Fall Runway Trends On A Budget

Revamp Your Summer Basics for an Updated Wardrobe


Published: October 16, 2008

It’s that time of year again—when  crisp air begins to seep into the city, piles of multihued leaves line Central Park and runways burst with the hottest fall trends. Fall ignites something within many women—a sudden desire to spend hours scouring the stores for the hottest fashions, the sheer bliss that only grows with each additional shopping bag.

Students of Fordham College at Lincoln Center (FCLC), living in one of the fashion capitals of the world, have it rough when it comes to balancing a college budget and constantly evolving fashion trends. However, there is good news: with a few simple updates, summer wardrobes can be easily transitioned into fall without breaking the bank.

Country Inspired
“The fashion flock’s native habitat may be city streets, but this season, designers have gone mad for plaid and discovered a need for tweed,” gushed Vogue about this hot fall trend. This look is easy and popular among young celebs like Lauren Conrad and Sienna Miller. Luckily for students, it can be channeled with a simple and cheap addition to your basics. A plaid shirt is accessible in every price range. Throw it on with jeans and a pair of boots, and you’ll be set with a casual outfit for class or for running errands around the city. Forever 21 offers tanks and button-downs ($19.90) in plaid, as well as a plaid blazer ($29.90). If your budget is even tighter, Forever 21 offers accessories like headbands ($2.80) and bangles ($3.99) as low priced options.

Glamour Magazine agrees that the country trend doesn’t have to break the bank, “Simply throw on this trendy new piece with basic black separates that you already have in your closet, like a turtleneck or knee-length dress.”

Florals were in this summer and have stuck around for the fall.

“Just because they are out of bloom doesn’t mean they are out of style. The bright prints of the summer get a fall update with big painterly buds in muted shades,” said People StyleWatch. Reuse the floral pieces floating around in your closet by adding dark tights and a cardigan to bring floral skirts and dresses into fall. And don’t forget the tops! With the layering trend still dominating the fashion world, lightweight floral tops can be transitioned into fall with the addition of skinny jeans and a wool sweater. Still want the rush of purchasing a new piece? Use accessories to channel the floral trend.

“Fall brings flowers on necklaces, earrings, even shoes and bags. Set them where they can be admired best—against solid pieces from your wardrobe, not floral clothes,” said In Style Magazine. Use accessories as a cheap way to add new pieces to your wardrobe, whether it’s a scarf, bag, jewelry or even tights. Try Urban Outfitters for lacey floral tights ($14) or Forever 21 for a glitzy floral cocktail ring ($5.80).

Menswear is totally in this season, and with good reason. It’s classy, it’s funky and it’s super-chic.

“Menswear has emerged as one of the smartest ways to stand out while still embracing a major trend. Katharine Hepburn defined it, Diane Keaton refined it as Annie Hall and now a new generation of style-setters is bringing sexy androgyny back with an indisputable air of confidence,” Elle Magazine said. This trend is amazingly accessible. Adding a vest or a blazer to your wardrobe generates numerous outfit choices. With a pair of jeans and a T-shirt it’s casual but chic. Dress up the trend over a skirt or dress, and for a more tailored look, add it to the wide-leg pant carried over from last season. Visit the Gap for a cozy sweater vest ($38) or Target ($39.99) and Forever 21 for structured blazers ($22.80).

The layered look maintained a presence on every runway. Finally, a trend everyone can follow! Whether your style is girly, conservative or grunge, you can use the pieces you already own to follow a popular trend.

“Layering can be a big coat over a voluminous skirt with a legging peeking out underneath. It can be a big chunky sweater over a narrow pant. It can be two coats over each other or simple knitted dresses worn with big belts. The designers really took layering to every possible extreme. And there are lots of different ways to do it,” MSNBC said. How much easier can you get?

Layer some of your basic summer tanks, throw a cardigan on top and belt it for a sophisticated fall outfit. Go punk by layering multiple metal necklaces over a band tee and adding a faux leather jacket which, contrary to popular belief, can be obtained for as little as $35 at stores like Target and H&M.

So there you have it—a hot new fall wardrobe, created simply by revamping your tired summer basics. Now every student can rock the trends and still afford the subway ride home!