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How to Accessorise and Dress Up a Plain Outfit


How to Upgrade Your Outfits with Accessories

Wardrobe fashion staples are often the more simple pieces we wear every day that matches everything and will never go out of style. However, these articles of clothing can often be seen as basic and plain when worn alone. That’s because our most reliable pieces, like the white t-shirt, all-black outfit, or denim jeans are more like the base of an outfit. Once you have the basics down, you can then build something more unique and striking from there.

If you’re looking to add interest to your day-to-day looks and turn them from boring to chic, here are a couple of easy and budget-friendly tips to transform a basic outfit with the right accessories from your already existing wardrobe.

How Can I Look More Elegant?

Classic Accessories

Looking more elegant through accessories is easier than you think, and once you have your signature accessory lineup down, you won’t have to make a conscious effort to come up with a more classically elegant look. 

Classic jewellery like diamond studs, pearl earrings and a matching necklace, or a cocktail ring are all smart pieces and matching accessories that can easily elevate any outfit and make it worthy of any classy event you might find yourself at.

Hair Accessories

Hair accessories are so often overlooked when it comes to day-to-day accessories, but they can be exactly what your outfit needs to become a little more sophisticated. 

We love how much girliness headbands bring to an outfit, or how silver and gold hair clips make you look much more put together with little effort. There are a ton of different hair accessory options out there that can match anyone’s personal style, so you’re sure to find something that flatters you.

High Heels

Heels are probably the easiest way to class up a plain outfit, and there are a ton of different options out there that you can choose from. From pumps to low-block heels, wear shoes that help turn a go-to daytime outfit that you wear to the shops into something worthy of date night.

Statement Belts

Turn heads while still keeping your weekday outfits work-appropriate by accessorising with a statement belt. These on-trend pieces, which you can belt around a blazer or dress, are great when you want to bring attention to your waist with an outfit that wouldn’t have otherwise. 

Whether it’s a wide belt or a slim belt, there are several options for this statement piece that you can choose from for any outfit and occasion.

Gold Jewellery

Gold jewellery is currently having a fashion moment in the latest trends, and for good reason. Whether you’re wearing a plain t-shirt and skinny jeans combo or a little black dress, pieces like gold hoops, necklaces, or stacking rings immediately add a luxe air that plain clothing just can’t achieve on its own.

Stylish Handbags

Move away from your backpack or a canvas tote bag for everyday looks and turn towards structured and eye-catching handbags instead. Brands like Kate Spade and Loewe make beautiful bags that can be used daily, and you’d be surprised just how much a bag can break or make an outfit. 

This is probably the simplest way to style a look with an accessory, as all you’ll need to do is grab it and head out the door looking immediately chicer.

How Can I Look Stylish and Comfortable?


On a casual sunny day, a pair of sunglasses are an easy and practical way to make a laid back outfit more interesting, and certain styles can also highlight your best features at the same time. 

We love how a pair of sunnies can be the singular pop of colour that pulls a whole look together, so don’t be afraid of getting a pair that’s bright and bold.

Statement Jewellery: Layered Necklaces and More

While classic jewellery can make any outfit more elegant, statement jewellery can make a plain outfit look trendier and fun, and are all the bold accessories you need to really spice up your most plain clothing. From statement earrings to statement necklaces, bracelets, rings, and other accessories, there are a ton of different avenues you can explore and to better express your own sense of style.

When you’re wearing a tank top or something with a lower neckline, a statement necklace around your neck will instantly draw the eye, with the necklace making your outfit more interesting. Statement earrings can do the same as well as frame your face.


Hats are another fun and versatile accessory that not enough people pay attention to. From caps to berets and bucket hats to cowboy hats, there are more than one option to bring life — and some sun protection — to your daily outfits.

Statement Shoes

You’d be surprised just how much a pair of shoes can instantly transform your plain look into something very fashion-forward. You can wear a simple LBD but pair it with some chunky patterned trainers or some unique boots in a colour that you don’t often see. 

Shoes can absolutely be the one tool in your wardrobe to make your outfit stand out, so make sure not to look past them the next time you go shopping.

Painted Nails

Moving away from the wardrobe, painted nails are an easy and affordable accessory anyone can do. Whether you like short nails painted with a muted colour or long acrylics with complex designs and animal prints, nails are a major fashion trend that can enhance even the simplest looks.

How Do I Stop Over-Accessorising?

One basic fashion skill that everyone needs to learn is knowing where to stop. While some might say that there’s no such thing as too many accessories, we’d disagree. If you’re looking to highlight certain features or bring attention to aspects of your outfit, drowning in accessories can do the opposite of what you want. 

A popular rule of thumb when you’re going to wear a lot of accessories is to take a pass by the mirror before you head out and remove at least one accessory. While it may not be the most important fashion rule, and while we know that rules are meant to be broken, this is a good note to keep in mind when you’re just getting started and experimenting with what works for you.

Final Note

Even the most basic outfit can be completely transformed and draw attention with the right accessories, so don’t think you need to have a bunch of different clothing in your wardrobe to have different outfits. 

Shoes, jewellery, bags, and hair accessories can do wonders for your style, so keep that in mind next time you think you have nothing to wear.

Tina Li

Tina Li is a part-time writer and full-time mum from London. Despite living a somewhat hectic life, Tina always finds time between taking care of her young kids and keeping up with what’s in vogue. She loves to visit the high street when she can and pick up anything that’s both simple yet statement.

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