Style Me Bloggers: My go-to summer look

Before I participated in the Style Me challenges, my go-to summer look was shorts, t-shirt and flip flops. I live in Florida where it’s HOT and you must dress appropriately.

Pre-challenge: graphic tee with denim shorts.
Pre-challenge: tank top with dainty freshwater pearl necklace, no earrings.
Pre-challenge: tank top with dainty freshwater pearl necklace, no earrings.

However, since participating in the challenges (and with a little help from Pinterest) my go-to look has received a few updates/enhancements.

Around this time, I learned about a little formula that I’ve begun to apply. I’ve seen it called the The Three Piece Rule or The Third Element. The basic premise is you have two pieces: your top piece and your bottom piece. These can be button down shirts, long-sleeved shirts, t-shirts, tanks and jeans, shorts, khakis, skirts, etc. Then you need to add that third piece to complete the outfit. This extra element can be a blazer or jacket, a vest, a hat, a scarf, a piece of statement jewelry, a handbag or a belt. Shoes are usually not part of the third element but they can be if they add some pizzazz like a print (leopard, stripes) or shine (metallic, bejeweled).

Practicing the third-piece rule will help you look more put together, “more finished” if you will, adding that little extra touch of style into your outfit. I found this little infographic which is a great visual, explaining just what we’re talking about.

third piece rule

And this one helps me think through my outfits a little more.
third element graphicSo rather than just wearing a t-shirt, shorts and flip flops, now I add a third something. Usually it’s a scarf because it is an easy way to add color, pattern or texture to a basic shirt and jeans or shorts. But in the summertime, when it’s just too hot for a scarf -even a light one – it is usually a necklace. I used to not wear statement necklaces, preferring daintier pieces. But now I see that a chunkier necklace, or one with more color, can transform a ho-hum outfit. Consequently I have begun adding bolder necklaces and even a boyfriend watch to my collection.

I have also gotten several new pairs of interesting shoes such as espadrille sandals, metallic sandals and wedge sandals. Wearing a pair of shorts and a graphic tee with metallic sandals and a tassel necklace takes a sporty outfit to the next level. Let me show you what I mean from some outfits I’ve worn the past few weeks.

By adding a chambray shirt as a jacket, wedge sandals and gold colored hoop earrings and tassel necklace, my usual shorts and tank top outfit feels more polished!
My usual “shorts and tee” is upped by using a floral tee rather than a graphic or solid color tee. Accents include the gold tassel necklace and gold sandals and added a yellow crossbody bag.
My white shorts were in the wash so I subbed white boyfriend jeans and added some extra elements: striped espadrilles, nautical scarf and larger navy bag.
This is the same graphic tee I’m wearing in the “before” picture. But rather than pairing it with denim shorts, I am wearing pink shorts (unexpected color combo) and silver/white sandals. Those two swaps make this casual outfit a step above my old look.
In this “tank and shorts” outfit, I am wearing a lace tank (texture) with a statement necklace (color). Rather than the usual flip flops, I’m wearing cream wedge slides. Wedges sure do make the legs look good and it gives me a little height which is a good thing on me!

So there you have it folks! A few ways I have applied this concept to my go-to shorts and tank/tee uniform!

Have you heard of the third element? Do you add that completer piece? If not, try it the next time you throw on your “usual” outfit and see if it changes the way you feel about it!

Be sure to check out my stylin’ bloggy friends’ favorite summer outfits too!

About Sheila @ Making the Most of Every Day

I'm a wife, mom, and a homeschool teacher. I'm always behind on housework and paper pile sorting. I'm fond of this crazy life but not of melted cheese. I want to follow hard after God, making each day really count. I like to run, read, cook (and eat!). Thanks for joining along on my journey!

2 thoughts on “Style Me Bloggers: My go-to summer look

  1. This may very well be your most helpful “style” post yet. At least for me. I like that “3rd element” tip. I’ve been trying to do that lately (though I didn’t know what to call it)… to add an interesting accessory to an otherwise ho-hum outfit. I’ve been gradually trying to update my wardrobe, mostly with thrifted pieces, and working in the accessories and cute shoes.

    Though I hafta say while I love wedges and agree they make the legs look good, not all of us need that extra height! I was given an adorable pair of purple wedges that are even comfortable but I just really feel quite awkward at 6′ 3″ so they mostly stay in the closet! Sad.

    1. I’ve been finding quite a few things at thrift stores! I’ll have to do a post about that soon. I’m surprised with how that third element can really take the outfit from nice to cute! And yes, you don’t really need the added height like I do! 🙂

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