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To Belt OR Not To Belt?

buckle-belts– that is the question this summer. When I think about it I feel as if I’ve done a slight injustice talking (a lot) about accessories, yet never once mentioning one of the most common, famous and incredibly stylish waist attires: The Belt! Just because it’s always there, at least for men (if we ever ditch it, the gents will remind us of its existence, so no chance in hell it’s gonna go away) doesn’t mean we should take it for granted. But are Belts a trend in 2013 summer? Are they making a comeback or, having never left the mainstream, they’re now suffering a slight readjustment and are capturing our attention more? I think it’s a bit of both actually. Designers are using belts more an more in their collections, for this season as well as for the 2014 Fall, and that’s due to the inspiration decades & currents they plunge into. Today it’s all about the Punk era, the 70’s, & the grunge 90’s – hence the belt’s comeback, right? A punk darker look (be it posh or grunge) begs you to put a belt on it. And your choices are limitless: metallic belts, studded belts, vintage or classic styles, funky designs… That’s the beauty of 2013: it’s all in, with a slight quirkiness. For the more classic ladies out there – Diane von Furstenberg, Oscar de la Renta, or even Vivienne Westwood’s 1940’s meets punk collection – are worth taking inspo from. It’s vintage meets classic retro with a modernist edge: thin or double belts, metallic, tightly marking the waist are reminiscent of those elegant vivid war ladies of the 40’s. But if all is in, and the sky is the limit… can we assume fashion rules apply no longer when it comes to belts? Can we put a belt on just about anything? belts-stylesYears ago one of the biggest fashion faux pas was not matching your belt with you bag, shoes and gloves. Just ask your grandmas. No respectable lady would ever be seen in mismatched accessories. Ha! Fast forward years later and the faux pas has turned into a must-do. Today it is not required to match your belt with your bag or shoes, au contraire last year the more mismatched you were the trendiest you looked. Crazy, huh? Well… it does take practice to mismatch right and look amazing in a crowd of prints that don’t don’t go together. But matching your belt with your shoes or/and bag these days, will not place you in the fashion-outcasts corner either. Because fashion is more liberating and creative these days. You’re basically free to do your own thing if you like it, it looks good and it tells the world who you are. Belts today are fun accessories that can be the centerpiece of your outfit, can be the pop of color, or the statement of your look. thin-beltTrends for Belts this summer? The metallic belt is the star of the moment right now, in both gold and silver, mostly on skirts and dresses or clothes in silky fabrics. It’s extremely elegant and glamorous and if you keep the rest of your outfit simple, a metallic belt, that beautifully nips your waist can make you look fantastic. Not to mention it can spice up old clothes, glam up looks you’ve already done, or just make you look more put together in that rich luxurious way from morning to evening. Celebs are wearing belts on evening gowns for trend sake and as a style-trick. evening-beltsmetallic-belt-trend-2013street-style-beltswhite-dress-metal-belt-street-styleBrown belts are huge this summer. Vintage looking, super long and tied in that special knot are seen on jeans, cutoffs, skirts, dresses, adding a bit of boho-chic style to any look. If brown is not your thing, yet you’re loving this vintage-boho style, pick long belts in neutral tones. And, to join the hipsters on this one – you have got to do the knot! :)  belt-look-2013brown-belts-trendbrown-knotted-beltbrown-beltbelts-stylegrunge-style-belthow-to-style-beltsknotted-beltstreet-style-beltstreet-style-brown-beltsthick-brown-beltThe Belt-Knot!

the-belt-knotFor classic, can’t-be-bothered-attitudes, yet still fashionable, or for grunge/punk styles pick black belts and play with designs, shape, textures. Go for studs, chains, super thin, patent, leather, thick, with funky buckles and wear them on trousers or over tops, skirts, jumpers. A cool belt should be the star of an outfit and can nip your waist over the clothes and not stay hidden for practical reason underneath it all.

Which brings me to another trend of the belts: show off your belts! They want to be seen, so unless you’re wearing the neutral styles on jeans or cutoffs (easily spotted from under your top anyway) you have to take your belt out: over skirts, over dresses, jackets, sweaters… Best part: it marks your waist, creates a great shape and is the latest accessory.

belts-lookbelt-trend-2013streetstyle-beltstudded-beltthick-beltAnd no list is ever complete without the weird ones: they’re the best. Funky belts in all the textures you can imagine, with gem stones, psychedelic prints, funny cool shapes – basically imagination run wild and landed on your waist. They’re statement pieces which most of the times hold an outfit together and bring it in the spotlight. statement-beltprinted-beltstatement-buckle-beltfunky-belts-stylesTrendy or not, belts are massive these days and I truly think the sky the limit design or color wise. The beauty of this classic timeless accessory is its versatility. How easy it does it give us what we want in terms of looks and styles, and how fantastically can it transform a look from boring to trendy? Though today rules are not to be obeyed, I’m curious: do you like matching your belts to your shoes or bags?