We can't all afford to dress in head-to-toe designer duds, in fact, the majority of us can't do that. I'm sure many of you are like me- I try to find solid "basics" at a good price. I try to find classic pieces that fit me well and that I know I'll get to wear over and over. If I find a great basic, I might splurge a little, but for the most part, a lot of my clothing comes from stores like Target, Marshalls, TJ Maxx, Ann Taylor Loft, the Gap, etc. I certainly don't have a closet full of pieces from Nordstrom or Bloomingdale's, because my checking account won't allow for it.
Despite my budget wardrobe, I like to think that I can put together an expensive-looking outfit by the simple addition of luxurious accessories. In fact, I have NO problem wearing a necklace or a pair of earrings that cost as much or even a whole lot more than the clothing I'm wearing. An inexpensive dress can easily be transformed by a silk scarf around my waist or neck. It adds a pop of color and the high quality fabric adds a richness to my outfit.
Think about the outfits you have hanging in your closet and what it would take to bring them to a new level. I can think of at least 5 accessories that would be worth splurging on because of how much depth and dimension they can bring to your wardrobe.
1.) Leather or Suede handbag- Whether you buy it new, or find a used one in great shape, a well-made leather or suede handbag will not only last you for years to come, it will instantly elevate your outfit. Avoid trends when investing in this piece- find something classic and neutral.
My "Ashley" satchel from Coach was a wise investment. This gorgeous, black leather handbag has already logged plenty of miles on my arm and I plan to have her around for many more years to come.
2.) Luxury scarf- whether it's cashmere or silk, find a beautiful, classic scarf that will work with lots of outfits. A print will always look more luxurious and add visual interest. You can tie the scarf around your handbag handle, or drape it over your shoulders, or thread it through your belt loops- the possibilities are literally endless.
I lucked into a vintage Schiaparelli scarf a couple of years ago- I've used it in a number of different outfits and it never fails to earn compliments.
3.) High quality shoes- they don't have to be heels to be fabulous; flats can be stunning fashion statements, too!
Whether you score an expensive pair at a bargain price, or happen upon a really well-executed knock-off, or you have the dough to splurge on a real pair of Louboutins or Jimmy Choos, do yourself a favor and get an amazing pair of shoes.
4.) Statement jewelry- even though it seems awfully trendy right now, statement jewelry is something that can always work to add visual interest and luxury to an outfit. Whether it's vintage costume jewelry, or something you found a Lord & Taylor last week, a unique necklace, ring, bracelet or earring can really elevate an otherwise hum-drum look.
I'm no stranger to statement necklaces and this one by Stella & Dot has adorned many an outfit of mine for both work and play!
5.) An awesome overcoat- A black cashmere wool coat, a camel-colored classic Burberry trench, a vintage fur wrap- whatever suits your style, invest in a truly beautiful overcoat. Your entrance will always turn heads with an incredible coat- everyone will be thinking, "with a coat like that, I can't wait to see what she has on underneath!"
I am still as in love with this coat as the day I bought it. It was a bargain at $75- the fox fur collar and brocade fabric turn heads like you wouldn't believe.
So, there you have it- a short list of pieces that will help add luxury and visual interest to your daily wardrobe. Don't try to force certain pieces into your wardrobe- keep an open mind while you're out shopping and you will be amazed at what falls into your lap. Sometimes the most exciting finds are the ones you aren't expecting!