Work With What You've Got


This Friday, on the Today Show,  I had the opportunity to talk about how to repurpose your summer wardrobe staples come fall. I honed in on three key pieces: white jeans, a striped tee shirt and a dark ground floral maxi dress. As far as I’m concerned, you do not need to relegate these items to the back of the closet at the stroke of Labor Day; you can re-imagine these pieces with some easy style updates.


Many believe that wearing white jeans into fall is a fashion no no. I strongly disagree. This season particularly. One of the biggest messages for fall is the infusion of leopard in its natural colorway and the re emergence of camel, caramels and browns into the color mix.  In New York especially, having neutrals in addition to black to consider feels like breaking news. Nothing looks more chic than white jeans back to this brown color palette. In the segment, I put our model Cynthia in a Camel coat from Asos, Asos Oatmeal sweater and layered a Zara leopard scarf on top. Her suede camel boots were also Asos. You can really have fun with the white jean as your canvas. In another version of this look, I would do a leopard coat for those of you excited to take the animal trend one notch further. I also love the idea of a black patent loafer to tie back to the leopard spots.


I urge all of us to take a cue from chic French women everywhere and make the striped tee your layering piece under sweaters, blazers and jackets often. It perks up every outfit. For summer, I’ve been loving mine with my new denim Redone skirt. For fall, I’m excited to layer it under a plaid menswear blazer or my more streamlined simple blazers. I’ll wear that with jeans or leather leggings when it starts to get cold. I love layering necklaces on top too from mixed chains to longer pendants. There is something about the bold necklace against the stripes that works.  In the segment, I styled the striped tee under a soft blazer from H & M and a vegan leather pencil skirt from Universal Standard.


Layering is the key message when thinking about transitioning your summer items into fall. I am a big proponent of buying tee shirts that are very fitted and work well in the layering process. I am personally loyal to Majestic Tee shirts. They are high quality, seem to last forever and also launder and layer impeccably. Ever since the slip dress came onto the fashion scene, fashion *it* girls have been showing us how to layer tee’s and turtlenecks underneath our dresses to lengthen the lifespan of the look. It’s a great way to make a summer dress work into fall and winter. In the segment, Allyson is also wearing a vegan leather jacket on top from It goes without saying that you can swap out your summer sandals for boots and lengthen your maxi’s lifespan. It has year-round potential.

Below is the segment and links to the items featured as well as some additional pieces to consider. Working with what you already own is extremely satisfying. Sometimes I take everything out of the closet and lay it on the bed. When I can see everything,  new combinations will present themselves and just like that, a new outfit is born. I urge you to do the same :-)



Brooke Jaffe