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When It Comes to Your Wardrobe, the End of Summer Doesn't Have to Mean the End of Color

Here's how to introduce bold hues into your fall looks.
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It's been warm enough in New York City post-Labor Day to opt for swimwear over actual clothing, which can make all the "summer's over" talk feel a little premature. Ice cream still sounds like the ideal treat! The air-conditioner-less residents of the city still lament their fates! But whether it seems real right now, the fact of the matter is that fall is coming in earnest — pumpkin spice lattes and all.

But if the thought of retiring the bright sundresses to the back of your closet and leaving nothing but black and navy wool in their wake depresses you, never fear: your fall wardrobe need not be a gradual fade to the gray of winter. Introducing unexpected colors into your autumn outfit rotation is a great way to keep yourself feeling bright as the days begin to shorten.

Fire-engine red, which can feel predictable once the holidays roll around, looks punchy for autumn dressing — and makes for great 'grams once the leaves change to the same hue. Pair these flared pants and a mock-neck sweater from Theory in the same shade of statement-making red to create a monochrome look that reads as one chic jumpsuit. Slip into some block-heel Acne boots and minimal dangly earrings like these from Jil Sander to class the look up or throw your patch-covered denim jacket over your shoulders to dress it down.

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A good way to make sure you get your daily dose of fall color is with statement outerwear. This dusty rose coat from Theory in a shade reminiscent of the very on-trend "Tumblr pink" adds just the right touch of whimsy to any look, while a classic style like a trench in luxe yellow leather is both fun and sophisticated. Wear it with high-waisted jeans, a pleated metallic midi-skirt or a fitted turtleneck dress like to elevate even the most simple of ensembles.

Don't be afraid to start small: A bubblegum calf-hair belt cinched around the waist of a dark maxi skirt (try this inspired satin version from The Row) may be all you need to banish the goodbye-summer blues. Mixing hints of color with neutrals — like tawny caramel leather, blue-gray suede and olive green crepe — is a good way to get into the mood of the season while adding a fresh touch.

So when you find yourself staring blankly inside of your closet this fall, remember: Just because you're bidding summer adieu doesn't mean you have to say goodbye to the colors that make you feel bright.