Everyone wants to look stylish and trendy, but who has the shillings to shell out for a new wardrobe every season?
Well, here’s a news flash from the fashionista files: You don’t have to spend big bucks to look like a million. Adding a few hip accessories is all you need to make your wardrobe go from fashion blah to ooh-la-la!
Here’s a list of our top 10 for this season:
1. A gauzy scarf
A basic outfit goes from dull to dazzling in an instant with a scarf. Picture this: A black tank, black cardigan and blue jeans. Ho-hum, right? But throw on a hot pink scarf, and whamo! Instant glam.
Not quite ready to go hot pink? Then ease into it. Kristin Marquet, accessory editor at Stylemom.com, suggests brunettes try cream or gray, blonde-haired women go with gray or brown, and red heads opt for black or brown.
If you have no clue how to fold a scarf, try this: Fold a long (4-6') scarf in half and drape it around your neck. Then take the one side with the two ends and slip them through the loop of the fold in the scarf. Pull the ends tight and adjust. For a funky vintage look, fold a scarf in half lengthwise and tie it around your head.
2. A great belt
Many women consider belts a no-no because they draw attention to the waistline. Not so. Belts can cinch you in and create a flattering waistline no matter what your shape. Just like in real estate, the key is location, location, location, says Marquet.
And don’t limit belts to just jeans. Leather belts worn low, slung on the hips with loose, flowing, summer dresses can add shape. Thin belts can be paired with slacks to the office. And rope belts look great with shorts and a t-shirt or tank top.
3. Two straw tote bags
Straw totes should be a staple of any woman’s wardrobe. They’re universal and never go out of style. The perfect blend of function and fashion, they're ideal for carrying to the beach, on an afternoon of errands, or even on a date. Since straw totes are so affordable, pick a lighter color for day and one in a darker tone to carry at night.
4. Gladiator sandals
Yes, they’re making a comeback. Try a pair in metallic, which will go with many outfits.
The key to pulling off gladiators? Don’t take them to the realm of gimmicky. "When you accessorize, not every item in the outfit needs to go with the theme," says fashion expert Jill Mara. "For example, navy shoes don’t need to go with red, white and blue cruise wear. And gladiator sandals don’t need to be paired with a gauze dress and a Grecian headband," she says. There’s a fine line between fashion and costume, but if you tread carefully you can still look trendy.
Leslie Pepper is a freelance writer based in Merrick, NY who specializes in diet and health. Her work has been published in print magazines such as Real Simple, Woman's Day, and Parents, as well as online publications such as WebMD.com and Everydayhealth.com.