When In Doubt…Belt It!

There is no better ally for a girl than a great belt! It adds style, creativity, and dimension to your look.  Notice any designer’s collection from Fendi to Dolce & Gabbana to, a personal favorite of mine, Nina Ricci and you will see a key piece on every runway …the belt! 

Paul Smith

They aren’t just for holding up your pants anymore!  Belts have become more than just an accessory in the fashion world; they have tightened a notch and become a staple with any wardrobe.  When the movie, Sex and the City, came out in 2008, I couldn’t take my eyes off of Sarah Jessica Parker’s black studded belt that appears on more than numerous outfits throughout the film.  A belt, such as SJP’s, has the ability to give your ensemble an edge and even the illusion of a smaller you!  Think Grace Kelly, Marilyn Monroe, and Audrey Hepburn in the 1950’s.  These glamour girls helped set style trends for their lifetime and beyond and with one thing in common…the tiny waistline they portrayed with the help of a belt. 

Don’t worry about having the wrong body shape to pull off a belted look.  That doesn’t exist.  For example, if you are a pear shape, a belt will help bring your attention up from your hips.  If you have more of a straight figure, by placing a belt at the smallest part of your waistline it can give you the illusion of an hourglass silhouette.  My favorite belts are ones that draw your attention to the center of your wardrobe with a buckle.    Go ahead!  Throw a belt on over a long cardigan with a pair of boyfriend jeans.  Not only does it highlight the waist, but in this age of the voluminous top and bulky jacket, it’s the best way to tackle all that extra fabric, which can overwhelm a lot of figures.  It can help retain that feminine shape you still want to exude.  For a bit more spunk, try a double wrap belt or one that skips a buckle entirely and goes for a simple knot.  You could even spring back a few decades and throw on a woven belt for a bit of a 70’s feel.

*Matter of Style: Don’t forget to have fun with your addition!  Add a bit of sparkle or animal print in your belt. Just remember not to go overboard. If you opt for an animal print belt, skip the matching skirt.

One of my favorite things about belts is the fact that they are so versatile from casual to dressy.  Something as simple as a black, patent leather belt over a sweater with pair of heels can take your outfit from office to happy hour.  Whether your look is preppy, retro, demure or all three, there is a belt (or 20) out there for you!