Dresses have had a good run, but tailored separates and knitwear are ready to eclipse them for fall in the bridge and contemporary markets, in a season marked by a quiet, sexy, easy elegance. The dress won’t disappear, however, as it’s a perennial favorite in the South.

This story first appeared in the March 13, 2008 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

“We are seeing a return to reassuring classics and simple, uniform dressing,” observed Nicki Gondell, principal of Trend House Inc. forecasting service in New York.

What’s key for Dallas? Dallas market observers and three national trend spotters — David Wolfe, creative director at The Doneger Group; Gregor Simmons, principal of Gregor Simmons Ltd. buying service, and Gondell — weighed in on these must-have for fall.

– Pencil skirts in different lengths and waists, including high waists.
– High-waisted pants, slim and full.
– Sharply tailored jackets.
– Shift and sack dresses, alone or layered.
– Knitted coats.
– Long cardigans over dresses.
– Aged denim with pocket embellishment — studs, embroidery, paint, zippers, crystals.
– Feminine blouses.
– Fluid, soft fabrics.
– Plaid
– Purplish red hues — eggplant, deep berry, maroon.
-Belts of all kinds.
– Scarves and mufflers.