favored by celebs all over the place, including Magpie Maven Kourtney Kardashian, who must own it in every color and texture ever released)

And when we hit the cooler climes, snuggle up with this to.die.for military coat by Barney’s house label ($1,195, Barney’s):

Love the cinched waist — so flattering.  I had a coat in a similar style (with slightly more exaggerated, 3/4-length “bell” sleeves) in black wool that I wore virtually every day for two winter seasons and eventually had to throw away, much to my dismay.  (It was from Zara and it fell apart.  Tragic.)  Because I am readjusting to the workaday world after my delicious wedding and honeymoon break, I am cheering myself along by envisioning all kinds of exciting work wardrobe additions.  I’ve been absolutely drooling over this Michael Kors camel-hued upscale tie dye silk dress for a year, and may just have to make the plunge (on sale for $550, StyleBop):

How gorgeous with a pair of camel pumps ($114, Lori’s Shoes) and some enorma-pearls ($55, Max and Chloe)?

If that seems a little too staid for you, muss things up a touch with a tangle-of-chains-and-pearls necklace, which J. Crew has executed excellently for us for several seasons in a row (on sale for $99, J. Crew):

Another workerbee alternative?  This versatile silk draw-string waist dress by Parisian chic Vanessa Bruno Athe ($101, TheOutnet):

I’d throw a slouchy printed scarf around my neck (Alexander McQueen, $293, Farfetch) and slip into some leopard print flats (I’m obsessed with these bow-toe Lanvins — $525, Zoe):

I must say, though, that you can find some pretty chic leopard print flats from virtually anywhere.  My fashion-forward little sis (currently studying fashion design at Parson’s!) snagged a pair from H&M, and I almost snapped these Ann Taylor versions up on a whim before deciding to take a gander at what else was out there.  Alternately, for a slightly dressier work affair, how picture perfect are these Stella McCartney slingbacks ($645, Net-A-Porter)?

They were the darlings of fashion editors around the world — I saw them featured a million and one times in every fashion spread imaginable.  The cut of the shoe adds a little interest, and the color is spot-on.  Speaking of spots — if you forgo the Lanvin flats and instead slip into some nude pumps, consider toting around this little makeup case as a clutch ($39.50, 1154 Lill Studio):

I’m obsessed with the slightly faded coloring.  I would totally wear it as a clutch — once I heard that Kate Spade wears her pencil cases out as evening bags, I knew I had it on good authority that I could wear bags creatively.  I’m also digging the idea of a fitted black long-sleeved shirt or turtle-neck ($39.50, J. Crew) with this wool-blend pleated skirt (Stella McCartney, $795, Net-A-Porter):

Pair with black tights, a funky tribal-inspired necklace (shh, no one’s looking — it’s from I-wouldn’t-be-caught-dead-in-there Chico’s, $68), and either the Bari booties featured above or some black pumps:

I’d probably round things out with this slightly edgy McQueen cashmere blend scarf ($395, Net-A-Porter):

I can feel myself getting all geared up for fall, so I better clip this post short before I go on a shopping binge and bankrupt myself for the remainder of the season.  Two other must-haves that I just gotta throw in there?  First: this awesome and amazing toggle coat ($160, TopShop):

LOVE it.  So Paddington Bear, so preppy-hunter-British, so versatile.  I like the idea of throwing it on with skinny jeans and flat boots.  Second: this camel-and-black spotted scarf ($19, ModCloth):

I love the lightweight texture and soft-looking tassel.  I’m in fact wearing a similar scarf (although mine is leopard print) today and just find it the easiest way to “snazz up” an otherwise straightforward outfit (for me: black flats, an LBD, and my omni-present Ray bans…I overslept this morning and hence wore an “easy out” look).  And lastly: this is a bit arbitrary, but this season I’m super into unusual shapes and hard-to-define pieces.  I like interesting cuts on jackets — especially collarless versions with oversized sleeves and oh-my-gosh-I-gotta-have-it capes, like the Stella McCartney below ($1,085, My Theresa):

If you’re not quite sure about the style (or, more aptly, price tag) of the cape, test the waters with something you otherwise might overlook this season in terms of functionality and cut.  This little TopShop piece (is it a vest? a blouse? a sweater? — $65, TopShop) caught my eye and has me hooked:

Think of the myriad different ways you could sport it: over a long-sleeved tee with skinny jeans, under a blazer, tucked into a high-waist black skirt.  Do it.  Now forget everything in this post and wait until the cool fall air settles in…sigh.

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