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How to Accessorize a Black Dress

Updated on June 9, 2018
Little black dress accessories
Little black dress accessories | Source

What Accessories to Wear With a Black Dress

A black dress is like an artist’s canvas. It can be worn to any event by anybody who knows how to accessorize it the right way. Contrary to what it might seem, black dresses can make fabulous outfits despite being neutral. The simplicity of black dresses makes them versatile and hence can pair well with almost all color accessories.

Accessorizing a neutral outfit can make it go from one occasion to another. Create a sexy look with a black dress and take it to a club simply by playing with colors. Convert the same dress to business wear by wearing different accessories. Experimenting is crucial. Being able to spice up your clothes in a variety of ways gives you the freedom to utilize your closet to your best advantage.

In accessorizing a black dress, there is no right or wrong way. Although it may be too gloomy for most events, its simple nature makes it quite easy to decorate. You can make it radiant by dressing it up in numerous ways and using different colors.

Wearing a cardigan to spice up a black dress
Wearing a cardigan to spice up a black dress | Source

What Color Shoes to Wear With a Black Dress

You can wear any color shoes with your black dress, from black to white. It depends on the occasion, your other accessories and the look you want. Another factor to consider is the length of the dress and the style of shoes.

If you want to look trendy, wear glittery or embellished shoes. This look is perfect for a dinner or party. For a night out, you can go crazy with the style and color of shoes. You could even add some neon or patterned stockings.

Black shoes with a black dress will be okay if you are wearing pantyhose or socks in another color like white. Without legwear, you can add color to the other clothes. For example, wearing a statement necklace and a colorful bag will keep the focus away from the shoes. A crocheted shawl or cardigan in a light color will also liven-up any outfit.

Accessorizing a black dress
Accessorizing a black dress | Source

What to Wear Over a Black Dress

Though a black dress goes well with dark tops, you can create diversity by adding various colors. To keep your outfit stylishly dark, wear a black coat, jacket or cardigan with prints or stripes in other colors. T-shirts and peplums look better if worn over long-sleeved dresses.

For a casual look, wear a cardigan, sweater or denim jacket. If the weather is hot, choose these additions in bright colors like white. You can accentuate your cardigan or sweater by wearing a belt over it. To add fun to your gown, go for a leather jacket, boyfriend blazer or tuxedo jacket.

If you are dressing for a professional outing, opt for a coat, blazer, tweed jacket or button-up shirt. A plaid shirt, preferably long-sleeved is great. If the dress is fit-and-flare, opt for a cropped jacket. Long jackets are fabulous if they are the same color as the dress.

Other items of clothing that can bring excitement include a wrap, corset, turtle-neck and wool jackets. Depending on the weather, you can combine them in a variety of ways. These can add warmth in cool climates as well as add zest to your ensemble.

Black dress accessories
Black dress accessories | Source

Jewelry to Wear With a Black Dress

A black dress is an ideal background for experimenting with different items of jewelry. Try different styles and color combinations of necklaces, earrings, bracelets and watches. For formal occasions or office wear, choose pieces of jewels that are nice-looking but not too bold.

Earrings are great for making a statement with a black outfit. All types will pair well provided they are bold. Avoid earrings that are too discreet unless you’ve made a statement with your other accessories. Also wear your hair up or away to display their appeal.

A brilliant necklace brings instant flavor to a black dress. For a conservative look, use standard colors like black, silver or peals. If you want something more fun, go for a colorful necklace with adornments. Gold and other luminous colors are great.

For an evening, choose a reflective necklace that will glow with the lights. Try matching your necklace to the belt. If your earrings are very large, choose a necklace that will not clash with the style. You can also do without a necklace if the earrings seem to add enough glamour.

Jewelry to wear with a black dress
Jewelry to wear with a black dress | Source

What Color Hosiery to Wear with a Black Dress

Leg-wear is an addition that can transform you from having a simple dress to being fashionable. The colors of pantyhose that you can wear with your black dress are largely dictated by the length of the dress, and your other accessories. If you want to keep attention on the dress, choose sheer hosiery.

For a conservative but elegant look, choose stockings or tights in black or other neutral colors. Brown or grey legwear will go well particularly with a shorter outfit like the little black dress. With this look, you can choose opaque, translucent or sheer hosiery. Avoid shiny pantyhose. If you want to keep attention to the shoes, opt for toned leggings. Always stay away from opaque black leggings and tights with a black dress unless you are sure the outfit will be okay with you.

Some occasions like night-outs or cocktail parties will require adding a substantial amount of color to liven up a black dress. Ornamented, patterned and bright colored tights are great. You can choose any color provided your hosiery will not clash with the other clothing. This look may be fabulous as street wear.

How to accessorize a black dress
How to accessorize a black dress | Source

How to Accessorize a Black Dress for a Wedding

While it is odd to wear all black to a wedding, a black dress does not need many accessories to make it wedding appropriate. Accessorizing too much will attract unnecessary attention. Picking a pair of colored shoes, belt or cross-body bag may be enough.

For the jewelry, choose bright colors like white or silver. Wearing too many jewels is not the answer. A good idea is to have few pieces of jewelry but make sure they are enough to spice up the dress. You can choose a colorful necklace, earrings, and bracelet. Neutral jewelry goes perfectly with a simple dress if other accessories like shoes are colored.

Good colors for the shoes include blue, yellow, turquoise, red or green. To create a perfect balance, try to closely match colors among the shoes, belt, and bag. Accent colors look best on the belt or adornments. Floral accessories will be okay for a beach wedding.

Because a wedding is not about being noticed, avoid overdosing on the colors. A black dress may look cheap if buried in a mess of colors. If the dress is too revealing at the top, consider wearing a wrap. Keep your makeup and hair simple.

For the best outcome, consider the effect you want to portray and then accessorize to match the desired result. A little bit of effort can transform a neutral piece of clothing into a stunning, eye-catching outfit with just the right accessories. Make trials with different ornaments in diverse colors, and you will eventually have a grasp on the best ways of accessorizing a black dress.


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    • Maina Ndungu profile imageAUTHOR

      Maina Ndungu 

      5 years ago from Thika, Kenya

      I agree with you ADegotardi,

      The whole point of styling a black dress is to add flavor, whichever way you go about it. Metallic necklaces are a great plus.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Its true that a brilliant necklace brings instant flavor to a black dress. I have a sharp dress in lace and style it with a pearl choker necklace.


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