Autumn in New York City…and just about anywhere, really…is a time of excitement and frustration for any lover of fashion. We are hopeful for the cooler temps and the myriad cozy, sexy and comforting styles that await us – from wooly knits and booties to thick leggings and structured denim. But, there’s the intervening time of weather schitzophrenia – 80’s today and 50’s tomorrow – that makes the transition of early autumn particularly perilous. With lower humidity and chillier nights, even ‘Indian Summer’ can be a bit of a tease…

So, while we can’t reasonably expect to keep those flip-flops in circulation, there are quite a few summer wardrobe staples that I rely on to get me through…

Summer To Fall JustHave #1: Open-Toed Booties. Pedicure addicts, rejoice! You still have ample excuses to get your weekly foot massage/beauty treatments. Open-toed booties are a great way to transition a summer shift dress, for example, into a more autumnal look.

Summer To Fall JustHave #2: Leather Accessories. Weather it’s a striking leather cuff or a camel-colored tote, leather’s many earthy tones are visually evocative of fall. One of my fave leather looks is a wide leather belt or mini-corset cinched over a drapey sweater and long tee. It’s flattering to most silhouettes and can work over a skirt, a dress or even jeans. Plus, because it’s layered, you can add/subtract as the weather dictates.

Summer To Fall JustHave #3: Opaque tights. Yes, I said tights. Look, I know leggings are all the rage, but I’m still a sucker for the old-school patterned or colored tights when worn under a sweater dress or even a long chambray shirt – which, incidentally, also both look fabulous with the aforementioned leather belt. The thing is, tights are a great way to transition some of your favorite summer dresses deeper into autumn – because they’re warmer than bare skin (duh). Plus, they can completely transform the way a dress looks and even feels.

Summer To Fall JustHave #4: A Neutral Manicure. This is about the easiest way to make your look more subdued and fall-like: opting for more beige and metallic tones. Frankly, the matte looks that are all the rage right now just scream fall and winter to me – and, when paired with some leather accessories, are extremely sexy.

Summer To Fall JustHave #5: A Long, Open Cardigan. Think your summer dresses are going to the back of the closet until the next beach season? Think again! Layer with a long, medium weight open cardigan on top and add a few fall-fresh accessories like oxfords or a pair of houndstooth slip-on sneakers and a heavier statement necklace or cuff and suddenly that breezy dress has a whole new attitude! 

What gets your wardrobe through the transition from summer’s heat to autumn’s chill? Have any #JustHaves you want to share with me and our online community? Tell us on, @JustineSantaniello on Instagram and @JNSantaniello on Twitter – or, better yet, show me with a snapshot or a shopping link!

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