Let’s talk about winter trends! With overnight temperatures dipping, it’s hard to ignore that the winter season is right around the corner. That means it’s time to think about your winter wardrobe so you’re ready to get out of the cold weather and snuggle up in a cozy sweater until the spring thaw comes.
The fashion trends for fall and winter come from the fashion weeks held in January and February. The designers debut their lines, and then the brands interpret what’s on the runways. Those interpretations show up in the stores.
My goal for my seasonal trends post is to share the most wearable trends with you. I survey approachable brands like Loft, J.Crew, Gap, and J.Crew Factory to pull examples for everyday women.
In this post, I’ll cover what’s new and trending with winter colors and fabrics, plus jeans, pants, skirts, dresses, tops, sweaters and blazers, and coats and jackets. I’ll also share some styling tips and 12 outfit formulas you can use to put together on-trend winter looks. In a separate post, I’ll cover winter shoe trends. My winter capsule wardrobe is live now. How to Create a Winter Capsule Wardrobe You Love
Sprinkling trends you love into your winter wardrobe is a great way to keep your look current and fresh. It’s also easy to become influenced by trends and buy things that later make you wonder what the heck you were thinking. When you’re debating whether or not to buy a trend, ask yourself if it’s something you’d want to keep wearing even when the trend is over. This can help you see if it will have a short shelf life in your closet. If it’s a piece you’ll tire of quickly, save money and buy a less expensive version of the trend.
Ready to look at what’s trending in colors and clothing styles for the colder months? Let’s dive in!
What’s new with clothing colors, styles, and silhouettes for winter 2024
“Quiet Luxury” is a trend that debuted this year, emphasizing classic, timeless pieces. It’s not going anywhere for winter. It opens the door to building a minimalist closet full of neutral-colored, long-lasting, high-quality, tailored staple pieces that can be mixed and matched.
90s-inspired fashion is still going strong, emphasizing wide leg and flare jeans, cargo pants, slip dresses, mesh and see-through pieces, long denim maxi skirts, platform and lug sole shoes, crop tops, cropped cardigans with baggy jeans and pants, and sweater vests.
The colors of winter 2024
With quiet luxury comes an emphasis on neutrals and tone-on-tone dressing. That means wearing all one color or an outfit with varying tones or shades of one color. But there are also colors trending.
Red in all shades is still going strong, including burgundies and wine. If you feel like bright red should be reserved for the holidays, or Valentine’s Day, this is the season to grab your red pieces. You’ll also see deep red velvet pieces. If you’re not into wearing a lot of red, try a pop of red with a red purse, red shoes, or even red lips or nails. Style your red with blue, gray, brown, khaki, and black.
We’re also seeing shades of brown; some call brown the new black. You’ll see brown leather pieces, brown sequins, and shades of brown mixed with black. Try pairing brown with gray tones, blue, dusty pink, burgundy, lavender, cream, white and black.
Gray and gray monochromatic outfits are also making a comeback. Gray often appears in the winter months, but head-to-toe gray is a look we’re seeing. I feature my favorite gray tone in my winter capsule wardrobe. Gray works with white and black but also with pastels, bright colors, deep tones, and shades of brown. As you can see in this picture, I’m pairing a column of light gray with a brown Houndstooth blazer.
Kelly green is sticking around as a cheerful holiday color. And you’ll also see dark emerald green in velvet pieces like blazers, pants, and event dresses.
Don’t worry; if you love bright pink, Pantone’s color of the year, Viva Magenta is still in the stores. And you’ll also see lighter pinks.
Silver and gold metallics are coming on strong for the holiday season in the form of sequined shirts, pants, bomber jackets, metallic pleated skirts, and dresses. And if full metallic pieces are too much for you, there are fabrics with metallic threads for a touch of shine.
If you love to wear black, the runways looked out for you, with plenty of black looks. And the black coat is making a comeback.
Black and white outfits and plaids, including Houndstooth, are in. And easily add visual interest to a minimalist outfit.
