Madewell's Kin Ying Lee on Fall's Biggest Trends and How to Wear Them

by Meredith Stebbins, Birchbox

No other season makes us want to revamp our closet quite like fall. As much as we'd love to spend our entire paychecks on new pieces, silly things like rent and bills get in the way. That's why we called on Madewell's lead designer, Kin Ying Lee, to help us decide what we should invest in. Here's what she had to say about the items (and products!) you need to own this season.

Madewell's Head Designer Kin Ying LeeMadewell's Head Designer Kin Ying Lee
Madewell lead designer Kin Ying Lee keeps her look cute and casual.

Birchbox: What's the one fall fashion trend everyone should try?

Lee: An animal print sweater is pretty irresistible, and so perfect for chilly fall days. Ours has a pyramid of sheep on it (and they're wearing socks, too!).

Related: Top 10 Beauty and Style Trends for Fall

BB: What jeans will you be living in this fall?

Lee: I can't wait to wear our Skinny Skinny High Riser Jeans in black. You can wear them with everything and they're so, so slimming, which is a bonus.

BB: What are the top three staples every woman should have in her wardrobe right now?

Lee: First, a seriously great pair of slim jeans like our Skinny Skinny or Skinny Skinny High Riser. Second, something bold like a bright silk blouse, patterned sweater, or colorful bag. It adds a little excitement to your everyday. Third, a pair of our Sidewalk Skimmers. Flats are always in style and ours come in rich colors and patterns.

Related: 5 Fashion Must-Haves For Fall Video

BB: What is your current favorite lip color?

Lee: Bright tomato red. It just makes me feel happy.

BB: Denim on denim is a big trend right now. What are some pointers for pulling it off?

Lee: Double denim is one of my favorite looks, but it's all about how you play with proportion. For example, always pair an oversize chambray shirt with skinny jeans. Or pair your slouchy boy jeans with a shrunken denim shirt or jean jacket.

BB: What are the hottest colorblocking combos for fall?

Lee: I love mixing similar hues of color together, like bright cobalt blue mixed with purple and emerald green. They look amazing together.

BB: Statement socks with boots are big right now. What are some dos and some don'ts?

Lee: Do let leopard print, fairisle, or dotted pairs peek out from your tomboy ankle boots. Don't wear your holey socks from last year!

BB: What are some key fall accessories?

Lee: Ankle boots in all shapes and colors. I'm especially obsessed with our white haircalf Old Town Boot.

What are some easy ways to mix and match patterns?

Lee: It's always good to remember that the prints and patterns you mix don't have to be bold and bright. Start with one strong print and pair it with something subtle like polka dots or stripes that are in the same color family.

BB: Madewell's predictions for this season's coolest polish colors?

Lee: Dark red and shades of indigo.

Related: 5 Nail Colors You Need This Fall: Mani Monday

BB: What are a couple of print patterns worth investing in?

Lee: One bold floral print (ours are inspired by vintage wallpaper) and a fun polka dot.

BB: You're going on a trip and you can only pack one outfit: what is it?

Lee: It depends on where I'm going. But if I had to pack only one outfit, it would be black Skinny Skinny Jeans, a striped tee, a bright cardigan, a timeless trench, a rich leather satchel, and our leopard print Sidewalk Skimmers.

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