Watch CBS News

Ask A Pittsburgh Expert: Preparing For Fall Fashion

Shopping & Style Flea Market, Jewelry
Photo Credit:

Kiya Tomlin is a Pittsburgh-based designer and creator of the internationally distributed brand, Uptown Sweats by Kiya Tomlin. She has 20 years of experience in custom design, and Kiya transfers her understanding of comfort and fit to the ready-to-wear world of leisurewear. Kiya's ever-growing collection of "re-imagined sweat suits for the modern woman" perfectly embodies the concept of leisurewear with an uptown flair. At her boutique in Pittsburgh's East End, Kiya personally styles and fits each customer and provides complimentary alterations as needed.

Kiya Tomlin, Pittsburgh
5983 Broad St.
Pittsburgh, PA 15206
(412) 361- 2100

Since grade school, Kiya Tomlin has been designing and manufacturing clothes. In the spring of 2015, Kiya invited Pittsburgh-based designer, Sandra Cadavid to offer her full line of leather handbags and jewelry as a compliment to the Uptown fashions. Working together, they inspire women to combine everyday comfort with catwalk glamour. Kiya strives to improve the quality of life of today's modern woman by creating clothes that are comfortable, stylish, versatile  and easy to care for.

Experiment With Color

Fall is usually characterized by the same neutral color pallet- navy, fatigue, taupe and merlot. These colors are great as they follow our basics to last year, but they can start to seem dull and predictable over time. To keep these staples from feeling stale, spice them up with fresh seasonal color pairings. An unexpected pop of color will give them new life. Try some of these combinations:

  • Pair navy with sky blue, blush or forest green.
  • Couple fatigue with watermelon pink, midnight blue or gold.
  • Accent taupe with citrine, garnet or mauve.
  • Match merlot with sky blue, buff or black.

Add A Woman's Touch

Menswear inspired fashions are another fall favorite -- pinstripe suiting, tweed, tailored suits. Unisex casual and streetwear fashions have been particularly "in" the last few seasons as well. For a modern spin on this predictable trend, add a subtle, ladylike detail. For example, wear a button down dress shirt and trousers with a wide corset belt; substitute the trousers from a menswear tailored suit with a matching mini skirt, or pair a lace blouse with a blazer or man-tailored trousers.

Be You

Fashion is fun, but it's also a great way to self-brand. Always wear one standout piece that reflects your individual fashion personality. Whether it's a special piece of jewelry, an over-sized accessory or a uniquely cut or crafted article of clothing, always try to incorporate one statement piece that brings you joy. Statement chokers are particularly eye-catching this season.

Related: Best Shops For Custom Jewelry In Pittsburgh

Comfort Inspires Confidence

Confidence is the intangible aspect that makes a woman truly beautiful. Clothes that you can move comfortably in will allow you to live your best life and let your inner life shine. Avoid clothing that requires you to constantly "suck in," tug or adjust. This detracts from all your positive attributes, both inside and out. Great fashion begins beneath the clothes, and be sure to invest in the proper style and fit undergarments. They will most likely differ from outfit to outfit, so be sure to have a sufficient assortment. The Pittsburgh weather in the fall can be inconsistent, and layering is the key.

Ready-To-Wear Doesn't Really Mean "Ready To Wear"

The items that are bought from the store appear to be fully assembled, finished garments. But, for most women, they are not. Buying clothes is actually a multi-step process. Understand what a "good fit" is, and learn to select styles according to the fit, not the size tag. Next, find a good alterations specialist that can customize the fit even further to your unique figure. This is especially important for fall wardrobes where the fabrics tend to be bulkier, the silhouettes more structured and fitted and the price tags are higher. Choosing quality-made garments and having them custom fit is the best way to keep your clothes lasting from year to year, in both style and fit.

Related:  Best Outdoor Art In Pittsburgh

Gerry Cernicky is a retired health and physical education teacher with 36 years of experience. He is a former teacher of the year and a sports writer for the Vandergrift News. He delivers podcasts, and maintains a website and blog. He currently resides in Pittsburgh. His work can be found at

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.