Melissa Rivers' Best Tips For Acing The Evolution Of Quiet Luxury This Fall - Exclusive Interview

For those who like to stay up to date on the current fashion trends, going from summer to fall is the perfect time to refresh your look. But it can also be overwhelming (and pricey) if you feel pressure to overhaul your wardrobe each season. Fortunately, we got the advice of TV personality and fashion expert Melissa Rivers for the top fashion trends in fall 2023


Rivers is an award-winning TV host known for her interviews and her hit show "Fashion Police." Over her impressive career, she has also worked as an actor and executive producer and is a New York Times bestselling author of books, including "Lies My Mother Told Me: Tall Tales from a Short Woman" about her mother, Joan Rivers. Melissa now hosts a weekly podcast, "Melissa Rivers Group Text," where she and her guests discuss everything from pop culture to health and wellness to parenting. During our exclusive interview, Rivers shared the key items to invest in to nail the quiet luxury aesthetic we've seen on celebrities and the runway. She also gave us some tips for shopping your own closet and making affordable items look high-end so that you don't have to break the bank to feel stylish.


How the quiet luxury aesthetic is evolving this season

What do you predict will be the biggest fall trends this year?

We're still going to see the quiet luxury trends continue, but we're going to start to see a little bit more edge popping into it — a little bit more embellishment, not quite as pared down.


Do you feel like there'll be any surprising trends coming into that?

I think we're still going to see very luxurious fabrics but with some embellishment. If you look at all of the shows, you're already seeing [that it's] not so ... I keep going back to the word "pared down," but you're seeing more embellishments. You're seeing buttons. You're seeing a little glitter and sparkle coming back into things but still staying in that general zone, a little bit more oversized. But suddenly, we're seeing minis everywhere, too, so what the hell do I know?

I've also been seeing a lot of capes. The cape dress seems to be making a comeback. The oversized coat seems to be making a comeback. That's what I've been seeing, and a whole bunch of variations in the size of bags. We're getting a little bit over the bag that you could absolutely fit nothing into.


You think the tiny little hand purses are going out?

As someone who wears glasses, I certainly hope so.

Bringing fun into the quiet luxury trend

Are there any throwback trends that you think we'll be seeing pop back up?

Well, the classic button-down isn't going anywhere. We're seeing — at least from what I've been seeing — a little bit of the preppy style coming back. I've seen tons of polo shirts this whole summer, [and] the country club trend seems to be continuing. You can look at that for why everyone's suddenly needing the Adidas Samba sneakers.


What would you say are going to be the key aesthetics for Fall 2023?

With formal wear, we're going to see a little bit more romance, and we're going to continue on the whole luxury trend. It's going to be all about luxury fabrics.

For fall, what we're seeing coming is an evolution of ... I've used this term so many times that I'm nauseous by it — the quiet luxury. We're going to see an evolution of that. It's still going to be all about the luxury, all about ... It's clean. It is a little romantic at night, but not all lace and swirls and too many ruffles.

When you say luxury fabrics, are we talking about silks? What are going to be the big ones?

Silk, cashmere. I've been seeing quite a bit of lace, all those kinds. I was just looking at the Stella McCartney stuff, and as she's coming back, it's a little bit more bodycon without being like a sausage casing. There's a real elegance that we're still seeing. There's not a lot of logos.


You said it's a lot more pared down. What about as far as color and pattern? Is it more neutrals, or ...?

I still think we're going to start seeing ... We're still coming out of this very neutral, almost monochromatic phase with little pops of color in accessories or coats or shoes. We're getting a little more "fun" back. That's going to make the quiet luxury feel a little bit more modern.

That makes sense.

It's always an evolution. Coastal grandma comes back every summer. So much of it is dictated by the season.

The best items to refresh your wardrobe this fall

Are there any key items that you would recommend people purchase to refresh their wardrobe for fall?

Either red shoes or a red bag, a jacket with some color ... A way to add color is always through a colorful scarf if you don't want to break the bank. I am a big fan of — and I'm not sure that this is coming back; we saw a little of it last year — I love a good cuff bracelet.


You're not sure if that's coming back?

I'm not sure if it's coming back, but I'm always a fan of that. I actually just ordered one off Etsy ... Again, it's about taking it all and modernizing. If you're wearing all black and you have a great red bag, it's going to look fantastic. Or all black or with a red belt or gray. It's a time to start adding some color back.

