This post is a little late this season, so without further ado, let’s get to it because Autumn has officially begun. Here are my top 13 must haves for Fall and Winter 2012. The items cut across all body types, lifestyles, budgets, fashion personas and age groups. It’s a question of finding the right version of that item that works best for you. 

  1. Booties: All outfits can be worn with some form of bootie these days. From jeans, classic pants, cropped pants, jumpsuits and trendy trousers, to dresses, skirts and shorts. An assortment of booties, from casual to dressy, in all sorts of colours, heel heights, patterns, fabrications and styles is THE way to amp up your cold weather wardrobe. Start building a bootie collection. 
  2. Trousers: It’s the third trouser season in a row, and the abundance is amazing. Add a few pairs of trousers to your wardrobe, be they classic boot cuts, wide legs, slouchy styles, a baggy silhouette with waist pleats, cigarette pants or harem pants. 
  3. Leather: Add a leather (or pleather) piece to your wardrobe, be it a jacket, coat, skirt, pair of pants or shorts, dress or top. A leather trimmed item is just as on trend and a nice substitute if a full leather piece is not your thing. Think ALL colours of leather. 
  4. Texture: Faux fur is an easy way to add texture to your outfit. So are items in suede, bouclé knit, houndstooth, tweed, mole skin and waxed denim. 
  5. Pattern: Pattern mixing is bigger than ever and judging by what I see on the catwalks for next year, there is no stopping the trend. Think pattern in ALL wardrobe items. If patterned clothing is not your thing, think patterned belts and bags. 
  6. Colour: Add colour to that neutral wardrobe in the form of brights, pastels, earth tones, mid tones or jewel tones. We will miss the colour when it’s not as widely available so stock up now. 
  7. A Chunky item of Knitwear: Think cables and fisherman’s rib knitwear in pullovers and fast pull-on cardigans. Wear them oversized or in a tailored silhouette. 
  8. Something Burgundy: It’s the colour of the season and any wardrobe item in burgundy will count. 
  9. Something Metallic: If the sci-fi trend is too crazy, there’s always lurex thread and sequins to use as a substitute. 
  10. Something Oversized: Surrender your shape, ladies. Think oversized knitwear, a boxy jacket, boyfriend jeans, slouchy trousers or something else that looks too big but is supposed to fit in an extra roomy way. 
  11. Something Lace: Lace is a classic, although as a nod to the Baroque trend it’s particularly on trend at the moment. Think lace top, dress, skirt, trousers, shorts, jacket or shoes. If a lace item is over the top, sport a lace trimmed item instead. 
  12. Daytime Clutch: You can probably think of 10 bad reasons not to carry a daytime clutch handbag, but I can think of five good ones and will cover them next week. I dare you to sport a daytime clutch.
  13. Something Out of Your Style Comfort Zone: Last but not least, try a daring outfit combination, a new colour, a new clothing or footwear style, a new pattern, or an atypical item for your style persona that speaks to you for some reason. Just for fun. 

Peplums, slipper flats, high top sneakers, sassy sweatshirts, utility jackets, midis, printed pants, metal capped footwear, flat oxfords, menswear inspirations, vintage brooches and strappy pumps are a few more ways to add seasonal pizazz to your cold weather look. 

I’ve just ordered a chunky item of knitwear after not wearing chunky knits for 20 years. I have my eye on a pleated rubberized midi skirt to take me out of my comfort zone. And I’ve just bought a multi coloured pullover with a burgundy stripe as my nod to the burgundy trend. If these work out, my items on this list are covered. How about you?