Wearing a kimono outfit in the autumn is a great way to style the pieces you think of as summer items for other times. Most of our kimonos are beautiful prints, so it’s fabulous to add them to your fall looks.
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Quote of the day: “Perhaps when we find ourselves wanting everything, it is because we are dangerously near to wanting nothing.” Sylvia Plath
One of my goals is to find ways to stretch our wardrobe so we don’t have to buy more and more all of the time. There are many ways to transform our summer pieces and Lesley is showcasing a casual fall bohemian look by wearing a kimono outfit.
Why is this smart? For one reason it adds lightness to our fall looks that tend to be darker and more muted. And secondly, you are shopping in your closet which is good for your wallet.
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You’ll want to see how Charlotte wore print pants for this idea, and I even shared many of the wonderful photos from the Boyce Thompson Arboretum in this post (as well as a handknit cardigan I wore).
Jeans: Levi~~ Kimono: Apt 9~~ Top: Chicos~~ Boots: Jambu– c/o~~ Purse: Target
Wearing a Kimono Outfit in the Fall
Even though most kimonos are very lightweight, they can still be worn for an autumn day. Think of them as decoration instead of providing warmth.
By layering them over a long sleeve top that is providing warmth, you are adding the finishing touch to the outfit. Basically, it is part of your accessories for the entire look.
Lesley wore this white print kimono over her jeans, long-sleeve tunic and chose ankle boots to finish it off.
If you need more warmth from your kimono, you could grab a wool poncho instead.
Insider tip: If your kimono seems overwhelming, I’ve showcased tricks to make it more fitted. Most of these would work with ponchos too.
Related post: Kimono over a dress for spring
Is a Kimono Bohemian?
We have showcased some bohemian looks in the past, and even if that isn’t your “style”, it’s fun to add some of the boho touches to our looks on occasion.
In fact, Lesley will tell you that she is a conservative and classic-style girl. Yet she does own quite a few kimonos as they are so pretty and functional.
Kimonos may be considered boho because they are loose and flowy. Many of them also have some embroidery detail on them.
Insider tip: You can always create a kimono out of a large scarf by tying the ends together or using clear elastics (found on Amazon here) to hold the ends together. This creates the sleeves of the kimono. Lesley showcased this here with her black and gold scarf.
Other bohemian details that we mixed with our style:
Wonderful Bohemian Style for Older Ladies with A Mix of Styles–Don’t think that women in their 80s can’t wear embroidery
How to Wear Bohemian Style for a Conservative Woman–Mixing preppy loafers with a little boho
My Boho Style for Women Over 50 With Dichotomy–2 options with ruffles and embroidery
Fun Accessories to Wear with a Kimono
Lesley’s outfit is a combination of burgundy and navy. Without the kimono, it might feel less intentional with two solid colors by themselves. That’s where accessories can make any outfit look more intentional and pulled together.
As I stated earlier, you could consider the kimono an accessory in this look. It’s not adding any warmth or coverage, but it is adding a beautiful design and print.
On top of that Lesley wore a long statement necklace and blue and silver earrings that incorporate the blue from the kimono.
The cognac tote is a wonderful neutral that plays well with the other colors in this look and is a great reminder that your shoes and purse do not have to match each other.
Insider tip: The advantage to a large tote like this is you can have everything you need with you. Yet, you can also have your smaller purse in it, and take that out to carry, so you don’t have to lug around such a big bag. This is something Lesley does a lot and calls the trick-bag layering (as seen in this short video).
Tunics and Kimonos
Lesley layered her print kimono over a knit, long sleeve tunic. While the kimono is longer than the tunic, I like how you can see the longer sleeves peeking out. You can also notice the tunic at the side when the slits in the kimono are opened up as we move in our daily life.
Insider tip: Even when you take photos of your outfit, you have to remember it’s a snapshot of the look. People see us in motion unlike in a photo. The takeaway is not to stress over everything that is trivial in an outfit. Maybe your bra strap will show occasionally or the kimono will move around.
Since a kimono is flowy, when a breeze comes, you can see the great details of the tunic, like the split hem and pockets.
What Kind of Jeans Should You Be Wearing with a Kimono Outfit?
There is no one right answer to this question, however, most of us would feel more comfortable with skinny or straight-leg jeans since the kimono tends to be flowy and loose.
However, I have experimented with wearing a loose tunic with loose culottes too, so you never know until you try different options.
For example, wearing boot-cut or flared jeans could be a great option because the flare of the jean could mimic the flowingness of the kimono and look great.
In fact, back in the day when “What Not to Wear” was popular and they even published a book (found on Amazon here), one of their suggestions for women with apple shapes was to have more flare on the bottom half to balance out the look. Since a kimono is flowy, you could extrapolate the same idea for wearing a kimono outfit.
Insider tip: We get used to seeing certain silhouettes. Its’ called the Mere-exposure effect (discussed on Wikipedia here). But don’t forget that doesn’t make it right or wrong. That’s why it’s good to be open to new styles and have a “never say never” attitude.
Ankle Boots and Jeans
I just think that ankle boots are the perfect footwear for the fall and winter months. This pair of wine-colored ankle boots were from our collaboration with Jambu last fall. In that post, Lesley styled them with straight-leg jeans and let the hem of the jeans hang over the booties more.
With this casual fall look wearing a kimono outfit, Lesley wore a pair of jeggings that are much more fitted down the calf and ankle. She still allowed the jeans to hang over the boot.
There are other options with skinny jeans like this and your ankle boots. You could cuff the jeans to show off the entire boot as I did with my boyfriend jeans.
Many times you can also tuck the jeans into the boots too.
Insider tip: We get too caught up in the “right” and “wrong” way to tuck or cuff our jeans. Trust me, it’s not something most people will notice for more than 2 seconds. I say try a couple of ways and go with what feels best for you. And spend your time on adding some fun accessories to bring the focus to the top half of your body.
And aren’t burgundy booties a great option for the fall and winter?? You could consider them like a red-brown and they just go with everything.
More Inspiration for Casual Fall Looks and Wearing a Kimono Outfit
Here are some other looks that can be used for inspiration for a casual fall boho look.
- You could always layer a long sleeve shirt under this and change out the flats for booties: Unlimited Ideas for Swoon-Worthy Outfits with Shades of Pink
- A kimono is the easiest way to add a topper to any jeans and t-shirt: Adding Tremendous Style for Jeans and a Tee with Color and a Kimono
- A poncho or shawl is basically a heavier weight kimono. The original models showed 3 different kinds of looks with our capes and ponchos: Capes and Ponchos for Dressy Occasions
Thank you for visiting my space on the internet. I like to showcase how it’s never too late to look great for women of any age, size, or working with any budget.
I feel I’m here to help move beyond the fashion rules of yesterday and evolve. Style and clothes are made to give you joy. Not cause us stress because we are worried about what others think.
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