What are the staple accessories or outerwear that you've been seeing coming up for this season?

We're still seeing the very beautifully cut traditional winter coat. Think Max Mara. That's the kind of thing that you can spend money on if you're buying it in a quiet color because it's never going to go away. But you can also go to an H&M — which I often do — and you can find a great fun coat and a color to mix in.


Melissa's advice for shopping Labor Day sales

What are some of the best Labor Day sales that you recommend people hit this year to try and get some of those things?

The thing is, with sales, peruse around to all your favorite websites. I saw a thing on Gap. For something higher-end, you go to NET-A-PORTER, and they always have sales. My biggest thing is just because it's on sale doesn't make you want it. I get into that thing. Do I really want it, [or is it only], "Oh, but it's on sale"?


What trend are you most excited to wear this fall?

I'm a big button-down and sweater girl, and the fact that it's actually going to be on trend makes me really happy. Just like everyone's suddenly wearing the white T-shirts last spring and this summer, I was able to shop my own closet.

Investing in staple wardrobe pieces

It is nice having the staples be very on trend right now.

Yes. I'm still seeing the drapier pants. I am taking some of my wider, overly drapey ones and having them taken in a little so they're not so overwhelming. I'm also a big believer in taking my basics and either putting a hem in, or changing the waistline, or letting a hem out. I'm a firm believer in that. I have a dress that has literally ... It's Oscar de la Renta. One of my very good dresses is now on its third incarnation.


Of slight adjustments to make it more on trend?

Yep. Slight adjustments to make it feel fresh.

That's smart. It's a lot more budget-friendly than going out and getting something new every time the style slightly changes.

Yes. My family's always been ... My godfather used to always say, "Weep once," meaning cry once, which is the first time you bought it, and you'll have it forever rather than buying a lot of not-so-good things that you're going to end up spending just as much on in the long run. With my "good" [pieces] ... I have a navy Stella McCartney suit that I've literally had for eight years, and we keep making adjustments to it. It went from very tailored to letting it all out and had it be a bit oversized, and we took it back in, and we cropped the pants a little, and last year, we let the pants down again. You keep doing tweaks until you literally can't do anymore.


That's amazing.

I actually just got it back from being tailored for the 150th time, and I looked at it, and I'm like, "When did I get this?" I'm like, "Oh my God. It's the same old suit." I also got a great suit this summer from J.Crew, this light blue linen. I was so excited, and I have a feeling — and I haven't looked — all that kind of stuff is going on sale now. So if you need a good suit for summer, which can also be worn as pants and a separate jacket, grab that now. That was a find. For those of us that aren't tall, they also have petite.

The secret to making low-budget items look luxurious

Are there any stores that you recommend people shop if they want to get good quality things that'll last, but they don't necessarily have the budget for big designer labels?

Nordstrom and Bloomingdale's are always solid, solid choices. They have all the different departments, so you can gauge what part you want to shop in ... The J.Crew quality has gone way back up again. Also, one of my big things is to have everything tailored. You can take an inexpensive garment and have it tailored to fit you, and it's going to look like you can add another zero on the end.


Right. Once it looks like it was made for you ...

It makes such a difference. It sounds so stupid, but even on my inexpensive stuff, I have it tailored — because I know, like my favorite linen J.Crew suit, that I can only wear it one more time. Luckily, I have an event to wear it to. I have to have all my jackets ... they do what's called lifting. They lift it because I'm very short-bodied, so the waist is always hitting at my hip, even though it might fit everywhere else. They literally lift it from the back, drop the armholes ... They take out fabric, and it makes it look like an incredibly expensive designer suit. It's worth the money. If you're going to spend money, spend it on a good tailor.


That's good advice. I like that.

Like I said, I've remade all my good clothes so many times. I put on one dress for an event, and my assistant who's been with our family for 35 years, Sabrina, said, "You can't wear that out anymore because we literally have almost ten years of photographs of you in that same dress." She's like, "You can wear it to private things, but you can't wear it ever again somewhere that you might be photographed."

That's a testament that you could keep making it work for that long.

Well, it's also a testament to quality. Again, I go back to my godfather — "Weep once." If you've got to invest in one good thing that you want forever coming into fall and winter: a beautiful traditional coat ... and a good fabric, a luxury fabric.

Keep up with Melissa Rivers' latest projects on her website and Instagram account.

This interview has been edited for clarity.