How To Accessorize Like a Stylist

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 4: Out the Door, Handbag

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 4: Out the Door, Handbag

The Art of Accessorizing

Capsule wardrobe success is all about versatility. Obviously your garments need to coordinate but the real secret to creating a trillion outfits out of 37.5 pieces is the strength of your accessory game. Accessories are the critical difference between putting on clothes and rocking an outfit.

If this seems intimidating, I get it. Accessorizing is an art. But, girl - you're savvy! You've already embraced your inner fashion stylist by creating a capsule wardrobe. Once you apply your obvious ingenuity to this easy accessorizing formula you'll be slaying outfits like it's your JOB!

Step 1: Outfit Base

Your outfit base is the simply the 1 - 2 garments that cover your nakedness. You could definitely leave the house like this, but no one would call it stylish. 

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 1: Outfit Base

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 1: Outfit Base

Before you start to accessorize, consider your outfit base. Is it neutral? Colorful? Does it feature textural details or an intricate print? The complexity of your dress, romper or top and bottom informs the complexity of the layer you'll add in Step 2. If there is a lot going on, keep the rest simple. If your base is canvas-like blank - let's paint!

Step 2: Add a Layer

How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 2: Add Texture Color or Print

How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 2: Add Texture Color or Print

This is what fashion bloggers call the "Third Item:" an additional element that adds dimension via texture, color or print. Think: hat, hair flair, belt, scarf, open chambray shirt or cardigan - even a statement necklace. A general guideline is that the additional element can anchor the outfit even if you don't add a lot of additional accessories.

Step 3:  Make It Pop

How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 3: Pick Your Jewelry

How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 3: Pick Your Jewelry

Personal Jewelry

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 3: Personal Jewelry

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 3: Personal Jewelry

I believe a girl should own a few pieces of personal jewelry that she wears with everything. For me it's a pave diamond disk (5th anniversary gift) and my wedding bands. You may have a pair of diamond studs or a delicate gold chain. Depending on the impact of your base and third layer, personal jewelry may be all you need. Should you decide to add additional jewelry these items are delicate enough to layer over. 

Balancing Trends

How to Accessorize Like a Stylist: Balancing Trends

How to Accessorize Like a Stylist: Balancing Trends

This is where so many well intentioned women fail the outfit challenge - loading on too many statements at once. When considering the following trend jewelry, select one per outfit: chandelier earrings, statement necklace, big cuff or arm candy. Keep the rest of your jewelry minimal.

Whatever your jewelry choice, make sure it vibes with your outfit. White linen dress or gauzy bohemian skirt? Pile on the delicate layers. Pencil skirt with white button down? Pair it with chandelier earrings and a thin gold chain. Jewel tone sheath dress? Opt for a statement necklace and simple studs. Swingy pants and fitted tank top? Try a cuff and thin gold hoops.

Step 4: Out The Door

(Appropriately) Fancy Footwork

Like your jewelry, your footwear should complement, not compete with the rest of your look. Bright pumps or exquisitely detailed stilettos could carry a neutral outfit on their own. Conversely, an ikat print romper or an exquisitely beaded ballgown begs for simple shoes. 

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 4: Out the Door, Footwear

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 4: Out the Door, Footwear

Above all, your shoes should fit the occasion. I don't care how expensive they were -- walking up the Eiffel Tower in 4 inch platform stilettos is not a good look. I've also witnessed an unimaginably chic woman work the 'ish out of a formal gown in metallic flats. The secret to style is looking effortless. The secret to looking effortless is feeling comfortable.

Grab Your Bag

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 4: Out the Door, Handbag

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 4: Out the Door, Handbag

Thankfully we've moved away from the era of the "IT BAG," when every wannabe Carrie Bradshaw had to have a Fendi Baguette. Hey, I am all for beautiful bags (and I did own a Fendi Baguette), but much like my shoes (but probably more to do with my two toddlers), these days I opt for practicality in purses. When selecting my handbag I ask myself:

  • Does it vibe with the outfit? 
  • Can I easily reach my stuff?
  • Will I have children with me? 
  • Am I going on a date or out with friends? 
MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 4: Out the Door, Handbag

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 4: Out the Door, Handbag

At this season of my life, with small children, an office job and infrequent cocktail parties, my handbag collection consists of:

SHOPPING TIP: When shopping for handbags, opt for neutrals (black, nude, brown or metallic) when purchasing a work tote or "It Bag." These are expensive and you'll want to use them often. Experiment with colors and prints with less costly styles like a crossbody or clutch.

I challenge you to invest in a bright bag that coordinates with an accent color in your core capsule. There is no way not to feel happy when you are wearing a colorful purse.