For fabrics, you’ll see all kinds of textures. Leather, suede, faux fur and shearling, velvet, velvet details, sequins, metallics, colored metallics, satin and silk, pleats, tons of tweed, woven sweaters, and cable-knits are packing the stores. If you’re embracing minimalistic neutral dressing, fabrics with textures offer visual interest to simple looks.
You’ll also see dark florals with gem tones in tops and dresses. Plaid pieces in plaid skirts, dresses, scarves, and even pants are on display for the holidays. If you’re considering plaid pants, read my 12 Best Black Plaid Pants Outfit Ideas and Style Tips post. Polka dot dresses and tops, striped tops and sweaters, and sheer tops also make an appearance.
THE COLORS OF WINTER 2024
It seems like any and all jeans styles are in the stores right now. From classic straight jeans to skinny, cropped flared, bootcut, long wide leg, pleated, and cargo. We are seeing fewer cropped styles of jeans in the stores since the weather is cooler, but people are still wearing cropped jeans with ankle boots.
In my Best Fall Trends + Outfits For Women Over 40 (2023) post, I review current jeans trends and explore how they work for different body types. Check that out for more information.
Learn how to wear ankle boots with socks in my post, 12 Best Tips: How to Wear Socks with Ankle Boots.
For pants, we’re seeing the same styles as in the fall. Wide-leg and tapered pleated trousers, cargo pants, and pants with front patch pockets continue. You’ll see these styles emerging in winter fabrics like corduroy and velvet. Sequined pants or a version of sparkly pants are being shown at every price point from Old Navy and Target all the way up to Ann Taylor, Talbots, and Anthropologie. Plaid pants are another winter option that can add visual interest to an outfit. Read 12 Best Black Plaid Pants Outfit Ideas and Style Tips for styling ideas.
Leggings and bootcut or flared leggings are also trending.
Leather pants are also everywhere. If you have a pair that you’re learning to style, read my post, 20 Best Leather Pants Outfits You’ll Actually Wear.
To learn about how pleated, cargo, utility, and leather pants work for different body types, check out Best Fall Trends + Outfits For Women Over 40 (2023)
You’ll find skirts in various textural fabrics: florals, corduroy, sparkly fabric, sweater material, ribbed material, pleated fabrics, and velvet, denim, silk, sequins, and leather.
Midi-length skirts are dominating the scene right now, but you can find a mini skirt or two as well. Ribbed sweater skirts are still going strong. Wear them with matching sweaters. Learn about the best skirt styles by body type in my fall trends post, Best Fall Trends + Outfits For Women Over 40 (2023).
Dresses are a great option during the holiday season paired with some sheer tights and knee-high boots or ankle boots. You’ll see turtleneck sweater dresses, sweater dresses, and ribbed dresses in midi lengths and knee lengths. Faux leather dresses offer another texture to try. Wear them with ankle boots or pointy-toe ankle wrap heels for an elevated look. Slip dresses are great for folks in warmer climates and can be layered under a leather coat, cardigan sweater, faux fur coat, or leather blazer. Sequined dresses are the perfect New Year’s party dresses. Velvet dresses are great for holiday events and cocktail parties.
Some gorgeous party tops are out for the winter months, from shimmery and sequined to sheer-sleeved blouses, silk and velvet tops in deep gem tones, moody dark florals, and stripes. You’ll still see bodysuits since they offer a tight, clean look tucked into wide leg pants and jeans. Pleats are making their way into blouses, with pleated long sleeves and fronts. You’ll also see voluminous sleeves.
Sweaters & blazers
Sweaters get us through the cold winter months. And some gorgeous ones are out there this year, starting with beautifully patterned fair isle sweaters. Pair them with anything from jeans to silk skirts.
Short textured Chanel-inspired cardigans are still going strong and are perfect paired with wide leg pants and jeans.
We’re still seeing v-neck and crewneck cardigans buttoned up like tops.
Striped and cable-knit sweaters are my favorites as they easily create visual interest in a simple outfit.
Oversized and double-breasted blazers are sticking around.
