How to Make a Boring Outfit Interesting

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Make a Boring Outfit Interesting

On the weekend I spent a number of hours with a lovely client who when we were figuring out her personality style, realised that she had been ignoring accessories, thinking that they were less important than the clothes she was choosing, resulting in her not expressing an important aspect of her personality.

She told me that she realised that she was now going to spend more time focusing on the shoes, handbags and jewellery, the items that she’d overlooked, but those items are essential to help her create her unique personal style.

See how easy it is to add a little something to your outfit.  Don’t go for those boring shoes, pick a pair with pizazz.

Start collecting great brooches and other jewellery at art shows, markets, galleries, off the net (etsy.com is fabulous) look for pieces that speak to you, that you love.

Plain becomes kapow with just a small piece of edgy.

What will you add to your wardrobe to spice it up?

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16 Comments

  • Great examples! I've noticed that women who say "I am not a scarf (or jewelry) person often look so bland as to fade into the woodwork. Also, if you depend on your bag to add interest, it will only do so for you when you're carrying it! Earrings are an easy way to add interest, b/c you can put them on and forget them.

  • I love accesories, details on clothes, let's say garments? Metal is too often white metal but I love great butons, interesting bretels. Scarves! Paschminas of all colours! I find that if I wear cooler colors ( blue)(I suit better warm ones). I can instantly make it work better with a warm colour jewel, red, yellow, orange. I can express humour with accesories(More dangerous with clothes!). Fan of gloves. The magic of a pair of corail suede gloves! Hoses! A symptom that I am finally healing from wearing black:I am so tired of seeing it, and I find it is at his worst in acessories, bags shoes… It is sooooo easy to get more colour options and even crazy fantasy there…

  • My vegetarian heart sinks when I see people count shoes and bags as accessories, unless they're non-leather. To me it's disrespectful of the lives of the animals to get leather items just for fun. Having several pairs of leather shoes are really tough to avoid for health reasons, but beyond that I do not go.

    So for me accessories are jewellery and scarves and non-leather bags (watching out for unfair conditions for the workers behind the item).

    • As a vegetarian I understand your sentiment, but as long as we have meat eaters around, there will always be plenty of hides that can be tanned into beautiful leather. Personally I think it is much more disrespectful towards the animal to let its hide go to waste, than to make something beautiful of it and to always remember the animal by the beautiful item. Personally I’ve got a few leather Items and I love them, I love the feel of the leather and I would often in my mind “thank” the animal for this lovely piece that I can enjoy. Instead of this animal’s life having been wasted (eaten and forgotten), I choose to let it live forth through me by carrying it as a beautiful handbag, or shoes or a hat or a coat. I guess it is a matter of perception. 😉

  • Let's add something else: Pashminas have been a great colour school for me.I bought these not expensive ones (15$?). My first one was turquoise and I was wearing it so much that I got a yellow one, then a dark red one…Then I bought another turquoise one, lighter this time and with a bit of texture and pink tread…cause the hue was much more flattering for me! And I bought another red one that made me discover that cardinal fuchsia was one of my bests colours. Made me understand how to wear it and how certain colours are really enancing for my hair. Then I started to explore patterns. How the different colours related to my skin, hair, eyes, even theath. I have a big collection but I slowly gave away the ones that were'nt my bests when I discovered they suited best my friends and husband.Then I transfered my tastes to sumer bags.

  • I'm all about jewelry that amuses, entertains and/or "colorizes" me. Mostly because I'd rather people look up at my face than down at my feet….

    Etsy and vintage have been good to me.

    Love the examples you've shown. Sometimes it really is that easy!

  • This is an interesting subject. I have very few outfits, ( honestly ), and have been wearing the same skirt for quite a while now, only changing tops and necklaces, which I have shown on my blog. Choosing a different bag, belt or shoes makes your outfit look different too.

  • I am just amazed at how a pair of shoes can transform an outfit's look from one end of the spectrum to the other. Today I was wearing a black turtleneck and skinny jeans. I put on 3-inch booties and a leather jacket and immediately felt too edgy to show up at my son's elementary school looking too armor-like or "rocker-chio". So I ditched the boots and put on burgundy ballet flats and while I still felt fashionable, it immediately toned down my look to where it felt more approachable (and suburban mom-ish) even though the rest of the outfit pieces were the same. I could have put on a pair of slip-on Merrell clogs and the outfit would have veered into schlumpy.

    Isn't that weird? Just goes to show the power of accessories in general and shoes in particular; and how our choices can elevate (or dress down) an outfit!

  • I've been concentrating on accessories lately too. Partially its because I'm only letting myself buy accessories this semester and partially its a concerted effort on my part to be more creative. I love how an accessory (really any accessory) can really make an outfit special.

  • Very timely post for me. I'm coming to the realisation that I'm actually pretty happy with many of my basic wardrobe pieces, but I could definitely use some lovely accessories to pep up my look.

  • Interesting that a couple people mentioned pashminas. I've gotten quite a collection from various family members, but I never know how to wear them. They seem like you always have to fuss with them, and they never quite look right.Or is that just me?
    I do love changing around my shoes, purses, and scarves, though I rarely bother with jewelry. I just found an amazing enameled belt buckle for $5 at a consignment store. Wearing it with an everyday black jersey dress and heels, I can go to a party, or take the belt off, add combat-style boots, colored tights and my leather jacket and I'm ready for class.

  • It took me a while to get how to use accessories as a statement, but I'm getting there! Scarves are absolutely my favorite, and necklaces (pearls, beads, or an interesting pendant) as a close second. My glasses are a necessity when I'm not wearing my contacts, but I found that it's incredibly fun to pick a pair with a lot of visual interest so I actually like wearing them. As for shoes, I usually go for colors now unless I'm buying boots – my pumps and ballet flats just pack more punch when they are colorful or a nice metallic, and I've found them every bit as versatile as when I buy the same pair in black or brown. I got a ton of mileage out of my bronze ballet flats!

  • Hi Im. This year I am focusing on accessories and not so much on clothes. Accessories are like crack compared to clothes, which to me right now, are like bad pot.

  • great post- with the downturn economy is is less expensive to dress up your look with accessories. Currently I am loving scarves and brooches. Totally agree with your comment about the shoes- buy something special-I have a pair of green square toed flats that never fail to garner compliments and they coordinate with more than i would have imagined. enjoy reading your blog

  • Very interesting topic.I love to wear different accessories mostly earrings.I have almost 80-100 pairs of stylish earrings.

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