How to change the mood of your outfit with accessories

by Sylvia

How to change the mood of your outfit with accessories |

Accessories can totally change the mood and look of a basic garment.  Depending on the accessories you choose you can create very distinct looks.  Let’s have a look at this burgundy dress (there is also a black version of this dress here), which we styled in the following four very different looks:

  • Arty and avantgarde
  • Bohemian
  • Classically chic
  • and Rock & roll

Arty and avantgarde look

The key to an arty look is to go for unique accessories and styles that one would not readily expect for a truly creative look.

In this instance, with such a deep burgundy we knew it was important to immediately add some brightness and pops of color. We went with a light blue beaded necklace, which immediately adds some excitement to the look. The bright beads are not such so serious and add a bit of creativity to the ensemble.

For a unique spin we also went with dark blue ankle boots with an interesting cut in the heel that makes them avantgarde and quite architectural (definitely a conversation starter). Coordinating eyeglasses will provide a great contrast on the face, alongside a cropped blazer with wide and comfortable cuffs.

artsy look dress colorful burgundy blue |

Bohemian look

To add a bohemian vibe to this look and make it more individual and relaxed we added a slightly longer and short sleeve dark gray cardigan. The low-key cardigan immediately dresses down the look, which we further relaxed by adding on a suede hat with a southwestern inspired leather braid.

As a contrast, we went with a western inspired fringe gold and silver necklace. Black fringe leather ankle boots completed the look for an easy going bohemian look that is both effortless and chic.

bohemian chic look western boots dress |

Classically chic look

The great aspect of this dress is both its versatility and its timelessness. So, the dress is a perfect base for a classically chic look. To create a contrast we added a well tailored black blazer, which immediately dresses up the dress (pun not intended).

We went with a simple black clutch with a structured look to it, which makes the whole look sharper. A statement necklace immediately makes the ensemble look more expensive and classy, which limits the need for much else. For a comfortable and chic finish, we added peeptoe flats with a crystal embellishment that cooridnates perfectly with the statement necklace.

classic timeless look burgundy dress statement necklace |

Rock and roll chic look

Secretly, everyone wants to try out a rock & roll chic look. Often, there can be a tendency to get a little too much of the rock look, with an overpowering amount of accessories. With the versatility of this dress, we went with a leather jacket laden with visible zippers to toughen the look of the dress.

Perfectly cut, the jacket maintains great proprotions for the flare of the dress. A black and gray animal print silk scarf was the perfect accessory to limit the amount of metal that would make this look to tough, but it gives enough edge and polish to really make a tougher look more chic. We grounded the look with studded black flats, which provide a light industrial edge to the look.

rocker chic look studded flats leather jacket |

To shop dresses similar to the one featured in this post, shop the boutique below:

How would you accessorize this dress?


P.S. Do you want to learn a lot more about accessorizing and how to complete your outfits? Our style course Accessorize Me Confident & Beautiful is now open for enrolment!

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Greetje

I think you gave so many good examples, that it is hard to come up with a new one. I think I would have added yellow to this dress. But I very much like the light blue necklace with it in the first pictures.


2 Sylvia

You are right Greetje. Yellow would have looked fabulous too!


3 Nina

I love these ideas too, and to Greetje’s point I’m currently wearing a coat in the same colour as the dress and sometimes accessorise it with a egg yolk type yellow Michael Kors bag, it looks fab.


4 Elaine

Excellent illustration Sylvia! Here are a few ideas I might consider. For the Arty look I would go for a more graphic design feature in the necklace hopefully incorporating a pop of color or shine. The Bohemian look with a fringed bag to evoke the 70’s trend. Tall boots (for a colder climate) heeled, flat or wedge for the Bohemian and Rock and Roll styles. A stylish pair of pumps as an alternative to flats in Classically Chic. What do you think?


5 Sylvia

Those are excellent ideas Elaine!


6 Rebecca

Love these ideas and can’t wait for the webinar!


7 beate

can i have this dress in forest green? 🙂
i have a never ending love for such simple dresses – in fact, i sew my dresses every time in the most simple style to get more wear out of them! only accessories, shoes and topper lend them to the situation i´ll wear them – casual, country style, city chic, even evening….
a sustainable way to have more fun with less 🙂


8 Donna Goodman

Sylvia, I really love the use of different accessories to change the vibe of one dress! I particularly like the rock and roll chic look. Any way to find out how to purchase the leather jacket? The cut of the jacket would be perfect for my body shape; and I have several other outfits it would help update the look.


9 Sylvia

Here is the link to the jacket: I also found this jacket that is very nice Good luck!


10 Donna Goodman

Thank you for the leather jacket link information Sylvia. Sadly, my size has sold out. I’ll keep watching your fashions for other smart looks. Your website is interesting, informative, and fun. I’m so glad I am a part of it.


11 The Velvet Runway

I love the burgundy dress and all the looks!

The dark blue ankle boots are so cute 🙂


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