Sequined jackets are a fun option for the holidays. Wear one layered over a silk dress or unexpectedly paired with jeans.
SWEATERS & BLAZERS
Coats & jackets
Wearing a third piece is always in fashion in the winter months. Your first two pieces are your bottom and top. A third piece is an outfit maker like a blazer or an outer layer like a long statement coat.
This winter, there are plenty of eye-catching options to choose from. From your standard puffer jacket to your teddy coat and sherpa, shearling and faux fur to toggle coats. There are shearling and fur-collared bomber jackets, short double-breasted coats, colorful overcoats, classic tailored black coats, leather trenches, plaid topcoats, and quilted barn jackets. Cropped coats are having a moment since they pair perfectly with wide leg pants and jeans.
COATS & JACKETS
Are you ready to look at some outfit smart casual winter outfits?
12 casual winter outfit ideas
Here are 12 outfit formulas that are on-trend this winter that you can copy as you’re putting together outfits.
Look 1: Pair unexpected pieces together
Anytime you pair unexpected pieces together, it creates a tension that kicks your style up a notch and makes people take a second look. Unexpected pairings would be a sweatshirt with leather or black trouser pants. Trouser pants with sneakers. Or a leather jacket over a long floral dress.
A chambray shirt, leather-like coated jeans, and silver Mary Janes
In this look, I’m pairing a chambray shirt with wide leg coated leather-like black jeans and silver Mary Jane ballet flats for a laid-back look. Mary Janes, leather, and chambray? Yes, yes, and yes.
Look 2: Wear a statement coat
We’re stretching all the ways a statement coat can be worn and pairing them over everything from the expected dress outfit to jeans and even sweatpants for an unexpected combination.
A long statement coat with a turtleneck sweater, kick crop jeans, and loafers
Notice how dramatic a simple jeans look becomes when you pair a long coat with it.
A statement coat with a sweatshirt, sweatpants, and sneakers
Add a long coat over your casual outfits for an elevated look. Pair it with your workout gear next time you leave the house for a fresh look.
Look 3: Pair a short sweater with flowy bottoms
Short sweaters are the perfect match for high-rise, wide-leg pants and trousers. With flowy bottoms, a fitted short sweater helps to define your waist and keeps the look from becoming frumpy.
A black cardigan, black trousers, and black ankle boots
Short sweaters are everywhere. Many of them are textured and super cute. The easiest way to style them is with high-waisted, wide-leg pants or jeans.
Look 4: Wear an elevated top with casual jeans
If you bring home a fancy top, short jacket, or blazer for the holidays, try styling a casual look by pairing it with jeans.
A velvet blazer, gray sweatshirt, kick crop jeans, and black Adidas
Returning to combining unexpected pieces, I’m pairing a velvet blazer with a thin gray sweatshirt, kick crop jeans, and black Adidas. A blazer is very structured, and velvet is an elevated fabric. So, combining it with a sweatshirt and sneakers creates an interesting juxtaposition.
Look 5: Create a tone-on-tone look
Tone-on-tone dressing is super current and an easy way to create a quiet luxury look. Wear different shades of the same or similar colors. It’s super sophisticated, elongates the body, and is minimalistic.
A camel overcoat, cream turtleneck sweater, white kick fit jeans, and taupe ankle boots
In this look, I’m combining neutral light colors with white jeans, a cream sweater, taupe ankle boots, and a camel overcoat. Pairing light colors creates an understated and minimalist look. You may not think of white jeans as a winter fashion staple, but you can totally wear white after Labor Day.
Look 6: Wear a monochrome look
Dressing all in one color creates a simple and chic look. It’s my favorite way to create an outfit with impact. When you’re dressing all in one color, it’s the epitome of quiet luxury. Add visual interest to your look by choosing at least one piece with textured or noticeably woven fabric.
A gray cable-knit mock-neck turtleneck, gray silk skirt, and taupe ankle boots
Notice how the cable-knit detail in the sweater adds visual interest to this all-gray look. When your monochromatic look doesn’t have a ton of color, make up for it by adding textured pieces or pieces with some kind of extra detail, like a chunky sweater with obvious weaving, a knitted pattern, or a puffy sleeve or lace detail on a blouse.
