The first two years that I lived in New York, I only bought secondhand clothes. Granted, they were nice enough, but I was living life on a budget. If having to shop so strategically taught me anything, though, it's the fact that wearing expensive clothes and looking like I wore expensive clothes were two very different things. The key lay all in my accessories.
Whether I was wearing jeans and a T-shirt or was heading somewhere with a black-tie dress code, I learned through my own trial and error that the way I accessorized could make my ensembles look cheap or could actually make them look more luxe than they really were.
Now as someone who can be a bit of lazy dresser (er, can we call it "laid-back"?), it isn't in my nature to go all-out with accessories. I might throw on a pair of earrings and a cute bag, but it's only through conscious effort that I've figured out the ways that I can make even my most budget finds feel anything but. Below you'll find a breakdown of the pieces I use to up my look, along with links to styles I like so you can put my trick to use too! Some accessory options are budget-friendly, others are a bit of a splurge, but that's only because if you can afford to treat yourself to something like a designer belt you'll wear over and over again, it will pay for itself.