ACCESSORIZE

No outfit is complete without accessories. Here are top trends to pay attention to this season.

By Bébhinn Campbell.

Beaded Handbags

The beaded bag trend is truly original, and a little confusing. What seems to be another example of fashion trumping practicality, these embellished pouches are aimed at an Instagram generation who choose clothes that photograph well but aren’t always real-life appropriate. If handbags were invented for convenience (where else would we keep our stuff?), this trend seems to entirely defeat the purpose. 

It does nod to an overarching theme in Autumn/Winter catwalks: using texture to add another layer of interest. Beaded surfaces substitute the classic quilted or patent leather for a more original and intriguing finish. Go for a lined version to avoid your smartphone getting wet on those rainy winter nights.

Cowboy Boots

Love them or hate them, cowboy boots are officially 2018’s go-to winter shoe. If the idea makes you nervous, subtle versions incorporating only the angled heel can be found on the high street. 

More extreme interpretations include patterned stitching and a pointed toe. Wear with a suede-fringe jacket (leather and fringe have topped the trend list for Autumn /Winter) if you want to fully commit to the cowgirl aesthetic, or pair with a simple black dress and denim jacket for a tamer look. The style instantly adds a touch of country to an outfit, transforming a plain look into a juxtaposition of pretty and edgy. 

Silk Scarf

Flowy dresses in silk-scarf patterns have been paraded down catwalks by countless designers. The good news is that just buying the scarf will deliver a similar effect without the cost. Unique and one-of a kind scarfs can be picked up in most vintage shops and are probably the most affordable item on this list. 

The high-street is selling them for double the price, and they’re taking away the fun of digging through bargain baskets for the perfect one. Tie it around your neck, wear it as a headband, or attach it to the strap of your handbag. The long-lasting popularity of Hermes scarves, debuted in 1937, is testament to the timeless impact of a
 classy piece of silk fabric.

Belts

Belts are bigger and bolder than ever; in fact, the label of ‘accessory’ undervalues the crucial role they play in enhancing an outfit. No longer confined to keeping mom jeans from slipping down, Gucci and Moschino belts have become their own objects of desire. Who needs a fabulous pair of shoes or designer handbag when you can synch in your waist with a statement belt? 

Not only can it be figure-flattering, belts can also lift a tired outfit up a notch. A simple thick, leather band adds toughness to a floral midi dress, while Céline’s oversized, gold-faced design means you can keep the rest of the look toned-down and let the belt do all the talking.

Bum Bag

The ‘bum bag’ has long been thought of as the handbag’s less attractive sister. Associated with tourists and the overly cautious, ‘cool’ is not a word commonly used to describe this accessory. 

Labels such as Prada and Chanel  have given them a makeover, so you can now go hands-free in style. Picture your favourite designer bag, and now imagine a compact version strapped around your waist. The key is in the styling. Swap that windbreaker for a duster coat or wear it with a relatively plain dress.and your belt-bag will seem like more of a statement than an afterthought.

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