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Making fall fashions work on tropicalesque island

By Staff | Sep 3, 2009

Just because it’s sunny, hot and humid doesn’t mean islanders have to miss out on fall.

There are a variety of fall fashions available on the island to help get you in the mood and feel for this crisp, earthy twilight time of the year.

In the northern half the country it’s easy to get psyched for wearing sweaters, jumpers, leggings and yes – boots.

The tell-tale nip in the air and appearance of brilliant hued leaves almost lures one to buy a pair of rich leather boots and don a vibrant cardigan sweater.

However, on the still balmy islands, the idea of wearing anything more than a T-shirt, shorts and flip flops can seem a bit off kilter.

But have nor fear folks there will be milder weather on the horizon – just later in the season. Yes islanders there is a fall.

And when this much anticipated and hoped for coolness arrives this year’s fall fashion palate will provide a variety of choices to make your wardrobe fun, stylish and cozy.

Think soft tunics with tiny flowers, fringes, plaids, leggings, animal prints and dark rich colors like plum.

Though most of the local clothing shops will be getting their main lines of fall clothing around October – most have pieces to get you in the feel for the cooler season.

Susan Flinn, owner of C. Turtles located in the Tahitian Gardens shopping center, has an array of colorful scarves that will be once again popular this year. Scarves are a fun, inexpensive and easy way to dress for fall, Flinn said.

“You can change an entire outfit just by changing the scarf,” she said.

To save money and be versatile, Flinn carries a number of the popular “recession” dresses.

“It’s a two for one,” she said.

The dresses can be worn as either a skirt or boost it up higher and it becomes a dress. Pull a cardigan over the strapless “recession dress” and it becomes suitable for work or going out for the evening.

Flinn said the dresses are selling well.

And in a tribute to the 40th anniversary of the Woodstock concert and musical celebration in upstate NY, tie dyes and apparel and jewelry with the peace sign emblem are popular this season.

C. Turtles, Lucky Dog located on Periwinkle Way and Amy’s Something Special in the old Sanibel Shoppes on Tarpon Road all carry merchandise with the peace sign or Woodstock theme.

One way of bring the feel of fall to your wardrobe and still stay cool in the island heat is by snagging a pair of fun flip flops in autumnal hues and patterns.

Lucky Dog carries Jamie Kreitman flip flops with crystal flowers and peace signs affixed to the front. Prices are $62 for the peace sign flip flops and $74 for the flowery ones.

owner Carol Damico also carries some pretty beaded peace sign necklaces handmade by a friend in NY. For those looking to add some fall color to their wardrobe while keeping an islandesque feel check out Damico’s one-of-a kind semi-precious pendants. The necklaces feature a flamingo and a dragon fly in citrine and gold and brown tones. The pieces cost $275.

For a more modest price, Lucy Dog carries delicate, fun bracelets which are part of the Seasonal Whispers Mix for $20 each.

Damico is excited to see leggings and feminine floral prints making a show this fall – all harkening back to the fun, freeing hippie era.

“Femininity is really in,” she said.

The upscale Why Not shop in the Village Center will also be carrying a new fall line complete with soft, T-shirts – always a great island must have – in the eye-candy rich colors of plum and deep green, said co-owner Jennifer Chiaramonte.