Cold weather is upon us, bringing not only visions of pumpkin patches and mugs full of warm chai, but also chilly autumn mornings and brisker afternoons.
But fear not, fashion savvy. For those who want to keep warm but still look chic, ponchos are a safe bet.
First springing up in the warmer months, their lighter counterparts were a bit bohemian, a bit refined, and very versatile. Wraps were worn over bikinis at the beach and paired with white pants and heels for a dressier nighttime look. For the fall, ponchos are just as versatile, doubling as fashion statements and cold weather armor. Though they’ve survived the dreaded weeding out of seasonal trends and are hanging on for another round, they have warmed up their look a bit.
Accompanied by whimsical fringe, big cowl necks, and made of anything from wool to acyclic, these ponchos offer a bit of kitschy, old-fashioned flair.
But don’t go raiding Marcia Brady’s closet just yet.
Fall ponchos lend a more sophisticated look than their 1970’s predecessors. Try to keep the color scheme chic and neutral to avoid seeming like you’ve just walked out of the Partridge family’s closet – or like you’re wearing your grandmother’s latest knitting endeavor.
Tans and browns and gradations of black and grey work well, and can be paired with almost any outfit.
The great thing about ponchos is that they can be paired with anything. A walk around campus lends credence to this notion. You can find girls teaming ponchos with suede skirts and boots, jeans and Uggs; layered over tees or button down shirts and worn even with sweats when that 8:40 class seems too hideously early.
For even more versatility, opt for the poncho’s cousin, the shawl. Made from the same materials, but not sewn together to create a neck hole like the poncho, shawls can be clasped shut with a big broach pin to create a poncho, slung over your shoulders in their traditional vein, or gathered around your neck as a bulky scarf. Shawls are also a key item because they can be thrown over denim jackets, and can be toted along for the day in case the temperature drops and you’re looking for a little warmth.
Whichever way you choose, they are sure to guard against the cold while still looking coordinated and stylish.
Sara Getz can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.