Look 7: Go for denim on denim
Monochromatic looks are also happening with denim, and we’re seeing denim on denim, as in a chambray shirt with jeans. Or a denim jacket with jeans. If you want to avoid the Canadian tuxedo look, keep the tones of your jeans and jacket in different shades.
A chambray shirt, wide leg jeans, and black loafers
With this monochromatic look, I added a belt to help define the waistline. And to have the black belt make sense, I tied it into black loafers and a black bag. Rolling up the sleeves creates a laid-back feel.
Look 8: Wear a matched set
We’re seeing matched sets continue with everything from a full suit to a matching blazer and pants. Or wearing a matching sweater and pants or vest and pants. Matched sets are great because they take the guesswork out of getting dressed.
Black striped matched set
This matched set from Amazon is such a cute winter outfit for when you’re staying at home. It has the softest sweater material. I’ve been looking for matched sets to wear over the holidays when I’m a guest in my family’s home and want to be laid back but feel a bit more elevated than sweats. This is also something I’ll wear working from home. This one has a very high waist for me at 5’6″, so if you’re short-waisted, you’ll want to skip it.
Look 9: Try color-blocking
Color blocking is when you wear blocks of solid color by combining solid pieces together. You can pair different bright shades, like maroon pants, with a red sweater. Or navy pants and a green sweater. Or take a more subtle approach by wearing a red dress with pink heels.
A camel coat, camel sweater, black wide-leg cropped pants, and brown boots
I intentionally match a camel sweater to a camel coat for a color-block feel in this look. Then, I’m adding a third color, brown, that plays well with both black and camel for additional visual interest.
Look 10: Pair black and white together
Pairing black and white together is always a chic and easy look. The contrast created by pairing these two creates a visual impact. You could wear a super-current black and white Houndstooth pattern blazer. Or pair a crisp white shirt or blazer with black pants, and it’s a timeless combination.
A white sweater, black cords, and silver Mary Janes
Pair a white sweater with black cords. For an unexpected pop of shine, I’m wearing silver Mary Janes. When wearing a simple black and white outfit, look for ways to pull in interesting textures to increase visual interest. It’s hard to see, but this white sweater has a visible woven pattern. The silver shoes add an unexpected pop of shine that’s fun. Save this for nicer winter days when you’re comfortable going sockless.
Look 11: Wear a loose-fitting top and wide-leg jeans or pants
We’ve talked about how easy it is to make an outfit with wide leg pants and a fitted short sweater. But wear an oversized top or sweater with wide leg jeans or pants for an unexpected pairing. This creates a very laid-back feel. It’s important to define your waistline by front-tucking your shirt or sweater, wearing a belt, or pushing up your sleeves, which draws the eye to the waistline.
A Breton stripe sweater, wide leg cropped jeans, and taupe ankle boots
This drop-sleeve Breton stripe sweater has a very slouchy loose fit. I’m pairing it with wide-leg cropped white jeans that are loose in the hips and thighs. Front-tucking the sweater, wearing a belt, and pushing up the sleeves all help to define the waistline. And adding a belt bag also cuts the body across, visually breaking up the extra fabric.
Look 12: Wear sneakers with trousers or a dress
This unexpected pairing gained traction starting in 2010 when athleisure became a part of our lives. I’ve always loved the sporty juxtaposition of black Adidas tennis shoes with black trouser pants.
A denim jacket, graphic tee, black trouser pants, and black Adidas tennis shoes
My favorite style of sneakers with pants or a dress is a slim sneaker, but a running shoe can also work. There are so many fun sneakers out there to play with. Adidas sambas are having a moment right now. My black Adidas gazelles have been well-loved for the last six years.
When it comes to adopting winter trends, wear the ones you love and pass on the rest. Sprinkling in a few keeps your look fresh and current. Have fun experimenting with these outfit formulas!
I’m curious: which trends do you love lately? Leave a comment below.