What makes a winning outfit? Why jewelry of course. Nothing takes an outfit from drab to fab like a statement necklace or a pair of dangling jewels. Who could ever forget the stunning emerald earrings Angelina Jolie wore to the Oscars in 2009? But if you overdo it by just a bit, you run the risk of transforming into the proverbial Christmas Tree and no body wants to hold that status.
So, for all you Fashionistas out there, I’ve handpicked some of the most prominent jewelry faux pas, to bring you tips on what and how to avoid them. Just know that your face shape, body shape and complexion play a big role in what ultimately looks good on you. The trick is to look like you have an endless closet by knowing precisely how to accessorize with jewelry.
Rule #1 – Make a statement, don’t yell it out:
Be mindful of how you combine jewelry. I know first hand how tempting it can be to want to wear all of your favorite pieces at once. But choosing one piece that steals the spotlight is all it takes to make a statement. The biggest fashion no-no when it comes to jewelry is being matchy-matchy. Don’t feel compelled to wear a chunky necklace and a matching cuff or chandelier earrings with an accompanying chunky necklace.
These pieces are meant to be worn separately even if they come in a set. Brides are guilty of this the most. Donning a wedding gown does not open the flood gates to wearing everything sparkly. The same rules apply regardless of the occasion – wear one statement piece at a time.
If you’re still not convinced, take a look at the picture of Paula Abdul. She is the perfect example of a beautiful woman with poor taste. Please, don’t try this at home.
Rule #2: Busy, busy:
Put your energy into picking that one item that will make your outfit irresistible and accessorize around it. The key is to never have an article of clothing or a piece of jewelry that competes with another. If you wear a chunky necklace, keep your ring and bracelets to a minimum and make sure that your outfit selections blend well to create a sense of fluidity.
A perfect example of what not to do is Amy Adams with her necklace selection for the 2009 Oscars. Looking at her, the eye doesn’t know what to concentrate on and makes it uneasy for the viewer. That’s not to say that separately both the dress and the stunning necklace couldn’t have been the epitome of perfection.
The takeaway is that you should always wear subtle garments to allow an over-the-top necklace shine. This should also be applied to other jewelry. With a necklace of this caliber, wear small earrings be it something as understated as diamond studs or hoops. The goal is to have a seamless look.
Rule #3 – Metal tug of war:
When it comes to gold and silver, there is only one rule. Wear them separately unless they are part of the same piece of jewelry. So, if you find a multi-chain necklace or one with alternating links that have both silver and gold, you’ve hit the jackpot. This opens your outfit up to a whole new realm of possibilities. You can now wear both silver and gold with your outfit or you can opt to stick to just one metal. Either way, you should pick jewelry that compliments this statement piece. The best part is that the same rule applies to the remaining accessories you wear like metallic handbags and the hardware on your bag of choice.
Rule #4 – Size matters:
Whoever said that size didn’t matter was obliviously not talking about jewelry. Size can make all the difference. It can take your outfit from tasteful to downright trashy. A statement piece is not necessarily measured in size alone. If that were the case, we would all be wearing chains that were down to the ground or look like Flavor Flave.
So, I say, there is such a thing as too big in jewelry. Earrings are meant to draw the eye to face. If the earrings are as big as the size of your head you may be getting attention but for all the wrong reasons. Case in point, Beyonce, who is notorious for wearing gigantic pieces.
Rule # 5- When threads and metal…meddle:
When fashion happens to good people or worse yet, people who everyone looks up to for fashion inspiration, it needs to be noted. Who am I to criticize prominent icons like Anna Wintour or Katie Homes? I am the person who tirelessly tries to makes sense of their unconventional decisions that went wrong. It make me uneasy to look at their ensemble in these pictures, and I know that I’m not alone.
Dressing is like art or cooking, there needs to be a balance and a sense of cohesiveness where the person appreciating the outfit from afar can do just that, appreciate it. Make the outfit hectic or busy or worst of all do not follow the fundamental rules of angles and proportion and you are left with something that gets labeled as “worst dressed.”
I wouldn’t go that far, I just think that both women chose necklaces that would have looked better with a scooped neck top or should have been omitted altogether. When both the jewelry and the clothing meet at the same point, it just looks confusing and throws the visual balance off.
Form a relationship between your clothes and your jewelry. So you don’t look like you got dressed in the dark or is haste forgot to take of a part of a previous outfit. Remember, shorter statement necklaces are generally better with a lower scoop neck, long necklaces look best with simple tops with little or no embellishment. Statement earrings look good with any outfit, just be mindful of what else you adorn yourself with. And if you’re wearing long sleeves, bangles are better than elastic bracelets.
Now go out there and find some fantastic jewelry. Skulls, spikes, feathers and ropes are all great trends to look for. Happy Shopping Ladies!