In Shopping, Style, Wardrobe Help, Women

3 Stylish Accessories You Need: Create new outfits without breaking the bank!

Honestly if you want new outfits but have to stick to shopping your own closet, or are on a limited budget, it can be frustrating to read style blogs and then get the lust to go shopping for a new look.

If you’re tight on money, or just don’t want to spend a lot to change up your wardrobe and add some variety, here are 3 major pieces I used to help change the same outfits I wear over and over again.

STYLISH ACCESSORY #1: SCARVES

A great scarf can not only keep your neck warm, but add something (anything, really) to an outfit. There are a lot of different types of scarves, so here’s a visual to help you: Wardrobe-Closet-Scarves-Different-Types-Visual

Ranked in order of warmest weather to the coldest:

  • Squares / Kerchiefs: Short squares, tend to not have a lot of wrap-neck capability
  • Long Oblongs / Rectangles: Great for tying bows or just hanging down to give some colour
  • Circles / Infinity: Easy to pull on and have an instant “snuggly scarf” look; Great for cool weather
  • Shawls: Light & best for cool weather (autumn, spring), and adds something to any outfit
  • Cashmere Pashminas: Fantastic for super cold winters, you can wrap it around your head

All the different ways to wear scarves:

I don’t use all of the looks below, I only have 2 or 3 that I really go for, and most of them just involve wrapping the scarf around my neck and letting the piece add colour and shine to my outfit.

TURNING 3 BASIC OUTFITS INTO 15 OUTFITS WITH 6 SCARVES

My combinations are pretty simple: start with a basic outfit, and then add a scarf for interest and colour.

Wardrobe-Closet-Scarves-Different-Types-Visual-Outfit

 

The three basic outfits are:

  1. The tank top and jeans by themselves
  2. The outfit above, plus a white blazer
  3. The outfit above, plus a black blazer

WAIT, 1 OUTFIT x 2 BLAZERS x 6 SCARVES = 21 OUTFITS NOT 15 OUTFITS!

I purposefully omitted the entire set of scarves with just a white tank top and no blazer.


I think wearing a scarf without sleeves of some kind looks odd to me for some reason.

I always feel the need to add a blazer or a sweater, or SOMETHING.

So instead of having 18 additional outfits because of the 6 scarves, there are only 12 additional outfits, each one mixed with a blazer.

TOO EASY TO DO?

If you want to become more ambitious, you can do the following:

  • Change the footwear into a ballet flat or another pair of boots
  • Add a belt to belt OVER the scarf and the entire outfit
  • Change the pants
  • Twist two scarves together to create a new pattern or combination

STYLISH ACCESSORY #2: BELTS

Belts are my most used accessory. I use it over tops, sweaters, coats, dresses.. you name it.

Something simple like a white sheath dress can turn into something so much more with a well-placed belt around the waist to give definition and colour.

Wardrobe-Closet-Belts-Different-Types-Visual

Ranked from top to bottom:

  • Obi/Waist-Cincher Belts: Either in fabric or leather, a thick belt can really make an outfit
  • Skinny belts: For something a little more subtle, you can wear it around your waist or hips
  • Wraparound belts: A different kind of look that is more casual or trendy
  • No-buckle belts: A really interesting leather design doesn’t even need a buckle (great for travel!)

TURNING BASIC OUTFITS INTO INTERESTING ONES

This one is a bit more complicated, but you can play with a basic neutral dress, with a sweater or a striped (neutral or coloured) top to add texture.

It can all look sloppy so if you add a belt, it kind of ties everything together by belting the look.

Wardrobe-Closet-Belts-Different-Types-Visual-Outfit

When I say to belt over the outfit or under, I mean that you can belt the dress and then put a sweater over it, or put the belt OVER the dress and the sweater.

Lots of different ways you could play with this, it all depends on what you have in your wardrobe.

 

STYLISH ACCESSORY #3: NECKLACES

I use necklaces the same way I use scarves (I don’t really wear both at once, as I subscribe to Coco Chanel’s advice of removing an accessory before leaving the house).

Here’s a fast overview of all the styles of necklaces, as categorized in my head.

Wardrobe-Closet-Necklaces-Different-Types-Visual

 

Wardrobe-Closet-Necklaces-Different-Types-Visual-2

 

Once you throw on a necklace that’s graphic over a simple outfit, it elevates it and changes the personality you give to it.


TOO EASY TO DO?

  • Layer necklaces– Short necklace with long one
  • Bunch up a whole set of pearls — Put a whole range of pearls together a la Carrie Bradshaw
  • Pin a pendant or brooch to a necklace — give it some interest by changing your necklace
  • Hang rings onto a necklace — Put a ring or multiple rings on a necklace and wear it
  • Twist necklaces together — Be careful you don’t break them — sometimes I twist stone necklaces together to give more heft and to have different colours mingled in together

These three items are the easiest ways I know to punch up an outfit.

You don’t need to run out and buy one of each item, but hopefully this gives you an idea of how to change your outfits with what you already have in your wardrobe!


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Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

I got out of $60,000 of debt in 18 months using TheBudgetingTool.com. Since then, I have worked 50% of my career (taking 1-2 year breaks), and quadrupled my income within 2 years of graduating, going from $65K to $260K (savings rate = 85%). I could retire today if I wanted, but love my work-life balance as a freelancing consultant in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math). I also post daily on Instagram @saverspender.

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5 Comments

  1. Tania

    Great post! I dress this as well, very simple basic pieces and then I add accessories.

    The other thing I do since I don’t wear jackets as much in Hawaii is I’ll also change the look of a dress by layering a boxy top or sheer sweater over it. So, a simple tank dress with say a striped flowy top on top. I also do the scarves and no sleeve thing all the time but it needs to be a linen/cotton or very light silk/rayon (something breezy and boho). Those wrinkled linen blend scarves by Love Quotes are perfect. I’m a bit busty so feel like I have more coverage at my neckline when I have a tank top on.

    Reply
  2. The Asian Pear

    ooooh. I CAN COMMENT NOW!!

    YAY!!!

    *ahem* As I was saying, LOVE THIS POST!! 😀

    Reply
    1. saverspender

      THANK GOODNESS. Thanks for testing.

      Reply
  3. J
    Janine

    I love this! I need to add some more belts to my closet!

    Reply
    1. M
      Mochi & Macarons

      My belt collection is fierce 🙂 I use them all the time

      Reply

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