Choosing jewelry for your outfit is easier than you think. Start with basic color theory. If you use contrast and complimentary colors, you can work to create an outfit that really shines.
Start with Your Skin Tone
There are two traditional skin undertones: warm and cool. If you know your undertone, you’ll have a much easier time matching jewelry and clothing.
Warm skin tones fit a bright and cheerful palette. Start with gold or copper for your base metal; accent with bright stones like topaz, emerald, jade, and citrine.
Cool skin tones look good with the royal and luminous palette. Silver and white metals always work with cool tones, but you should use rubies, amethyst, and aquamarine stones to add color to the design.
The undertone rule helps colors pop, but it’s only a guideline. Feel free to experiment with different kinds of jewels. If you love a piece of jewelry, wear it. There may be some science to color theory, but it’s more emotional than anything else.
Choose the Right Jewelry for the Occasion
Next, decide how formal of an occasion you are dressing for. Everyone should have both expensive and casual pieces in their closet. Rare gems, expensive metals, and delicate designs are all signs that a piece of jewelry is appropriate for a formal occasion. Plastics, cheap metals, and handcrafted necklaces are usually intended to be a casual wear.
As a general rule of thumb, you can wear nice jewelry to casual occasions, but you can’t wear casual jewelry to formal occasions. Use this leeway to rock a beautiful diamond jewelry necklace with your favorite casual summer outfit.
Coordinate Your Colors
Your jewelry needs to match your outfit. You can accomplish this in a few surprisingly subtle ways.
Start by checking your accessories for metal accents. Silver eyelets on your shoes, bronze snaps on your bag, or a flash of gold on your belt buckle can all be highlighted with the right jewel.
You should generally match warm jewelry with warm clothing and cool jewelry with cool clothing. Silver looks great against purple, and gold looks lovely alongside pink. Feel free to mix tones, but keep any changes consistent throughout the entire outfit. Center stones are usually easy to match with coordinating colors.
Pair Simple with Bold
The most important rule of outfit design is that something needs to be the center of attention. If you choose a shirt with a wild Hawaiian pattern, use subtle jewelry to complement it. If you want to show off a gorgeous necklace, choose solid-colored clothing that lets the jewelry shine.
An outfit has many pieces, so consider how your ensemble leads the eye. Bangle bracelets look great with simple dresses, but they can be too much if you’re already wearing an attractive belt.
Selecting jewelry for an outfit is all about taste, matching, and personal sense of style. Fill your box with items that make you happy; they’ll look good with nearly anything you wear.