The Items That Make (or Break) Your Look

I have been reading Inspired Style, a collection of articles about fashion and beauty, recommended by Pam of Over50Feeling40. Thanks Pam! It’s been a fun read, with many groovy tips that I’m incorporating into my style-encyclopedia.

One of the articles asks the reader to identify three items that “make or break” your look. These are the pieces that take your outfit from just OK to memorable, confident, ready-for-anything. Some frequently mentioned examples are:

  • A piece of statement jewelry (hello again, Pam, and the other bloggers who featured statement necklaces today!).
Cleves necklace by the incomparable designer Wendy Brandes
  • A fabulous purse that elevates your style, even if you’re wearing jeans and a graphic tee.
  • A favorite pair of sunglasses that make you feel polished and put-together.
  • A magnificent scarf or wrap with your best colors, that you can toss on four days a week for instant style.

You get the idea. Maybe a special belt, pair of earrings or even a statement lipstick. I can’t picture Paloma Picasso without her red lips. She might look just like the woman next door, picking up the newspaper!

It was easy for me to choose my two look-makers: my hair and my footwear. As long as my hair is rocking, I feel more confident below-the-neck. Bad hair = tougher to walk with a bounce in my step. So I do baby it, and put good products in it, and talk nicely to it.

Stylish shoes and boots always make me feel more fabulous. I picture a simple denim skirt and striped tee, then I mentally add some cool wedge sandals or deep red booties. Much better!

These shoes will put a smile on my face

I do love handbags, but living in the suburbs doesn’t offer the same opportunities for bag-appreciation as city life. And once I get to my office, I stow my bag for the day. I can still secretly adore it, but it doesn’t get many looks.

What are your make-it-fabulous items? What takes your outfit from good-enough to I-feel-great? Nothing is off-limits  : >

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  1. Hi Patti, Happy New Year! That necklace is one of my favorites. Santa gave me the WendyB acorn necklace and I must say that is now my favorite statement piece. That and my Ray Ban sunglasses and converse all-stars.

    I'm sorry I've not been commenting, am struggling to keep up with blogs, but do visit and read for inspiration. You always look fabulous!

  2. I def agree about the statement jewellery and I love those red boots xx

  3. fabulous tips! Thank you for sharing. Sometimes a statement piece will do the trick, necklace, purse or shoes.

  4. I agree with your deal-makers and breakers. Thank you for your thoughtful pointers on my blog. It really helps to get someone else idea and thinks outside the box.

  5. Oh gosh…I'd say a great handbag can really make an outfit shine, but then I am toting one around the city all the time.  I'd also say makeup, especially lipstick, makes me feel special.  A fresh manicure really pulls things together too.

  6. I love to accentuate with a scarf and a great handbag. I even like wearing a cute headband or a hat to kick my outfit up a notch.  I also like to accentuate an outfit with a neat looking tight with a great shoe.
    Love the necklace.  Jewelry is a fav of mine for kicking up an outfit.

  7. Patti~Hey GF!  Glad to be back!  
    Your hair always looks great and you have a great head of hair!  I have to rely on earrings and SOME color…somewhere…

  8. Mine are the same as yours. I need awesome shoes. I need wild hair. I love my red locks, my choppy haircuts and my outrageous shoes. Those things are where the majority of my spending tends to go. I also like a good belt, but I can easily thrift those.

  9. Fabulous choices!  You know I'm with you on the hair.  My other choices would probably be my favorite suede jacket and my (only!) wide leather belt.  Oh, and a couple of pieces of jewelry come to mind, too……

  10. I am all about the necklaces. And hair…what would we do without a brilliant hair stylist? I love the booties, and I'd add that for comfort, the absolute best high heels for me at almost 50 are the Cole Haan Nike Air shoes. They are utterly brilliant.

  11. When I think of your personal style Patti, I immediately think of your hair and boots. You know yourself well (and rock it!).

    For me, I rely often on a pashmina or long oblong scarf to take basics and make them look me. Not always a work look, but almost always what I am wearing on the weekends!

  12. I love those red shoes! I tend to put on some big jewellery (nothing expensive, just big!), or stick a flower in my hair if I want a bit of extra oomph. And red lipstick makes me feel more up for the day too. xx

  13. I prefer the tone of "signature" more than "statement."

    Not everyone is ready to venture into the world with a definitive statement.  There are situations where I don't feel interjecting a flashy or assertive statement is the best way to present myself. My clients don't relate to someone in something they can't afford or that doesn't go with their lives.  Since they're clients I need to be sensitive to that.

    A signature approach is personal, but not necessarily a stake in the ground.  Perhaps my jewlery is consistently  gold, but not setting off metal detectors.  Maybe a shade a blue that flatters always appears.  I may not care for skirts and always wear pants but leave the tailored jacket at home.

    With Christmas just past I think back on gifts I've received.  If someone said, "it just looked like you" then I take that as a reflection.  This is what my signature is to them.  It can change.

  14. It's funny, because you are SPOT ON!  When I think of your look, your hair and your booties come to mind….they really do MAKE your look and it's your signature!  For me, I think shoes and belts.  I think they take an outfit from ho hum to spectacular.  Isn't it crazy how it's the little things and not the main pieces?  Hugs to you!!!  ~Serene

  15. This post shows the importance of accessories.  I have the same bag problem in my line of work; I'm better off with a stylish tote.  As for accessories, most of the "memorable" often comes from quirky jewelry.

  16. The deep red booties are stunning, along with your hair.  I love accessories of all kinds, but hats are my focus.  They set the mood for the day!

  17. Thanks for both mentions Patti!  I agree with you about your hair…it's beautiful and is a signature piece for you and I love the red booties!  I love accessories and around my school I am known for my scarves…so I guess that is one of mine!  I really enjoy that book and I am glad you like it also…happy reading and styling!

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