1 Outfit, 2 Ways

Want to see this formula in action? Here are two different looks created with the same base, re-styled accessories and swapped shoes. 

How To Accessorize Like a Stylist: Day Look. Keeping it casual with flat sandals and an open chambray shirt

How To Accessorize Like a Stylist: Day Look. Keeping it casual with flat sandals and an open chambray shirt

Wrapping Up

You probably have plenty of accessories already, you just weren't sure how to style them. However, if you feel like you could use a few more pieces to round out your collection, hit up a thrift store. Seriously! I love thrifting for vintage bags, jewelry and scarves. You can play around with different shapes, textures and colors without breaking the bank and you are guaranteed to find something completely unique. 

SHOPPING TIP: For your best chance at scoring a treasure for cheap, scour thrift stores in wealthy neighborhoods. 

Hopefully this basic to brilliant accessorizing formula helps you better visualize the elements of a well styled outfit. As you get more comfortable with the process, you'll start to tweak the formula and break the "rules" to create a look that feels 100% you. (PS: There are no rules.)

Be the Bright!

xoxo

Jenn

PS: If you like what I write, please click the heart. I'll be your best friend. 


The Only Capsule Wardrobe E-Book You Actually Need

If you appreciate the practical "how to put an outfit together" tips in this blog post you are going to LOVE my new e-book!

MappCraft | Tiny Closet Essential Survival Guide is the definitive source for creating a customized capsule wardrobe (full of color, texture and personality) and cementing your personal style in the process.

Nail Classically Chic Style with this Fool Proof Outfit Formula

MAPPCRAFT.COM | HOW TO NAIL CLASSICALLY CHIC LIKE A FRENCH GIRL

MAPPCRAFT.COM | HOW TO NAIL CLASSICALLY CHIC LIKE A FRENCH GIRL

We'll Always Have Paris

Fishnet socks, oversized sweatshirt dresses, undersized bandage skirts, the great Birkenstock revival - however exhilarating, trends are fleeting (even when they circle back). That is why the Classically Chic Style Archetype is so damn alluring. No matter the year, the country, your age - there is something to be said for a outfit formula that stands the test of time.

There are many variations on Classically Chic Style. Think: Seersucker, equestrian boots, a sleek black pencil skirt and pumps. For me, the most endearing (and Pinterest celebrated) is French Girl Chic. Je ne sais pas, there is something about Paris.

The (Classically) Parisian Chic Outfit Formula

After extensive Pinterest research, I have nailed down the 5 ingredient recipe for nailing Classically Parisian Chic.

Parisian Chic Essential #1: Flat Shoes

MAPPCRAFT.COM | HOW TO NAIL PARISIAN CHIC: FLAT SHOES

MAPPCRAFT.COM | HOW TO NAIL PARISIAN CHIC: FLAT SHOES

Besides being too terribly cool to wobble on cobblestones in heels, French girls have a practical reason for foregoing pumps: faire de la bicyclette.

SHOP FRENCH FLATS

Parisian Chic Essential #2: Slim Ankle Pant

MAPPCRAFT.COM | HOW TO NAIL PARISIAN CHIC: SLIM ANKLE PANT

MAPPCRAFT.COM | HOW TO NAIL PARISIAN CHIC: SLIM ANKLE PANT

Slim pants are a given (note I said slim, not tight), but the real secret to looking French girl (and boy) cool is to show the slightest hint of ankle skin between your pant hem and shoe.

Sorry. No socks allowed. 

SHOP ANKLE PANTS

Parisian Chic Essential #3: Striped Top

MAPPCRAFT.COM | HOW TO NAIL PARISIAN CHIC: STRIPED TOP

MAPPCRAFT.COM | HOW TO NAIL PARISIAN CHIC: STRIPED TOP

Typically characterized as a cotton top with blue sailor-like stripes, the Breton stripe top was introduced in 1858 as the uniform for the French navy. It did not possess any serous fashion cache until—after a trip to the French coast—Coco Chanel took notice. The iconic designer was so inspired by the sailors’ uniform that she incorporated the stripes into her 1917 nautical collection.
— Stylecaster.com

👆🏻👆🏻👆🏻👆🏻👆🏻👆🏻💋 

SHOP STRIPED TOPS

Parisian Chic Essential #4: Classic Jacket

MAPPCRAFT.COM | HOW TO NAIL PARISIAN CHIC: CLASSIC JACKET

MAPPCRAFT.COM | HOW TO NAIL PARISIAN CHIC: CLASSIC JACKET

Choose your own Parisian outerwear adventure: Shrunken denim, fitted blazer or classic trench. Look at these as investment pieces and shop accordingly. Add to wish list. 

