Do you have the essential fashion accessories for your style? Let’s find out!
Are you using your fashion accessories?
We all love a good handbag, or possibly have a shoe obsession or enough jewelry to never wear the same piece twice!
You have a glamorous style personality for only selecting and wearing the best accessories out there to pair with your outfits.
But how many of us are really putting our fashion accessories to work every day?
Stylish women everywhere often have their favorite wardrobe staples that are classic and worn repeatedly.
Accessories change the look of these wardrobe staples by adding color, a theme or a new way to wear the staples.
There are 10 essential fashion accessories every woman should own that can transform an ordinary outfit into an extraordinary one.
For example, let’s say you have a busy day and evening. Here is how you can use fashion accessories to transform your outfit three times.
How to accessorize
You can put on a favorite little dress in the morning and style it with sunglasses, a hat perhaps, a cross-body bag and some flats to run around in.
You can transition this look into the afternoon by removing the hat and adding a shawl, scarf or wrap.
Switch to heels, maybe some sheer stockings or tights and a clutch and statement jewelry for the evening and you’ve just transformed one simple dress into 3 looks!
Fore more inspiration take a look at this piece on 20 fashion accessories to try for fall 2019.
What did Coco Chanel say about fashion accessories?
One of our favorite style icons Coco Chanel (portrait above by Boris Lipnitzki) once said: “Before you leave the house, look in the mirror and remove one accessory.”
However, this was at a time where women were used to accessorizing. My experience is that many women don’t use any accessories at all or too few.
We love Coco but we are changing her advice to:
Before you leave the house, look in the mirror and ADD one accessory.
I also love what Oscar de la Renta said about fashion accessories. His advice was:
“A woman makes an outfit her own with accessories.”
Here are 10 essential fashion accessories you should have in your closet to take his advice and create your own, signature style.
Handbags are often a status symbol that express your personality instantly. What is your personal style?
Are you a structured kind of woman, or do you like to sport a little boho style or some vintage chic?
Read our article on the 10 best designer handbags you can definitely afford to get your hands on a new piece.
Monika (above) adds a pop of color to her outfit with her yellow bag. Here is a similar yellow satchel bag.
Regardless of what you like, go for it and don’t worry so much about whether or not your handbag matches your look.
Fore more inspiration take a look at the best handbag trends for fall 2019.
Most of us look for comfort above everything. But don’t sell your outfit short in attempt to put comfort over style.
Nowadays, a beautiful pair of shoes can have it all – function, style and comfort.
Monica (above) opts for a pair of lace-up wedges. Check out a similar pair of lace-up shoes here.
Brands like Sam Edelman, Cole Haan, Ecco, Stuart Weitzman and Geox offer some good styles which are on-trend yet comfortable.
Sam Edelman pointy toe d’orsay flat
For more comfortable, stylish shoe ideas take a look at our list of arch support shoes.
Jewelry is an essential accessory with limitless styles and options.
Brenda (below) styles her look with a long pendant necklace. Find a similar key pendant necklace here.
If your goal is to accessorize better everyday, start with organizing your jewelry by type and color in a way that makes adding a pair of earrings, a brooch or a necklace to your look quick and easy.
My personal preference is for contemporary, statement necklaces and earrings. But you can choose your jewelry based on your own style personality.
Read up on how to transform your outfits with statement jewelry for some ideas.
A good scarf (or two or three or four) is such a versatile item!
Grace (below) shows how to use a scarf to mix prints. Here is a similar animal print scarf.
A scarf can serve as the splash of color your outfit needs, or do double duty as a headband, turban or even a summer pareo.
Don’t bother with a neutral tone. This essential accessory should always feature great colors and some pattern, too.
ALLSAINTS leopard print fringed scarf
I find that a scarf is such an easy way to elevate your look. You can just throw a scarf on with a pair of jeans and a t-shirt and blazer, or moto jacket, and you look instantly more stylish.
Plus, you can use the colors in your scarf to tie in the colors in the rest of your outfit.
Take a look at this article on how to wear a scarf and tie your scarf in different ways.
5. Wraps, shawls or cardigans
Cardigans, shawls and wraps straddle the line between fashion and accessory.
But if you’re simply dressed in some leggings and a sweater or t-shirt, nothing dresses up your look faster than the right wrap or cardigan.
Jona (above) adds a summer kimono to her ensemble. Check out a similar semi-sheer kimono topper here.
Not to mention that a little cardigan or shawl is a great item to keep in your bag when you need to spruce up your ultra casual outfit, if it’s chilly in the restaurant you’ve just arrived at or if the wind picks up.
Lightweight cashmere and silk blends are compact yet wonderfully warm.
Many women avoid hats because they think they don’t have the face for hats.
