Ask a Vogue editor about the season’s top trends or which micro-mini bag is going to sell out first, and she or he can rattle off a dozen suggestions. But you’d be better off asking a much simpler question: Which items in your closet do you wear the most? Those pieces tend to reveal so much more about the wearer: They’re our perfect, go-to basics, the things we reach for on the best and worst days, that we never get tired of, that we’ve spent years searching for: the perfect jean, the perfect sweater, the perfect shoe.
It’s inevitable that we start dreaming about those pieces—and maybe picking up fresh new versions—at the end of summer, when the humidity is stifling, all of our summer dresses need to be dry-cleaned, and we have “back to school” on the brain (for us, it’s “back to fashion month”). Here at Vogue, what qualifies as a fall “basic” could range from a black sweater to pair of honey bee–adorned pearl earrings (both have wear-everyday potential!), and while some of us are buying things we already know we love (like fashion news editor Staff Yotka, who’s investing in another pair of clunky loafers), others are in the mood to try something totally new (like senior fashion news writer Brooke Bobb, who wants to wear more color). Skip the end-of-summer sales and get a head start on fall with all of their expert picks below.
Sally Singer, Creative Director
My fall must-haves involve one big new splurge—a camel hair and washed satin coat from Zanini—and then a restock on my most-worn basics. The Row jeans cost a small fortune, but I replace them once every seven years (amortize!).
Mark Holgate, Fashion News Director
An update on the Guernsey sweater I have been wearing for years: I’m switching the plain navy blue, the classic, for a new striped version. It’s almost as much as buying a coat, but I am obsessed with this Loewe houndstooth scarf, especially since it’s made in Scotland. This Carhartt jacket is lightweight yet can also stand up to the unpredictable elements, which is essentially the definition of fall in New York!
Chioma Nnadi, Fashion News Director
Though it might be blisteringly hot right now, it’s usually at this time of year when I start thinking about what coat I want to rock for the fall. At the moment, I’m loving the idea of a toggle coat as my staple, though I’m feeling for something with a twist. Rokh’s deconstructed version of that classic Paddington Bear style totally fits the bill. As far as jewelry goes, I’m a sucker for layering necklaces, even in the fall. I’m into the idea of a pearl-studded choker, like this one from Washed Ashore, peeking out from a crew-neck sweater, say. Plus, it’s so delicate I’ll basically never have to take it off. My favorite pieces always come with a sense of humor. With that in mind, Of Rare Origin’s new honey bee pearl earrings are just the kind of thing I can see myself wearing with everything. And when it comes to layering pieces, nothing beats a good long-sleeved graphic tee. I’ve started collecting the ones by the L.A.-based brand Total Luxury Spa.
Rickie De Sole, Head of Fashion Initiatives