Accessories are great in a way that it can significantly elevate my look even without adding the usual effort to make myself aesthetically pleasing like applying layers of foundation and experimenting with different shades of eye shadows, well you get what I mean. But in the same way, as it can make my look absolutely stunning if I wind up with the wrong choice of accessories can look horribly drab and my supposedly elevated look can plummet just as easily. It’s safe to say that accessories can indeed make or break my overall look.
Case in point was when I was asked to be the maid of honor at my cousin’s wedding. I believed in my taste don’t get me wrong. I have been wearing accessories ever since I learned how to differentiate shapes and colors. But what I failed to foresee at that time was how my accessories would look if paired them with a long and elegant bright pink dress. I know how to mix and match accessories when I’m wearing my usual casual weekend ensembles or during my corporate weekday wear but with a formal wear, a long gown at that? That was my mistake. I didn’t take the initiative to do some research let alone ask my friends for their opinion I just went ahead with what I thought would look good without giving it much thought only to end up in deep remorse.
I, of course, became the talk of the town not because I looked good but because I looked ridiculous. Besides the fact that I had a loose-fitting gown what made me look worse was the set of accessories I wore at the wedding. It was hideous and there were a handful of photographs that served as mementos to remind me of my stupidity and my taste, or the lack thereof.
It was a tad late when I realized that choosing fashion accessories to match an outfit also means you need to look at the style of the accessories, the occasion (something I didn’t think about at my cousin’s wedding), the scale and the color.
1. The Style
Did you know that accessories define our fashion style? I can turn a boring plain white t-shirt and a pair of acid-wash tattered jeans to look amazing as long as I pair it with the right shoes, handbag, and jewelry accessories. I can even transform a black knee-length dress to look absolutely stunning by finding the perfect accessories. Here are some examples of accessory types to complement my fashion style:
Classic accessories: Examples of classic accessories include a pair of diamond-studded earrings, a pair of white pearls, classic black pumps a leather clutch and a silk scarf.
Glamorous accessories: Examples of glamorous accessories include an oversized cocktail ring, a crystal-encrusted clutch, a pair of sparkly chandelier earrings, high heels, a bib necklace and a pair of huge sunglasses. If it’s a night event, of course, I’ll have to edit out the sunglasses unless I’d want people to think I’m blind then might as well add a cane.
Playful accessories: Examples of playful accessories include headbands, a thin belt, bright colored ballet flats, a hobo bag and a set of chunky jewelry.
Edgy accessories: Examples of edgy accessories include a choker necklace, pair of black leather boots, a studded handbag, and a cuff bracelet.
Workday accessories: Examples of workday accessories include a classic design watch, a big satchel or perhaps a shoulder bag, a fine necklace and a pair of kitten heels.
Casual accessories: Examples of casual accessories are a pair of Wayfarer sunglasses, big floppy hats, a candy-colored watch, colorful bracelets, a cross-body bag and a pair of knee-high boots or if the weather’s too hot I can opt for a pair of espadrille sandals.
2. The Color
Yes, color is very important because if I don’t get this right I’ll end up looking like a circus clown (just like I did). If my dress or my gown or let’s say my overall look is in the shades of black, white or neutral then I can accessorize with any color because it will still make me look coordinated and at the same time sophisticatedly stylish. But if I am out wearing a colorful outfit I just make sure that the colors of the fashion accessories I choose won’t clash with my clothes otherwise again, I’ll look like a trying hard buffoon.
It all boils down to the color wheel. If you I am not sure with colors I get a printable color wheel or better yet save a picture of a color wheel on my phone so I can refer to it from time to time. The primary colors of the color wheel are yellow, red and blue. The secondary colors of the color wheel are the colors that result from combining two types of primary colors take for example if you combine yellow with red you’ll get an orange shade.
If you notice, the primary and secondary colors are juxtaposed on the color wheel, which means the two types are actually akin to each other. And both colors blend well together if they are matched on the same level of darkness or lightness.
But if I really want to create a fashion statement I can freely opt for mixing both primary and secondary colors but I make sure that they are opposite to each other on the color wheel. When I choose to pair these colors I’m choosing to be adventurous and bold. If I don’t get the colors right though I’ll run the risk of looking like a complete fashion disaster. So I choose colors that are opposite of each other. I avoid mixing green with red unless is Christmas then that’s perfectly understandable. If you really want to get out of my usual color scheme I can experiment with different shades to find out which colors work best for me. But as a rule of thumb, I avoid using three different colors in my overall look unless it’s okay for me to look like a Christmas tree.
3. The Scale
The scale of my accessories is also just as important as the color. If my outfit involves a lot of patterns then it would be best if I go for the simple accessories. I keep in mind that if I blend patterned clothes with printed jewelry I’ll be a definite eye sore and if I’m aiming to look sophisticated and classy, I don’t even think about it because combining patterned prints with patterned jewelry will only make me look tacky. The same holds true for embroidered, embellished, sequined and ruffled garments. I can wear modest accessories if I want to emphasize and highlight my outfit.
Aside from the shape and the scale of my handbag is also very crucial. I do not forget to assess my body type to what I am wearing. Women who are slender and tall would look good with short and slouchy bags like clutches and hobos. Short women should by all means avoid gargantuan satchels as the size of these bags may overwhelm their petite frames. Petite women should also avoid handbags that have long straps. Bigger women or women whose bodies are shaped like an hour-glass will look absolutely amazing with medium sized handbags or box-type handbags as this style offsets their curves.
As you might have known by now, accessories have the power to change my outfit from looking fabulous to looking hideous. I can change different looks by carefully choosing my accessories.