Ensuring you don’t over-do it with too much jewelry or other accessories is actually easier than you may think. There’s a couple of spatial and other tests, or rules if you will, that I apply to every outfit. Some basic guidelines are –
- Size of each piece
- Space between each piece
- Coloration of each piece
- Glitz of each piece
Think of your clothing choice like your canvass. The simpler your canvass is, the more options you have to accessorize boldly and profoundly. The busier your canvass, the less you want to accessorize.
For a busy canvass (your clothing), choose one or two bold pieces and ensure there’s space between them. If they’re right on top of each other, aka big earrings and big necklace, you might inadvertently cause a bit of visual dissonance (people don’t know what to focus on, so they focus on nothing except the visual overwhelm.)
More on Your Backdrop
If you’re going to try to wear earrings, a necklace (or two), rings, watches and bracelets at all the same time, you have to apply the above guidelines to ensure you don’t inadvertently over-do it. Before you even start, though, think about the rest of your outfit:
- Are your clothes, shoes, handbag and other accessories (scarves, belts, etc.) subdued somewhat – e.g., black, gray, navy, tan, dark brown, etc. / solid and non-neon like colors
- The more subdued your backdrop is (your clothes), the more license you have to be bold and overstated in your accessories
- If on the other hand, you’re wearing bold color or multi-color clothing (particularly anything with a motif, like flowers), you should really only consider something like a bold pair of earrings, a bold ring, or a bold cuff bracelet and not much more
Yes, it is a thing! One rule that I’ve always applied is skipping a space in between areas where you would wear jewelry, i.e., if you wear really bold and big earrings, don’t wear a necklace unless it’s something super streamlined, but you can wear a big ring or big cuff bracelet (one, but probably not both).
Mixing Different Metals and Bling
Some other considerations are how many different metals (silver or white gold, yellow or rose gold) and different colored gemstones you’re wearing at the same time. Again, the golden rule is that you have more license with a subdued canvass (your clothing) than you do with clothing that is already bright in color or carrying a motif.
Also consider that too much bling is offsetting. Think about people you’ve encountered over time who wear blingly earrings, blingly necklaces, blingly bracelets and rings all that the same time. It’s hard to figure out where to focus your visual attention when there’s way too much going on.
Focus on You
Let’s face it and there’s nothing to be ashamed of: we all dress-up and accessorize so that we’re noticed and appreciated for our style. If we inadvertently detract from that objective by over-doing our styling then we’ve missed the point and failed the objective.
What we’re going for here is that you want someone to focus on you first and foremost, not be overwhelmed by too much going on in your clothing and accessories.
It also depends on the message you want to send: elegance or in-the-face. There’s nothing right or wrong with either; you have to decide. Just be clear what you want to achieve and style accordingly.
I love, love, love bold … but only against a backdrop that can support it. I want people to recognize my innate style, while being able to focus on me in conversation, and not be overwhelmed with too much going on visually.
My two cents as always! Best! K