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Accessories: Five Wardrobe Secrets to Help You Style Like a Pro

Ever wonder why some people always look ready for a photoshoot even when they wear jeans and a t-shirt? Psst! They know the secrets of accessorizing to take their outfit from ho-hum to hello there!

The right colour, shape, pattern, size and texture of accessories can accent your personal style and draw attention to your best features. The choices for accessories are endless – jewellery, belts, shoes, boots, handbags, hats, scarves, eyewear and even socks!

Use these five professional accessorizing tips to help you renew a weary wardrobe and fire up a fresh vibe without breaking your budget.

Start with Your Outfit

Think of your outfit as your backdrop. What’s the style? Is it classic, natural, dramatic, romantic or casual?

Consider other factors. Is the outfit a bold, bright colour or muted? Is it silky smooth or a textured knit? Does it have one solid colour or a busy pattern of stripes, checks or florals?

If your outfit is eye-catching, then count it as the statement piece and keep your accessories simple. Choose scaled-down items like small earrings, a delicate necklace, neutral-coloured shoes and a single-coloured bag.

On the flip side, if your outfit is monotone, try splashy accessories. Pick a multi-coloured scarf, a chunky necklace, a textured belt, or spectacular animal print heels.

Proportion is the Key

Consider the proportions and shape of your accessories to add balance to your outfit.

For example, if you’re wearing a bulky cardigan or a jacket with an oversized collar, lose the hefty necklace or voluminous scarf. Instead, select small, sleek accessories to balance your silhouette. Choose thin, dangling earrings, a couple of metallic bangles or neutral shoes.

Wearing a form-flattering black pencil skirt with a white button-down masculine shirt? Go wild!

Choose from the following:

  • large hoop or chandelier earrings

  • multiple layered chains

  • a substantial cocktail ring

  • a woven, textured handbag

  • and yes, knockout red heels!

Don’t Go Overboard

Just like eating too much chocolate, wearing a bazillion accessories is excessive.

French designer Coco Chanel, famously advised checking the mirror before leaving the house and removing at least one item. Likewise, a good rule of thumb is to keep accessories to one or two.

Select a patterned scarf and a silver watch or suede boots and vintage broach. Wearing ten rings, orange vinyl boots, and a big hair bow can lower your image and give the wrong impression.

Don’t be Matchy-Matchy

Gone are the days when you matched the colour of your handbag to your shoes. If all your accessories are the same colour or texture as the outfit, you can look decades older.

The same goes for jewellery. You don’t need to purchase a complete collection of necklace, earrings, bracelet and ring. It’s perfectly okay to mix gold, silver, and rose-coloured jewellery.

You add interest to your outfit when your accessories complement each other, so experiment with different colours, metals, patterns and textures for a chic fashion look.

Choosing Colours and Patterns

Interior decorators have this concept down pat. They know how to coordinate and mix different shades and patterns to create harmony and flow in a room.

The principles are the same for coordinating your accessories.

For example, if your basic outfit has a large floral pattern in green, blue and yellow, then select a scarf or handbag with a mini geometric, thin strip or small polka dot pattern that also pulls one of the colours found in the outfit.

Always consider your basic outfit first for colours and patterns.

Use Accessories to Flatter Your Figure

No matter your body type (pear, apple, hourglass, triangle, rectangle), a personal image stylist knows all the secrets to using accessories to draw attention to your best features and give you a balanced silhouette.

Let’s say you’re long-waisted, meaning you have a long torso and shorter legs. You have a good portion of space between your bust and waist, so wear a wide belt. Wearing pants? Choose shoes that are the same colour as your pants to add visual length to your legs.

Short-waisted is the opposite – short torso and long legs. Try a skinny belt that sits below your natural waistline. Choose long thin scarves to create a vertical line and pointed-toe shoes for an elongated look.

Final Fashion Thoughts

Accessories are a cost-effective way to elevate your wardrobe and enhance your personal style for any occasion.

Keep these five professional accessorizing secrets in mind to help you plan your outfit and look ultra-fashionable as you step out the door.


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