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Dressing for Your Accessories

When you dress for work or play in the morning, do you pick your outfit first and then struggle to match your jewelry to your clothes? This season's hottest trend is to reverse your thinking and pick your clothes to match your jewels.

“More and more of my clients are buying pieces they simply love and not worrying about matching it to an outfit already in their closet.” says Lisa Sirlin, President of No Roses, an independent jewelry design studio in Los Angeles.

"Separates are big this season, so pretty much anything goes - women are allowing their jewelry and accessory choices to establish the look for their busy days."

“The wonderful benefit of flipping how you dress in the morning is that even the boldest jewelry can be conservative if paired with a neutral outfit,” says Sirlin. "One approach is that if you need a more conservative look for your office but desire a bit of glam, just pick out a fabulous, colorful pair of earrings, then follow it with some black, white or khaki clothing pieces. That way, you still get the oomph you want but reflect a more professional or conservative style."

Sirlin offers some simple tips on dressing with jewelry as your main focal point:

Create a focal point.

Focus on one spectacular piece rather than decking out every part of your person. A huge, bold pair of earrings stand up fine on their own, and will only seem gaudy if you also wear a double strand necklace, brooch and many bangles. Big pieces deserve all the attention.

Avoid being "matchy matchy".

Instead of always looking for the perfect trio (earrings, necklace, bracelet) that have exactly the same design and stones, choose complimentary pieces in the same general family. Pearls with pearls, warm colors, or all opaque stones are a new way of thinking with style.

Keep up the sparkle.

Make sure to invest in a good cleaning tool for your precious metal and gemstone pieces. About $40 will get you a good sonic cleaner and a good supply of polishing cloths, and help maintain the shine of that colorful investment.

Change is good.

Sure you love your Grandma's pearl strand, but a girl does need variety. Watch the fashion trends for styles that match your personality, then invest in solid pieces that you'll love for years to come.

Fads come and go, but your taste is what's important. Add meaningful pieces periodically and you'll have many more accessorizing choices for life.

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