Fall into fashion: How cold weather may affect your style

As the temperature drops, we can expect a resurgence of autumnal memes such as “Can’t wait 'til it gets colder so I can really start dressin'." More often than not, this meme parodies itself, channeling hyper-exaggerated and comedic versions of fall or winter wear. 

Infamous outfits worn by celebrities and fictional characters are commonly alluded to in this format. Examples include a suds-induced SpongeBob Squarepants sporting a complete winter ensemble or a vast array of winter coats photoshopped to be dramatically oversized.

These satirical examples are somewhat based in reality. Puffy coats do make people look more like marshmallows and an excess of layers does sometimes look tacky. I frankly cannot imagine style mattering to anyone when it’s freezing outside. 

But I also don’t believe this quote to be referring to how great one can dress in 10-degree weather. It’s much more likely that this quote is pertaining to the type of outfits one can wear in the fall and beginning of winter. Although taking this meme seriously might induce big eye rolls for people, there are genuinely some of us who thrive in sweater weather. 

With that being said, we can attempt to figure out how and why fall fashion appeals to so many people.

Summer wear will almost always be casual, but fall or winter wear can be either casual, formal or anywhere in between. Of course, there are exceptions and clothing can look good or bad in any season. 

What truly matters is the outfit one chooses, how it works with one’s figure and how one chooses to style it. Tan France, fashion stylist on Netflix’s “Queer Eye,” takes his clients’ insecurities and replaces them with fitted shirts and pants. No matter the weather, he can turn style-blind clients into chic individuals.

Unfortunately, we cannot all be like France. The average person not attuned to fashion would undoubtedly find the cooler months easier for selecting visually pleasing attire. When the weather cools down, clothing variations are endless. 

Cardigans, sweaters, vests and blazers are my go-to fall clothing items. Sometimes something as simple as a cardigan can make us look more put together than we actually feel. When all else fails, almost any outfit can be disguised by a nice jacket. 

The cold weather also comes with myriad cosmetic perks and even more lazy ones. Bad hair days can be covered by hats or beanies and more body coverage means less time spent shaving.

Not only do layers warm and comfort the body, but also they disguise the least desirable parts of it. Showing bare skin has always been the part I hate the most about summer. I appreciate fall for how I can wear a skirt while still feeling covered by a pair of tights. 

Scoliosis affects my whole body, including the way I walk. A flannel tied over my waist and a pair of sturdy boots somehow help my body and walk appear more natural. What can’t be avoided during the heat can at least be hidden during the cold weather. 

This applies to anyone uncomfortable about their weight, scars or any part of their appearance. Layered clothing can hide physical insecurities and give anyone a slight confidence boost.

Fall and winter color palettes make mixing and matching layers easier, creating soothing color contrasts. Besides this, color is a vital part of all clothing in general. Colors emote certain moods which can either dress up or dress down an occasion. 

Fall and winter’s muted color palettes often appear slicker and more professional than summer palettes do. Although livelier, bright summer colors often conjure up a tackier or more casual image. More often than not, darker makeup and clothing produce an elegance that brighter colors cannot touch.

Much of the speculation among seasonal fashion is subjective. Despite this, there are a few indisputable truths about cold-weather clothing that makes the saying, “Can’t wait 'til it gets colder so I can really start dressin'” less of a joke and more of a fashion-starved battle cry. 

For those of us who hide our sweaters in our closets all summer while we dream of the weather hitting below 70 degrees, our time has come.

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