Special Issue: 12 Recommendations to Get Into Fall

Plus, my fall preview.

Surprise! This is a special edition of Morning Person, in celebration of fall (with all the same obsessively-curated recommendations!).

Wayyy back in April, high on the excitement of being admitted to grad school, I turned to my husband Jonah and declared, “I’m going to lean into fall this year.He looked at me like I was nuts (…fair), but let me explain: Fall is often all about speeding up—school starts, work gets busier—but it’s also the best time to slow down, to attune yourself to the beauty of the changing seasons, and embrace indoor activities. So, grab your favorite hot beverage, get cozy, and lean into fall with me:

Embrace the Season: Use this fall foliage map for leaf-peeping, then find apple orchards in your area via this directory. Consider researching what’s in season in your area, then purchase them from your local farmers’ market!

Maggie Rogers’ B Side Album: Last year, Maggie Rogers treated us to 15 songs that she’d recorded, but never released. They’re universally ethereal and calming—the kind of thing to put on for a quiet evening. (Psst, I made you a short fall playlist in case you’re looking for more! I’ve also been playing a lot of Allison Ponthier, especially this song.) [I rediscovered this Maggie Rogers album via Anne Helen Petersen’s recent “Links” edition of her newsletter! Thank you!]

Loud and Playful Accessories: Ochre, army green, and navy are the official sponsors of fall, which makes it the ideal time to opt for loud, contrasting accessories (IMHO). I love these New York-themed huggies, two-toned hair claws, playful floral options and these soda tab-inspired earrings from WOC-owned BonBonWhims, and colorful hoops from Alison Lou.

Fall Candles: I love these scentless beeswax candles, but there are also more great fall candles here and here, and a holiday candle here if you’re antsy for December.

Homemade stroopwafels and coffee: The first thing you need to know about making stroopwafels—I like this recipe—is that it requires what is essentially a mini waffle maker (this one is only $10!). The second thing is that they’re best served perched on top of a mug of coffee, like so. Take ten minutes on a random morning to fully luxuriate in the routine: Let the steam from the coffee warm your treat and sip, before diving into your day.

Book clubs: The book club I formed this summer is hanging on by a thread, but I feel like fall is our moment because what is better than discussing books when it’s cold outside? Consider using this site as your guide (with a group or solo!), or find your next book from this NYT column. And, if magazines are more your thing, consider this.

Jane Austen Marathon: I know this is basic, but there is nothing like watching mist float over an English hillside to get all the cozy feels. The three best Austen movies are as follow: Sense and Sensibility (Kate Winslet! Hugh Grant! Emma Thompson! Alan Rickman!), Emma (I love GP, but the 2020 version with Anya Taylor‑Joy did not get enough attention), and Pride and Prejudice (because “Liz on Top of the World” and that one gazebo scene).

Back-to-School Shows: Even if you’re not heading to class, you can visit school through two of my favorite shows right now, “Sex Education” (Season 3 recently came out.) and “The Chair,” which I recommended here.

Penny Loafers with Socks: I recently bought these Penny Loafers from J.Crew (don’t buy them full price, they go on sale for 30% off all the time) with the intention of wearing them with glittery socks and vintage jeans. I’ll admit that J.Crew’s marketing really sealed the deal for me, with this style guide.

Blend No. 67 from Smith: I recently fell in love with this caffeine-free tea, which blends rose, chamomile, and rooibos (which keeps it grounded from tasting too perfumey). I buy it loose and keep it in a Weck canning jar, which looks so pretty in my open kitchen shelves.

Updated Zoom Backgrounds: If you’re working from home, there’s no easier time to completely revamp your office for fall. I love this collection of Zoom backgrounds in fall colors from illustrator Pam Wishbow.

Interior Design: It’s been nearly a decade since I studied abroad in Copenhagen, but Scandinavians know a thing or two about making a home hyggelit for fall. I’ve been scoping out beautiful accessories, like this gorgeous floor vase, this mirror, and these borsilicate glasses for making the indoors that much more appealing.

I generally don’t love “Fall Previews” because what a tease! So there will not be a quiz on this later, and I’ll be sharing recs closer to their release date, but here are a few movies I’m excited to see coming down the October to December pipeline.

Diana: The Musical. Oct. 1, Netflix. While the Broadway music was still in previews when the pandemic shut it down, a filmed version of the show was created for Netflix.

Maternal. Oct. 1, Theaters: A nun takes care of a young teenage girl.

The Guilty. Oct. 1, Netflix: A remake of the 2018 Danish film, with Jake Gyllenhaal as a 911 operator.

Lamb. Oct. 8, Theaters. A strange Icelandic film that was a favorite at Cannes. I’m told it’s best to go into it knowing nothing sooo… that’s all you’re getting!

Bergman Island. Oct. 15, Theaters. A couple moves into Ingmar Bergman’s home in Sweden, starring Mia Wasikowska.

Dune. Oct. 22, Theaters and HBO Max. A film adaptation of arguably the greatest sci-fi book of all time, starring Oscar Isaac, Zendaya, and Timothée Chalamet.

The French Dispatch. Oct. 22, Theaters: Wes Anderson’s latest film is set in France and pays homage to “The New Yorker.”

Passing. Oct. 22, Theaters. A highly anticipated adaptation of Nella Larsen’s 1920s novel about a Black woman “passing” as white—read the novel first, it’s brilliant and feels very contemporary.

Finch. Nov. 5, Apple TV+. Tom Hanks, as a robotics engineer, in a post-apocalyptic world, with only his dog as his companion. (Sooo, my dream movie??)

Julia. Nov. 5, Theaters. The documentary filmmakers behind RBG turn their lens toward Julia Child.

Spencer. Nov. 5, Theaters. Kristen Stewart plays Princess Diana, in this feature from Chilean director Pablo Larraian (he also directed Jackie).

King Richard. Nov. 5, Theaters. Will Smith stars as Venus and Serena Williams’ father.

Tick, Tick... Boom!. Nov. 10, Netflix. Andrew Garfield plays the creator of the musical Rent in a movie directed by Lin-Manuel Miranda.

House of Gucci. Nov. 11, Theaters. Ridley Scott’s film stars Adam Driver as the heir to Gucci, whose ex-wife (Lady Gaga) orders him murdered.

Boiling Point. Nov. 19, Theaters. A hectic night at a London restaurant, portrayed as a single long shot.

The Humans. Nov. 24, Theaters. Based on a popular play, about an everyday family at Thanksgiving, starring Beanie Feldstein and Amy Schumer.

Try Harder! Dec. 3, Theaters. A documentary about students at a competitive SF high school in the thick of the college admissions process.

West Side Story. Dec. 10, Theaters. Sharks! Jets! Steven Spielberg! The original is one of my all-time favorite movies—I can’t wait for Spielberg’s undoubtably cinematic take.

The Novice. Dec. 17, Theaters. A college freshman pursues perfection on her college rowing team.

Don’t Look Up. Dec. 24, Netflix. Leondardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Lawrence star in this satire, from the director of The Big Short, about astronomers trying to warn the world about a deadly comet.

The Lost Daughter. Dec. 31, Netflix. Maggie Gyllenhaal’s directorial debut adapts Elena Ferrante’s novel.

Three takes on homemade pumpkin pie spices for baking (and lattes…). These green gingham sheets are inspiring me to design our guest room, and I’m intrigued by this spiritless bourbon-inspired drink.