After all we’ve been through, 2023 is a time to be more playful and go all-out with accessories. Beyond functionality, bags, shoes and jewelry are there to uplift us and provide a little more joy. It’s no wonder that designers have embraced a certain kind of maximalism by going over the top with patterns, textures, details and humor.
Accessories, in fact, have become extensions of the clothes to create maximum impact. In many cases, the same fabric or print is used to make a statement. On one runway, the print of the garment even extended to the model’s face. Otherwise, they were statements by themselves, referencing art from abstract to surreal or simply just being whimsical.
For jewelry the past two years of small, minimalist and understated pieces are definitely coming to a close as chunky pieces dominate. The New Year is definitely no time to play it safe, as there are so many exciting ways to make dressing fun once again.
For a total design concept, match your garment with your accessories. Altuzarra’s tie-dyed Boho vibe matched the mini dress with the bag and sandals. Etro’s prints covered dresses and hats. At Valentino, aside from the bag and shoes, the model’s face, arms and legs were covered with their logo as a veil, gloves and stockings.
After seasons of small bags, it’s time to go oversized again. Hermès has a perforated arty piece that has origami-like folds. Louis Vuitton went surreal by blowing up their coin purse into a clutch-cum-portfolio. Stella McCartney’s may be in beige but the giant knotted strap makes up for its understated color.
After dainty being the major trend in jewelry for years, designers are now going the way of big and chunky. With earrings, when they’re not sculpturally chunky like Tom Ford’s gigantic, sequin-covered hoops, they are long shoulder-dusters like Tory Burch’s Boho hoops with bead dangles or Bally’s gold baroque pieces by Rhuigi, the Fil-American designer who was inspired by the Philippines’ old churches.
Heels are anything but the usual this season. They are abstract and sculptural at Hermès and Ferragamo and whimsical at Off-White with their coiled toy reference, at Moschino with flamingos, and at Loewe with balloons.
Streaming series like Bridgerton and Gilded Age have made gloves a must-have to add Regency glamour to outfits this year, from highly embellished versions at Bottega Veneta to highly conceptual ones at Valentino and Botter. At Marni, they formed a continuous loop with the garment’s hem.
Knee-high socks and fishnets
Nostalgia for schooldays has brought academia chic back with knee-high socks. They were laced and banded at Dior and at Chanel they were in fishnets, which is also a big trend, even coming out as netted shoes to match the stockings.
Sparkles and fringes
To make your ensemble scintillate, add some sparkle or fringes to your accessories. Stilettos at Louboutin and Valentino are surefire sparklers and the bags at Victoria Beckham and Dries Van Noten will help you to sashay elegantly through any party with their fringes.