With the huge amount of hat styles and colors available, every woman can look fabulously chic in a hat.
Hallie (above) looks very stylish in her straw panama hat. Find a similar woven hat here.
Wear a hat to add whimsy, or on a bad hair day or when it’s really sunny outside.
Hats are also your skin’s best friend, keeping the UV rays off your delicate facial skin.
This article gives excellent advice on how to wear a hat.
7. Sunglasses and eyewear
Nikki (above) wears an on-trend pair of square sunglasses. Here is a similar pair.
Sunglasses are another important accessory that not only add personal style but also protect the delicate skin around your eyes from the damaging effects of the sun.
Quay Australia square sunglasses
For more tips check out our article on which glasses to buy after 40.
Most essential accessories simply add personality to your outfit.
But belts are like a magic pill – they slim you down and add a unique look to whatever you’re wearing.
Georgette (above) teams red accessories with her paler dress. Find a similar red belt here.
Invest in some good belts and wear them more often. They are great for cinching your waist, tucking your tummy and giving you an hourglass figure.
Halogen genuine calf hair belt
You can cinch a belt over your dress, tunics, tops, sleeveless jackets or your blazers for a different look.
Want to get more tips? Check our guide on how to pick the right belt.
9. Tights and leggings
This category is often forgotten when accessorizing.
But a beautiful stocking or pair of tights or some leggings under a dress or tunic can really streamline your look, add some personality to your outfit and even lengthen and slim you.
Deborah (above) is stylish and warm in a pair of black opaque tights. Check out a pair of similar tights here.
Here are two popular articles on how to wear leggings and how to look slimmer and taller.
10. Quintessential evening accessories
This is a general category but an important one.
Dressing up for evening requires its own set of accessories that sometimes don’t work with your daytime outfit.
Your quintessential evening accessories should include:
- an evening shawl or shrug
- a gorgeous clutch
- statement evening jewelry
- an elegant, evening shoe
- an ornate headband
Look for items that are classic and have some extra bling and sparkle.
Patricia (above) adds a classic gold clutch to her look. Here is a similar gold clutch.
Good colors that go with many looks include reds, blacks and metallic tones.
This is a bonus essential accessory for you!
Regardless of what you add to your look before you head out the door, be proud and confident of your style choice and carry that confidence all day.
There is nothing more alluring than a woman that walks into a room accessorized in a big smile and an air of confidence.
Don’t leave home without it!
Did I leave anything out? What do you think is the most important fashion accessory of all?
- The Best Women’s handbags For Fall
- The Ultimate Checklist Of Wardrobe Essentials: Which 28 Essential Pieces Do You Need In Your Closet?
- How To Wear A Scarf And Style 10 Different Ways
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Feature image by Grace
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I will add : pairs of silver and gold hoops in different sizes. So classic and go with everything. Of course the sunnies are a must for skin protection but also look so chic. Belts are a wonderful thing but along with hosiery are somewhat out of style right now with the loose fitting styles trending but are sure to make a comeback at somepoint as everything does right? – unfortunately I’m thick waisted so I’ll leave them to others!
I seem to be a shoe collector, I have well over 50 pairs. And I have lots of jewelry, not so many scarves, but very few hats (my head is too big and my hair is pretty thick, bad combination for trying to find a hat that fits!), and lots of bags . . .
Closer to 80 than 70, I now have to work with many new necessary changes. Proportions change. No more sleeveless or shown midriff. No more spikes or round necks. No more bare legs. As skin drops, legs appear shorter, waistline increases, and hips widen.
The new required results include turtlenecks, scarves, or huge stand-up collars only. If I MUST wear a t-shirt for an organization, I also wear a turtleneck dickey. My previous proportions in my 50s were a small waist but now I wear both thin & thick belts VERY loosely so they “drape”, to create the false image of a smaller, lower waistline. In order to distract from my now huge hips, I wear black slacks almost always. And lots of blazers/jackets/overblouses.
While I’ve got a good selection of scarves, hats & shoes I intend to relook at cardigans. Our winters where I live are usually pretty temperate,you do not need thick jumpers so a cardi is a great idea.
Never really thought about a cardigan being an accessory but you’re right it is. Thank you
The black dress in the section on tights and leggings is awesome. Do you have a source for it? Gracias
You can check out her IG account, the photo is at https://www.instagram.com/p/B0NuzNFgj9G/ She mentions that the brand is Lula Manna (probably in Australia)
I am definitely an accessorize woman. Lots of necklaces and other stuff you can adorn yourself with. Recently “invested” in a couple of mini bags from Zra. They do such cute bags and affordable. I saw a beautiful designer mini bag as well, but that was way out of reach.
Isn’t it amazing how you can wear the same clothes day to day but give them a fresh, new look with the right bag or accessory? I’m with you.