SHOP CLASSIC JACKETS

Parisian Chic Essential #5: Silk Scarf

MAPPCRAFT.COM | HOW TO NAIL PARISIAN CHIC: SILK SCARF

MAPPCRAFT.COM | HOW TO NAIL PARISIAN CHIC: SILK SCARF

You know how I feel about my Hermes scarves. Aside from the beautiful craftsmanship, brilliant colors, iconic, whimsical patterns and endlessly versatile styling options -  each scarf was a gift from my husband and remind me of our honeymoon. In Paris. 

Now, you don't need an Hermes scarf to nail the Parisian Chic look (wish list), but I am going to have to insist on silk twill. 

SHOP SILK SCARVES

Best of Pinterest: Bloggers in Classically Chic 

Pssss... Follow my boards! 💋 

Are you a Classically Chic gal? Show me your looks!

Join 👉🏽 MappCraft | Tiny Closet Survival Guide 👈🏼 private Facebook group for my daily live #OOTDS (bloopers and all) and plenty of capsule fashion chatter.

Si vous aimez ce blog, click the heart and you'll have mine.

Merci beaucoup!

Be the Bright! Jenn

The 1 Scarf Styling Trick Guaranteed to Transform Your Capsule Wardrobe

THIS IS A VIDEO. WATCH IT!

Embrace the Scarf!

Capsule wardrobes thrive on versatility. The trick to creating an effective capsule wardrobe is to curate a collection of garments in which every item fits together like a puzzle. 

MappCraft: The 1 Scarf Styling Trick Guaranteed to Transform Your Capsule Wardrobe

MappCraft: The 1 Scarf Styling Trick Guaranteed to Transform Your Capsule Wardrobe

My Hermes silk twill scarf collection is the connective tissue that adheres my capsule wardrobe. My husband gave me my first Hermes scarf for my 30th birthday in 2007 but it wasn't until 2013 that I actually learned the one critical trick to tying the damn things. Inside that year's anniversary gift bag (above) I discovered a sweet little orange box marked "Cartes A Nouer - Knotting Cards." 

MappCraft: The 1 Scarf Styling Trick Guaranteed to Transform Your Capsule Wardrobe

MappCraft: The 1 Scarf Styling Trick Guaranteed to Transform Your Capsule Wardrobe

The Hermes Knotting Card deck taught me how to fashion scarves as belts, head wraps, neck ties, bows, bracelets - even halter tops -- but the foundation for all of those styles was the one simple little folding trick I share in the video above.

But I Can't Afford a $400 Scarf!

No problem, girl! Not every scarf needs to be Hermes. Check out the gallery below for a range of scarf options in a range of price points. Just know that silk twill folds more elegantly than other materials.

Still coveting an orange box? Put one on your wish list! Birthday, Christmas, Hanukkah, Valentines, Mother's Day, Anniversary - all fantastic opportunities to elevate your accessory collection via luxury gift getting. You just need to train the gift giver - here's my definitive guide on how to score an epic gift. 

Shop Silk Scarves

If you are serious about capsule wardrobing, you seriously need to embrace the art of the scarf because just one scarf can multiple your outfit possibilities in dozens of ways.

Enjoy! Show me how you wear your scarves in the Tiny Closet, Tons of Style® private FB group.

xoxo -- Jenn

PS: CLICK THE HEART BELOW! Tell your friends. Share the love. 

MappCraft | The 1 Scarf Styling Trick Guaranteed to Transform Your Capsule Wardrobe   Photo Credits: Erin Nicole Brown

MappCraft | The 1 Scarf Styling Trick Guaranteed to Transform Your Capsule Wardrobe

Photo Credits: Erin Nicole Brown

How To Stand Out in Black: S16 Outfit #4

Stop me if you've heard this one.

On Saturday afternoon I returned home after a long morning herding toddlers. I pulled open my shirt drawer to change into something comfortable and quickly sensed something was amiss amongst the cotton. 

My eyes expected flat textile but were met instead by a ripple of detail and depth. Suddenly, as if I was staring at an optical illusion poster in a long remodeled dentist's office, I realized what I was seeing. Languishing between a short stack of black t-shirts was a tightly coiled black snake.

Digest that while I address the thesis statement of this blog post.

How do you stand out in black? Texture! Details! Depth! Had my eyes not paused on the luxurious tactile quality of his grooved skin, I would have reached into my shirt drawer and grabbed an handful of cold blooded reptile.

Anyone who has ever been to NYC knows that black is eternally chic. Black matches everything, makes you look skinny and looks expensive. Black's versatility makes it a critical staple of any minimalist wardrobe. All I am suggesting is that you make like the snake and amp up your detail game. 

Unexpected Accesssssories

Second Skin Sandals

Haute Blooded Handbags