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How to Style Culottes for Fall

blue-striped-gaucho-pants-ruffled-off-the-shoulder-top-1blue-striped-gaucho-pants-ruffled-off-the-shoulder-top-3blue-striped-gaucho-pants-ruffled-off-the-shoulder-top-8blue-striped-gaucho-pants-ruffled-off-the-shoulder-top-9 blue-striped-gaucho-pants-ruffled-off-the-shoulder-top-4blue-striped-gaucho-pants-ruffled-off-the-shoulder-top-7blue-striped-gaucho-pants-ruffled-off-the-shoulder-top-5blue-striped-gaucho-pants-ruffled-off-the-shoulder-top-10blue-striped-gaucho-pants-ruffled-off-the-shoulder-top-2Top: Boohoo // Pants: Alice + Olivia // Shoes: J.Crew (similar, lower-heel option here) // Brooches: vintage // Bag: Vintage // Bag Charms: Amazon // Sunglasses: Karen Walker via DITTO // Bracelet: Banana Republic // Rings: BaubleBar // Watch: Michael Kors

If you thought I was going to say stick a sweater on top and call it a day, you were wrong. You were very, very wrong. Yes, autumn heralds the advent of knitwear, but it also marks the beginning of open season on all things sparkly. And furry. And ruffly. Right?

I recently discovered these epic Alice + Olivia high-waisted culottes on major clearance at Nordstrom Rack. Admittedly, they are from the Spring season, but having admired them from the time I first spied them on the Style.com (RIP) presentation recap, I knew I had to pick them up and never let go. I floated out of the store—thanking my lucky shopping stars—determined to repurpose these charming umbrella-striped culottes for fall use.

My usual instinct is to pair a voluminous piece with a streamlined one, to balance out the silhouette. Here, however, I went full steam ahead and paired these pleated pants with an equally billowing top. I affectionately refer to it as my Puffy Shirt and I love it very much. Next step in fall-ifying this look? Add as much sparkle and lush texture as possible without looking gauche. That means silver cracked-leather pumps, a trio of vintage brooches and a sublime silver-and-gold box clutch all found at my very favorite local antique shop, and a cluster of furry pompoms for good measure.

Were my shoulders a little cold? Maybe, but sometimes you have to shiver a little to look good.