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Back to School Fashion Musts For Moms


My son is starting Kindergarten next week, so I’m being given a swift reminder that Fall is just around the corner. And while I’m busy purchasing all of his back to school supplies and fall clothing, I can’t help but think that as moms, we should leave a little room in the budget to shop for ourselves. And fall fashion is the best fashion, in my opinion.

Today, I’m giving you some inspiration from my friend Kelli, an Austin, Texas-based fashion blogger who writes the fashion, health, & lifestyle site Keeping It Short & Sweet, as well as this extremely inspiring Instagram account @shortandsweet_atx. She’s also a teacher, and has a daughter who is going away to college this fall, so she’s currently preparing both herself and her daughter to go back to school! She’s really getting ready on all fronts, here.

Navy and White Fall Fashion

This navy and white blouse is a stand-out piece for fall that can be styled many different ways.

So what is Kelli wearing for the start of the school year this fall, and what can you as moms buy for yourselves that you won’t feel bad about purchasing, since you also need to focus on your kiddos? We’ve got you covered, below.

Five Must-Haves For Your Fall Fashion Wardrobe

Classic Denim Is Key

As always, and probably until the end of time, jeans will be a staple of the American wardrobe. Denim is a smart purchase each season, provided you’re buying the right styles.

Fall 2017 Denim and Sweater Outfit

This pair of denim can be worn casually for daytime, or dressed up for an evening out. Focus on how the style fits your body and fits into the rest of your wardrobe.

You want to invest in a great-fitting pair of denim, in a versatile style that can get a lot of use. Think about what style you always gravitate toward, and what you’d wear a lot.

I suggest buying classic cuts (skinny, boyfriend, boot cut) in a medium or dark wash, without a lot of frills and design details. They’ll look classic and understated, and they’ll make a solid foundation for your oufit. Plus, styles like this can be worn day or night, and depending on your profession, can often be styled for the workplace. And the best denim is so soft that it almost feels like a pair of sweatpants – a fall fashion must, of course.

My favorite brands are DL 1961, AG, and the Pilcro denim line from Anthropologie. I just love how each of these brands fit, so I recommend checking them out. But since there are a million brands that fit millions of different bodies differently, denim is kind of a guessing game. Just keep trying new styles and new brands until you find what fits your body and your budget best, and try not to get discouraged if it takes you a while. It will be worth the wait and the effort, just like anything else in life!

For a special guide on buying the most stylish mom jeans on the planet, check out our continuously updated style guide!

Look For Stylish Layering Pieces

Lightweight jackets and blazers are quintessential Fall fashion staples. They just belong over a tee or a lightweight sweater. Plus, a classic jacket is the perfect item to transition from those warm summer evenings to the crisp nights of fall when you don’t yet need a coat.

Casual Fall Blazer and Jeans

A casual, neutral-colored blazer that fits over a tee or light sweater will be an essential Fall layering piece.

The jacket Kelli’s chosen above works perfectly as a solid transition piece. She’s done a great job of putting together a really classic outfit, and letting her shoes add a pop of color and pattern.  For more ideas on how to style jackets, I’ve also written more about them here and here.

Lightweight Sweaters Will Take You Far

Lightweight sweaters are what fall fashion is all about. From a classic round-neck cashmere sweater (my all-time favorites are from J.Crew), to a super trendy and adorned style, the sky is the limit.

Versatile Pink Sleeveless Sweater Tank

This pink turtleneck sleeveless sweater is so sweet and versatile. It can be worn on its own when the temps are warmer, and still layered under a lightweight jacket or blazer when it’s cooler out.

Plus, there are an unimaginable number of styles at every single price point, so everyone is covered. For good measure, I’d recommend buying both simple, classic styles, as well as some fantastic statement sweaters.

I particularly love the lilac sweater Kelli recently purchased, below. The sleeves are so dramatic and stunning, and yet she’s going to be able to get so much wear out of it. It’s the perfect style for the office, or for daily wear with your kids – but this piece can also go out to dinner, a date, or brunch with your girlfriends.

Lilac Sweater with Embellished Sleeves

This sweater has a simple cut, and is therefore really versatile – and yet, the dramatic sleeves make it stand out as a really special piece.

Fun Jewelry, Shoes, and Bags Will Round Out Your Look

They’ll also set the tone for whether your outfit is daytime or evening appropriate, work appropriate, or going out with the kids appropriate. Have fun with colors and patterns, and see how different accessories can make your same outfit look completely different.

Kelli’s fun leopard-print bag below makes such a pop against her classic denim and espadrilles. She can wear this just about anywhere, and she looks so chic.

Leopard Print Clutch and Black Espadrilles

Your accessories will round out your overall look and make it really stand out.

You can also see below how Kelli has styled the sweater and jeans outfit from earlier in this article with a very different pair of shoes. The red block heel sandals make this outfit more formal than the sneakers she chose before. And if you love block heel sandals as much as I do, you’re definitely going to want to read this article and also this one for more inspiration and pairs to shop.

Red Block Heel Sandals and Fall Sweater

The red in her shoes mimics the red stripe running through each sleeve. It makes a bold statement and adds a fun touch to this outfit.

Hopefully the items above will have given you a little inspiration for getting your fall fashion together. The temps will be cooling soon, and now you know what items you should be scoping out for your closet.