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Statement Pieces: 5 Ways to Control Their Messages

statement pieces in fashion“Style is the way to say who you are without having to speak” – Rachel Zoe

Simply put, your personal style is the message you speak with your fashion choices. So often, we throw on clothes and never consider what the choices say about us. I learned twelve years ago, it is important to focus on those messages and work to control them.

The idea of “statement pieces” seems to have entered into fashion, when the industry began to look at street styles as well as runway styles. Photographers and fashion journalists discovered a variety of unique “statements” made by the consumers and how they fashioned their looks. However, we have known for years, women may be remembered for certain pieces of clothing they select… such as, Katherine Hepburn and her trousers; Coco Chanel and tweed; and Iris Apfel and her glasses. Now, we come to every day midlife women who love statement pieces in an effort to feel confident and experience more visibility.

For me, a beautiful statement piece gives the creative message I desire as a component of my personal style. That statement may be found in a great jacket, or necklace, or scarf. After 12 years of sharpening the messages, here is what I have learned:

  1. MAKE ONE STATEMENT: Successful statement dressing for me begins with a strong, neutral foundation with the statement on top. However, if we have too much going on… a wild print, a huge necklace, bold belts, then it can be an epic fail. Early on in my makeover journey I would try to do too much and it took me a while to learn that less is more.
  2. THINK OF THE EYE: Statement pieces should capture the eye of the beholder right away. Again, this is a reason to just have one bold piece and think about where you should wear it. A statement necklace and jacket may keep the eye away from my pesky tire in the middle, but a statement pair of pants might bring the focus where I do not want it. Consider where the eye will go?
  3. SHOES ARE FUN: A colorful or decorated pair of shoes are just as big of a statement, but remember you do not want them to compete with the rest of the outfit, so select with care. If pattern mixing, it helps to remain in the same color family. Take good care of your feet and you’ll enjoy fun shoes for years to come.
  4. BEWARE OF THE JUNIOR DEPARTMENT: Perhaps you are using a statement piece in order to remain youthful with your style; then it is important to balance what you communicate. Too many sparkly statements could actually do the adverse and age your appearance. Be careful with bling, polka dots, neon, plastic, and trends designed specifically for the younger set.
  5. COORDINATE THE ENTIRE LOOK: Though one piece might make a bold statement, ask yourself, does it sync with your overall style? Always take time in front of the mirror to ask what the entire look is saying about you and make sure the message is what you want to express. Consider how each piece works as a team, including nail polish and glasses. It is also good to understand that a statement piece does not have to be a loud print or big necklace. Sometimes the most powerful statements are made by the simple, chic, well-fit, classic pieces, whether garments or accessories.

The overall statement I hope we all make is one of confidence and strength. If your selections are giving you that, then speak on!

Do you ever consider statement pieces? Let us know, and have a great week!

Pamela Lutrell

Pamela Lutrell began her blog, over50feeling40, July 2010 with a desire to encourage women over 50 to walk in strength, confidence and joy. Of course, head turning style makes each day fun!

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Tuesday 19th of April 2016

What a great article Pam! I'm still trying to figure out my statement piece(s). I love how large artsy jewelry looks on women, but I'm not comfortable with large, bold pieces on me. I'm not great with scarves and I'm not much of a shoe person. I guess I'm still figuring out my style:)! I tend to go with simple things, but I think I look a bit bland. These articles are so helpful in getting me to think outside the box I've created for myself. Thanks for all your hard work:)!


Tuesday 19th of April 2016

This is really interesting and you make good points. I don't do 'statements' every day, but when I do, it is typically with shoes. I am a sucker for floral pumps! Like you said, they are paired with neutrals and I am not a pattern mixer. I don't like to have too much going on. I have always considered my personal statement pieces my diamond earrings and a diamond necklace my son gave me. So my style is understated, classic and simple. I am not flashy and do know this about myself, though I do have fun with shoes!

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