Want to update your wardrobe with only a few key pieces? At least one of them should be a statement-making belt. You can cinch one over just about anything, and you’ll get a modern and flattering silhouette. Don’t settle for a simple leather style â€” go for something embellished or an exotic skin.
These wide, hardware-heavy belts were big on the runways, especially done in bright colors or cinched over sleek coats. Try wearing one over a fitted sweater or switch it up by wearing one over a classic trench. Go the cheap and chic route by picking one up at Target (yes, Target), or splurge on a bright red number by Marc Jacobs a studded Kooba, or this one by WCM belts.
Add a dose of femininity to your favorite jeans with a sweet little sash belt. Pick an embroidered or floral printed sash to wear with menswear inspired pieces, or a simple ribbon style to tie over cardigans and blazers. Whether you wear it around the waist or on the hips, a sash belt can be one of the most versatile pieces out there. You can even use a long, narrow scarf â€” Echo (carried at Marshall Fields, or get a steal at Filene’s Basement) has many different variations on the sash, or try this Ibisco one available from Neimanmarcus.com.
Similar to the sash, but heavier and wider, this Japanese inspired look is full of drama. You can tie a satin one over a simple dress (like Lanvin or Diane Von Furstenberg) or wear a leather version over a tee and wide-leg pants for pared-down chic. Although you can find obi belts at various price points, one of the best is the â€œElegantly Waistedâ€? Karen Zambos Vintage Couture piece from Shopbop.com.
Just like shoes and bags, belts in exotic skins are more popular than ever. From colorful snakeskin to luxurious ostrich and classic crocodile, you can find a belt in just about any skin and color you could wish for. This look works best in simple shapes and basic hardware â€” you want the skin (real or faux) to be the star. Try one over contrasting color like red with gray or royal blue with black (yes, blue with black â€” it’s one of the most up-to-the-minute combinations). For the mock croc look, try these Ralph Lauren belts, or pick up a gorgeous Etro ostrich skin belt to add a luxe touch to your closet.
These earthy belts are great for a relaxed look. Wear a wide braided belt low on the hips over a cozy sweater, or with a blazer and jeans to give the whole look a more casual vibe. You can even cinch one over a lightweight coat to give an old favorite a new look. Head to H&M to pick up the look for less, or pick up one of these classic braided numbers by Michael Kors.
A few wisely chosen belts can greatly expand your wardrobe, and the right belt will work on any shape. Wear a belt at the waist to enhance or create curves, or try one slung low on the hips with a loose top and skinny jeans to highlight great legs. Or just add a simple ribbon belt over your favorite jacket. Just have fun with it and make the trend work for you.
Double Buckle WCM belt – $110.00 Nordstrom.com
Ibsico Sash Belt – $40.00 Neimanmarcus.com
Obi Belt – $198.00 shopbop.com
Exotic Skim Croc Ralph Lauren belts – $42.00 Nordstrom.com
Michael Kors Braided Belts – Neimanmarcus.com $495.00