how to wear summer clothes in fall

How to Wear Summer Clothes in Fall

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One big way to maximize your wardrobe is to make your summer wardrobe work for fall/winter and vice versa. With some simple styling tips, you can get more mileage out of your wardrobe by making your summer clothes work for the colder seasons. And not only that, but you’ll save money by buying fewer clothes as well. Here’s how!

How to Wear Summer Clothes in Fall

If you have closet space, it’s a good idea to not pack your off-season clothes away. Either push them to the back of your closet or move them to another room, but make sure they’re still in reach!

I’m going to take a couple of key pieces that most women have for summer and give you visual examples and outfit inspirations on how to take your summer outfit and make it work for fall!

Denim Shorts

A pair of denim cut-offs are perfect for the summer. They can be dressed up or down and go with pretty much any shoe style. If you want to wear sandals with denim shorts you can. If you want to look Parisian chic and wear them with espadrilles, you still can! Below is a sample classic outfit of how to wear your denim shorts in summer.

shorts | shoes | bag

Now with some simple outfit tweaks, we made those denim shorts look great for fall! With opaque tights, ankle boots, and a tweed blazer, this outfit still looks classic instead of teenage hipster. 😉

Try keeping your tights (or leggings) and boots the same color to make your legs look long! If you want to try something new, consider switching out your ankle boots for knee-high boots or combat boots. A chunkier sole like what combat boots have will work well for this outfit, giving off a casual and stylish vibe.

Related: Style Hacks to Make Your Summer Clothes Winter Approved For even more tips related to this post, like how to make crop tops work for cooler weather!

Sleeveless Dress

When it comes to summer dresses, strapless and sleeveless are popular for the hot weather. Though the one below is not as “summery” as you’d usually see, here’s a classic and chic way on how to wear a dress for summer. Paired with straw accessories and leather sandals, this look screams “South of France!”

dress | bag

bag | similar blazer | similar shoes

By adding a scarf and an oversized blazer (as well as taking away summery accessories), this summer dress looks oh so chic for the fall season. And as with all the outfits in this post, this look is versatile and easy to customize too!

Try switching out an oversized blazer for a worn-in leather jacket for a cool and edgy look. An easy way to add a French flair to your fall fashion is to throw on a trench coat over your dress. Or perhaps a denim jacket is more your speed.

Whatever your outerwear choice, just make sure you opt for something with long sleeves, so it looks weather-appropriate for the colder months.

Even if you have a flowy maxi dress, the “rules” still apply to make a summer dress work for the cooler months. A long sleeve outerwear piece and a thick scarf with closed-toed shoes!

Quick tips:

  • Adding layers to your summer clothes will help you to be able to wear them in fall/winter.
    Ideas: sweaters, cardigans, blazers, and jackets over dresses, sleeveless tops, and skirts. Shirts/turtlenecks under tank tops and sleeveless dresses.
  • Add tights or leggings under shorts, skirts, and dresses.
  • Switch out sandals for slides, loafers, or ankle boots.
  • Some summer styles can work for the cooler months if they are in darker colors
    Example-floral prints should always be in darker, dramatic hues

As you can now see, these summer staples can work for any time of year! Next season, try keeping out your off-season clothes and getting creative with how you can style them in new ways. Even your white jeans can be kept out for fall and winter and worn past labor day!

If you’re feeling like you’re running out of things to wear, stocking up on the latest fall trends isn’t always the answer. Though it’s not wrong to add a few fashion trends to your closet, try these style tips first the next time you’re feeling bored with your wardrobe.

Want more ideas on how to maximize your wardrobe and get your fall wardrobe in tip-top shape? Keep reading!

Up Next:
How to Maximize Your Wardrobe + Get The Most Out of What You Have!
Classic Fall Capsule Wardrobe (Shopping List, Outfit Ideas, & More!)

how to make summer clothes work for fall


Founder and editor of My Chic Obsession, Carolyn is your trusted fashion maven. Carolyn's drive to help others achieve a classic and timeless wardrobe fuels her posts, making a go-to resource for style seekers worldwide. Beyond the wardrobe, she resides in the heartland of the Midwest, dreaming up new ideas and raising her two lively boys - her biggest fashion critics.