You want to create that perfect ensemble, but sometimes making your clothes and jewelry complement each other isn’t easy. If you want both your outfit and your jewelry to make a statement, here are some tips for pairing them like a pro.
Pairing a Necklace with your Neckline
If you’re wearing a dress or top with a simple, rounded neckline, a long or chunky necklace would be an elegant addition. You want to try to ensure that the length of the necklace is either shorter or longer than your neckline because nothing says “oops” like having to pull your necklace out of your shirt all evening. If you choose a shorter necklace, it will draw more attention to your face and away from your chest. If you’re wearing a low scoop-neck, try to avoid a necklace length that could drape into your cleavage. That looks sloppy, and it’s being there will distract from the piece’s beauty.
The best way to wear a long, dangling necklace is with a crew cut, boat cut or other high-necked top. A great statement jewelry piece will add dimension to a simple top that might not have enough pizzazz on its own.
If you’re heading out in a V-neck or cowl neck top, the ideal necklace length is so that it lies on your decolletage, not on your clothes. A choker or short pendant or chain would be the perfect complement to a dramatic neckline. Especially if you’re wearing a cowl neck, anything longer than the neckline would get lost and be either an annoyance or simply unhelpful in creating a stunning outfit.
Statement jewelry pieces are designed to be fun additions to an outfit, but you have to keep it simple. You could wear a single eye-catching piece, or a mix of coordinated accessories, but you want the right balance so that your look is neither overwhelming nor “too much”. Here are our favorite statement jewelry tips:
- Less is more: Remember, a bold piece is designed to stand out. If you have two bold pieces too close together (for example, earrings and a necklace), they essentially cancel each other out and it just looks crowded. Same goes for bracelets and rings. You could wear a pair of fabulous statement earrings with a chunky cuff bracelet, and that would be great — but skip the necklace. Or, if you’ve got a great layered chain necklace, maybe wear very small stud earrings and a simple band ring.
- Let your accessories make the outfit: Simple clothes = bold accessories. If you’re rocking the little black dress or jeans and a solid top, you’ve set the stage for a bright and colorful jewelry addition. If your jewelry is bright or detailed, stick with clothing that has less pattern or detail in order to avoid looking too busy.
- Remember that detailed necklines will clash with bold pieces. Any top that has a collar, halter neck or detailing near the face is probably not a good match for a necklace. If you want to wear a necklace with this kind of top, it’s best to go with something simple and understated.
When to Wear Statement Earrings
Of all the statement jewelry types, earrings are perhaps the most daring. Earrings, because they are adjacent to your face, could have the greatest effect on accessorizing your look. But, when do you wear an earring that’s a small stud, and when would you go for something dangly or larger?
Dangly earrings work best with necklines that are asymmetric, Queen Anne, halter or illusion. Studs work for strapless, off-the-shoulder, turtlenecks or scoop-neck tops. Some fashion experts say that the key is to wear one piece of bold jewelry with other pieces that are less dramatic or noticeable. So, if you’re wearing a dangly statement earring, avoid a necklace so that the earrings are the statement.
If you live in a colder climate, you might feel like you occasionally sacrifice practical accessories like hats, gloves or scarves for jewelry — but you don’t need to! You can make a fabulous holiday outfit by pairing a gorgeous infinity scarf with large, gold portrait earrings. Also, if you have long hair that you wear up or back, statement earrings will stand out even more.
Likewise, if you’re wearing a statement necklace, then wear toned-down earrings, big rings or chunky bracelets.
Statement Bracelet? How to match to the right Sleeve Length
Statement bracelets can add as much to an outfit as any other piece of jewelry, but you want to make sure that it’s out there making an impression. That means that before you select your fabulous wristwear, you want to know that your sleeves aren’t going to be covering it up. “Bracelet sleeves”, also known as “three-quarter sleeves” end between the wrist and the elbow in order to allow for your bracelets to be seen and admired.
Of course, short sleeves or sleeveless tops or dresses work the same way — if you’re wearing a halter-top dress or shirt, you might not want to wear a necklace because there’s too much detail up top. But, stacking some fun bracelets is the perfect complement to a detailed or unusual neckline.
Wearing a one-shoulder top? A bold cuff on the wrist opposite the shoulder strap is just the thing. Choose a color or design that complements your outfit but doesn’t compete with it.
When you choose your look…
The most important thing is to have fun with it! These guidelines can help save you from a few basic faux pas, but ultimately, you have to go with your gut. As you select an ensemble for that very special occasion, or just for everyday, choose your accessories and your clothes together — don’t make your accessories the afterthought!