Any fashionista knows that accessorizing her outfit is an absolute must. It’s amazing how much something as simple as a hat, necklace, scarf, or hair clip can impact a look. That’s why, in this article, we have some ideas for types of accessories to try out, along with 10 tips for accessorizing your outfit. With these ideas in mind, you’ll be well on your way to looking like a true fashion icon.
Types of accessories
There are so many accessories to choose from, and what works for other people might not work for you. Some people swear by a structured handbag to elevate their outfits, while others love the laid back vibe of mismatched necklaces and rings. Here are some of the key categories of accessories; have a think about which ones you might like to try out.
Many women find that adding necklaces, earrings, bracelets, or rings to an outfit is a great way to look a little more feminine and put together. There are so many beautiful types of jewelry to choose from, and each will convey a different mood. For a professional look, go for small gold, silver, or pearl earrings. If you’d like to be more casual, fun pendant necklaces and hoop earrings look great with almost any outfit.
Bags aren’t just practical – they can also help you to accessorize your outfit. This season, big tote bags are very on trend, especially when they feature an interesting material or print. For more formal occasions, you can never go wrong with a small clutch. It’s usually a good idea to have at least three or four handbags in your collection, so you can switch it up depending on the event you’re heading to.
What’s the easiest way to look a little more glam in under 10 seconds? Putting on an elegant pair of sunglasses, of course. This accessory is such a simple way to elevate a look and look more classy and mysterious. With that said, not all sunglasses have the same effect on everyone. You can experiment with Aviators, as well as square, round, cat eye, and oversized styles to see what works best for you.
Hats come in such a wide range of styles that it’s hard to summarize them all! If you’re going for an elegant look, consider wearing a beret or a wide brim hat made from a fabric such as felt. For a summery style, straw sun hats and bucket hats are cute and useful for keeping you safe from the sun.
If you live in a cold climate, winter accessories can be a great way to add some flair to your look while staying cozy. Choose scarves, hats, and gloves in high quality materials, such as cashmere or mohair. If you’re wearing a solid colored coat and pants, patterned winter accessories can help add dimension to your outfit.
When you’re doing your hair, why not top it off with a fun accessory? Claw clips have been very popular over the last couple of years, and are a great way to look effortlessly chic. Brightly colored barrettes, scrunchies, and headbands have a fun ‘90s charm. Or, you could opt for a glamorous gold or gemstone hairpiece.
A belt is such a practical accessory, as it can totally change the lines of your outfit. By drawing in the fabric at your waistline, you’ll be defining this area of your body and this often makes you look more put together and dressed up. Whether you choose a wide or thin belt will depend on your personal style. You could also look for one with an interesting buckle or in a fun color.
These days, most people just pull out their phone to tell the time, which means that watches are a unique and slightly old-school accessory. Watches come in a wide range of styles, from modern FitBits and Apple Watches to vintage Princess Diana-inspired timepieces. Many people like to wear their watch at work as it looks very smart and professional – especially when paired with a blazer and a fresh set of nails.
Tips for accessorizing your outfit
1. Choose a signature piece
Trying to add the perfect combination of accessories to every outfit you pick out can be a bit overwhelming. Many people like to find one or two accessories that they really love and can wear with almost anything they own. Your signature piece could be something like stud earrings, your favorite chain necklace, or a lovely designer handbag. Something fairly minimalist tends to be best, so it will work with a wide range of outfits.
2. Think about how each accessory changes your look
One of the best things about accessories is how significantly they can impact an outfit’s look and mood. It’s important that you think about your favorite bags, hats, jewelry, and other accessories to figure out what they bring to an outfit.
For instance, you may realize that your cat-eye sunglasses always add some vintage flair to your look. Or, you might notice that people tell you you’re looking very professional whenever you wear your favorite watch. Once you understand what your accessories do for you, you’ll be able to use them more intentionally.
3. Focus on what you want to bring attention to
Just as you can think about how your accessories change the mood of your look, it’s also worth thinking about what they draw people’s eyes to. Again, you can use this information intentionally. A beret or barrette will draw attention towards your face. Rings, bracelets, and watches will bring the gaze to your hands. And if you want to accentuate your waist, bring your outfit together with a trendy belt.
4. Choose a focal point for your outfit
Most of the time, an outfit has one item that’s the star of the show. This could be a bold accessory, such as a statement necklace, or an item of clothing, like a patterned top. Once you’ve chosen your focal point, you can pick out other clothes and accessories to complement it. For instance, if you go for big gold and obsidian dangle earrings as your outfit’s centerpiece, you may decide to add a few subtle gold rings as a finishing touch.
5. Pair bold outfits with neutral accessories, and vice versa
This is an easy rule you can use to make sure your outfit looks balanced. If you’re wearing a bold, patterned jumpsuit, stick to accessories like simple hoop earrings and classic sunglasses. On the other hand, if you’d like to show off your most eye-catching necklace, a simple all-black outfit will always look fantastic and let the piece of jewelry shine.
6. Know when to pare it back
You’ve probably heard the Coco Chanel quote: “before you leave the house, look in the mirror and take one thing off”. This is one of the most commonly quoted tips for accessorizing your outfit. Sure, it’s not a hard and fast rule, but the idea behind it is just that less is often more. Don’t feel like you need to wear all your favorite accessories at the same time. Sometimes, it’s best to keep things simple so one or two pieces can enjoy the spotlight.
7. Don’t focus too much on the price tag
When you’re buying new accessories, don’t forget that just because something costs a lot, it doesn’t always mean it will be of high quality. Do your research and make sure the piece you’re considering is likely to hold up for a long time. Look carefully at the material, stitching, and reviews before making any big purchases. If you’re hesitant to spend too much on designer pieces, you can also check out boutiques and second hand stores.
8. Buy accessories that will go with a range of outfits
Sometimes, you’ll find yourself shopping for the perfect necklace to go with the evening gown that you’ve picked out for a special event. While that’s perfectly fine, try to buy versatile accessories as often as you can. When you choose earrings or sunglasses that go with almost any look, you’ll get far more wear out of them. Having staple accessories will also help you to form a signature style.
9. Challenge yourself to wear accessories every day
If you’re not really in the habit of wearing accessories, it can be hard to know where to start. You could try setting yourself a challenge to wear one accessory (or two, or three) every day for a month. If you don’t own any you like, try buying three to five simple accessories to help you get started – perhaps some jewelry, sunglasses, a belt, a hat, and a new handbag.
This challenge is a great way to experiment with accessorizing your outfits. It will also help you get to know what items you feel most confident wearing. By the end of the month, you’re sure to have a better idea of which pieces you want to add to your permanent rotation.
10. Don’t always follow the rules
This article is full of tips for accessorizing your outfit, but that doesn’t mean you always have to stick to them! Successful accessorizing is often about daring to be bold and not being afraid to break the rules. Don’t worry about things you might hear, like “don’t mix metals” or “don’t wear more than one pattern at a time”. If you’re confident in your outfit, your positive energy will shine through and make you look amazing!