Although heat indexes here have been flirting with triple digits, fall collections will start hitting the stores this month. And while it’s hard (and sweat-inducing) to look at long sleeves, heavy fabrics and outerwear, it actually is a good time to look in your closet and see what you want to add (and give away).

Fashion Group International ( has published its Best Bets list. It includes some repeat trends along with a few interesting newbies: corsetry, pajamas, ‘athLuxury,’ layering, oversized, gender-free, knits, ‘street,’ velvet, leather (suit)/shearling (zip-off), military (camouflage, army coat), prints, fur, tops (shirt/blouse), pants (cropped, wide), skirts (midi/full), dresses (print/waistline-skimming), coat (tech coat/cape), puffers, evening (sweater-over-long skirt/tuxedo dress), shoe (Mary Jane) and bag (the box). Colors run the gamut from pastels and pink to cognac, wine, navy, yellow, evergreen and black (of course!). Did I leave anything out?


You’ll find this fabric everywhere, from apparel to accessories. Find a category in your wardrobe to incorporate this major trend—even Giorgio Armani dedicated his fall collection to black velvet!


From skinny to wide, cropped to flared, pants can be the focal point of your outfit. There’s something for everyone, even if you’re not a ‘pants person.’


the coat
The bigger, the better, and it’s popular to embellish them. Coats are oversized, and shown in techno fabrics. This season is about color, and here’s a perfect opportunity to step outside your comfort level and wear your favorite hue (besides black, of course).


box bags
This season, handbags come in all shapes and sizes, from mini and maxi to crossbody and backpacks. My favorite is the square, or box-shaped bag, which works day or night, casual or formal. This one’s on-trend 24/7!


An obvious silhouette would be a jacket, but why not spice things up and try the look in a skirt? No matter your height, any length goes, from short to long. And to add some punch, be bold and wear color!


Green can spruce up your wardrobe, alone or camouflaged with other colors. Don’t think it’s for you? Well, you can embrace this color (and most any other) by updating your makeup with a complementary lipstick or blush.


Take a leap and give the jumpsuit a try! It’s not just for fun, but totally apropos in evening wear, especially in satin, which gives it a tuxedo look. Pair it with a jacket if need be, and be sure to wear a heel if it’s a wide leg to give you a slimming effect. This also creates a taller profile, especially if you’re petite.

Ellen Soule is a fashion and public relations consultant and the past regional director for Fashion Group International, St. Louis region.