I am writing this in the summer, just after a fitting for my gorgeous new black cashmere coat, a design by Maria Pinto, one of Chicago’s exemplars of elegance. When I was in her atelier, it was 90 degrees outside, and she and I were discussing how we must think about the seasons six months to a year ahead of most people. By the time the fall fashion shows are over in March, I have already decided what I am going to wear later in the year, just as other women are taking off their layers and slipping into filmy summer dresses. Despite the heat, being fitted for the coat made me realize that I was so looking forward to fall. Designers have made it nearly impossible to choose from all the stunning looks that came down the runways. Every designer has his own aesthetic, but there were several major trends for the upcoming season. One of the biggest was the dominance of color-not just a hint here and a splash there, but full-on mixtures of intense color, as shown in Bold Statements. I was also pleased to see novel takes on fabrics. Nearly every designer, from Prada to Givenchy, showed imagination in the use of fabrics-innovations that introduced couture elements to ready-to-wear pieces, as seen in Special Effects. And finally, The New Sophisticates makes it clear that the chunky layers of last year have been replaced by clothes with a hint of 1940s glamour and the sophisticated chic of 1970s Yves Saint Laurent. Although I have had fall on my mind for the past few months as I was putting this issue together, I was attending summer events in wispy silk dresses, like the one on this page-a design by Chicago’s Basia Frossard. I love wearing barely-there fabrics, but today I had a taste of what’s to come-luxurious fabrics for fall. Of course, just as I am beginning to wear those long-awaited designs, I will be thinking about next spring.

Photography by Megan Lovejoy

Stacey Jones, Fashion Editor