I'm always searching for the new black. I'm looking for that quintessential color that changes seasonally and stands in for the sexy neutral in your outfit. This year, the new black is merlot! Last fall/winter, I was crazy for ox blood, it's very similar to merlot, but not the same. Merlot is closer to the purple spectrum. It's a little more feminine, less gothic-grunge. It's warm and inviting, classy and earthy; just like the wine it's named after. Best of all, its the perfect "black" for your wardrobe this season. 

Express at the St Johns Town Center has a great merlot top. Such a rich and sophisticated color looks amazing in a luxe button down. The Convertible Sleeve Portofino Shirt combines effortless chic in semi-sheer crepe. With a modernized, sexy deep V button neck, you can keep it formal with long sleeves or go casual with a rolled up option. Express calls this color Wild Orchid in their collection, although I see merlot tones for sure! I may have called merlot "the new black," but it looks divine with black, as well! 

Express Convertible Sleeve Portofino Shirt in Wild Orchid, $49.50 

For sweaters, Urban Outfitters has several great options in various shades of merlot. In the photo pictured below, 1 is the Kimchi Blue Open Stitch Cardigan, and probably the truest "merlot" option in the bunch. The deep purple-red shade of merlot in a lightweight, open stitch, airy design. Number 2 is almost a shade too close to red to be considered merlot, but it's close. I loved that it was paired with black in the sleeves, as I think merlot and black make a stunning companionship. The Lucca Couture Marl Sweater has an eye popping banded crew neck and sleeve detail which keeps it preppy-cool. My favorite option from Urban Outfitters is the Lucca Couture Dolman Open Front Cardigan and it just might be making a permanent spot in my wardrobe very shortly! I LOVE the dolman sleeves with their wide dropped armholes and the slouchy rounded collar just looks ready to keep me cozy and happy! 

1 Kimchi Blue Open Stitch Cardigan, dark purple, $49

2 Lucca Couture Marl Sweater, maroon, $69

3 Lucca Couture Dolmam Open Front Cardigan, dark purple, $69

In the world of accessories, BCBGMAXAZRIA has a luscious clutch in their Harlow Crocodile Clutch. Made of faux leather with a crocodile pattern, this clutch features an envelope style magnetic closure with metal accents. I love the idea of pairing a merlot statement clutch with your LBD (little black dress) this fall/winter. At at such a reasonable price, you can afford to use and abuse this bag well into New Year's! 

BCBGMAXAZRIA Harlow Crocodile Clutch, burgundy, $88

Mac Cosmetics has a rich merlot colored lipstick called Hang Up. Nothing beats the consistent color and smoothness of Mac lipstick and I know you won't be disappointed with this pick! Long wearing and creamy, this color will make any outfit glam! 

Mac Cosmetics Lipstick, Hang Up, $15

For an easy and casual way to introduce merlot into your closet, Lucky Brand has a nice option with their Sweater Back Thermal. Super casual, incredibly comfortable and easy to wear, this long sleeve shirt will keep you stylish and warm for your daytime errands! The sweater-styled back keeps it stylish. I am loving this as a casual top option this season! 

Lucky Brand Sweater Back Thermal, Potent Purple, $59.50