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The 7 Best Fall Trends for Women Over 40

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It’s officially time to whip out your leather jacket and dust off your plaid, because fall’s just around the corner. And by hook or by crook, we’re going to dress up this year even if the only place we’re headed is our favorite local coffee shop. Here you’ll find the best fall trends for women over 40 to shop and wear now through the end of the season (and every year after that). All super stylish and sophisticated, just like you.

The 9 Best Fashion Tips for Women Over 40


Edward Berthelot/Getty Images

1. Leather Outerwear

This fall, take the moto look you know and love a step further and invest in a proper leather coat, one with buttons instead of zippers and a hemline that hits somewhere around mid-calf. It looks just as polished as a wool coat, but the thinner fabric lends itself to a less-bulky silhouette—especially if it comes with a waist tie. And don’t feel obligated to stick to basic black—shades of blue, green and even red are just as versatile.

Shop the trend: ASOS Curve ($71); Sanctuary ($99); Babaton ($198); Bardot ($199); Nanushka ($695; $278); Johnathan Simkhai ($790)

Edward Berthelot/Getty Images

2. Leather Trousers

Honestly, leather (and faux-leather) in all forms is slowly but surely becoming a standard fall wardrobe staple. Don’t worry about looking like a wannabe rock star—when paired with a structured blazer, classic button-down or otherwise chic blouse, leather pants lose most of that punk edge and instead look sleek and elegant. Opting for a straight- or wide-leg silhouette will also look more sophisticated than leather leggings or skinnies.

Shop the trend: Open Edit ($59); Free People ($78); Blank NYC ($98); Wilfred ($148); Agolde ($298); Madewell ($398)

Edward Berthelot/Getty Images

3. Bold Gold Jewelry + Tailoring

Both these trends have a posh, expensive look but that’s doubly true if you wear them together. Layer an easy T-shirt under a structured blazer and add a chunky gold chain or a more delicate number with a baroque pearl charm or hammered metal coin (or sport them all at once) for an outfit that’s both trendy and chic and that works equally well for both Zoom office meetings and dinners out on the town.

Shop the trends: BaubleBar necklace ($48); J.Crew necklace ($58); Missoma necklace ($420); AUrate x Kerry necklace ($530); Monica Vinader x Doina necklace ($720); ASOS blazer ($50); Treasure & Bond blazer ($89); Bardot blazer ($129); Good American blazer ($195); Anine Bing blazer ($349); Ted Baker London blazer ($425)


Edward Berthelot/Getty Images

4. Saturated Hues

Fall typically issues in a wave of dark, moody hues like forest green, deep burgundy and every shade of brown, but 2021 is seeing a rush of brighter colors that we just can’t get enough of. Think chartreuse, magenta, cobalt, marigold and Prince-approved violet. And while you can (and should) wear them with other more neutral tones, they look best when paired together for a cheerful and unexpected combination.

Shop the trend: Maeve top ($70); ASOS blazer ($79); Callahan cardigan ($98); Porridge pants ($118; $70); Anthropologie sweater ($120); Enza Costa cardigan dress ($275); MISA Los Angeles top ($310); A.W.A.K.E. Mode sweater ($440)

Edward Berthelot/Getty Images

5. Classic Plaids

Plaid for fall? Yeah, that’s not so groundbreaking. But there’s something about the pattern that just feels so right. This year, opt for soft gray plaid blazers, edgy black-and-white checked trousers and a classic taupe and brown for coats and scarves. Leave the pleated plaid skirts and neon-streaked variations to the under-30 crowd.

Shop the trend: ASOS scarf ($23; $8); FRNCH pants ($100); Anthropologie cape ($110); Vince Camuto blazer ($149); Halogen coat ($179); Sam Edelman coat ($240); Lauren Ralph Lauren coat ($380)

fall trends for women over 40 ribbed knits
@kimair/Instagram

6. Ribbed Knits

Unlike a finer knit (say, a classic cashmere sweater), a ribbed knit is much more forgiving to lumps and bumps, while also offering some light compression. We particularly love how Kim Mitchell rocked this trend. The flowy top accentuates her waist and doesn’t cling to her hips, creating a stunning hourglass shape. Not down with head-to-toe knit? Simply swap your go-to turtleneck for one with a little more texture.

Shop the trend: BP pants ($29); 1.State top ($59) and skirt ($69); Fourteenth Place dress ($69); M.M.LaFleur dress ($195; $135); Banana Republic dress ($139); Favorite Daughter cardigan ($278); Vince sweater ($365)

sequin skirt
Grown and Curvy Woman

7. Everyday Metallics

If you feel like a supermodel and want to rock a bronze satin dress, go on and do it. If you think a shimmering emerald skirt will look best with a refined blouse, à la Georgette of @grownandcurvywoman, then make it yours. It’s definitely easy to start small (like with a clutch or a pair of shoes), but don’t assume you can’t pull off a big, bold statement, even if you’re not headed to a holiday party or festive fête.

Shop the trend: In The Style Plus x Elle Darby top ($48 and pants ($56); Anthropologie skirt ($198; $80); The Daluv skirt ($90); Eloquii leggings ($100); City Chic dress ($109); BB Dakota duster ($148); Saloni skirt ($575; $258)