How To Be More Stylish, According To A Fashion Editor

Five easy changes you can make to elevate your style game.
a collage of well-dressed women demonstrating how to be more stylish
Images: All photographed by Glen Michael Edwards, collage by Ella Sangster

We’ve all been there: The moment when you’re tearing through your closet and realise, despite the copious amount of clothing that you own, that you have nothing to wear.

This notion—that you have nothing to wear—is almost certainly untrue. More likely that not, the issue lies not with the items you have, but how you are putting them together.

Despite what the revolving door of TikTok trends may have you think, upping your style game is actually quite simple. Rather than overhauling your entire wardrobe, it is a matter of reconsidering how you pair pieces, and strategically elevating the clothing you already own. You can take your personal uniform—be it a collection of colourful, voluminous pieces or a simple rota of T-shirts, jeans and blazers—from every-day to eye-catching by employing several small techniques.

Ahead, marie claire Australia’s Market Editor, Emily Gittany offers her advice on how to become more stylish.

1. Wear An Unexpected Shoe

A simple way to add an element of cool to your look is by choosing footwear that doesn’t quite make sense. Dubbed the ‘wrong shoe theory’ by stylist Allison Bornstein, the idea is that you should swap the shoe you would normally reach for for one that is a little “off.” This indicates there is intention behind your choices and gives your outfit personality.

“I love having an unexpected shoe or two in my wardrobe to spice up my outfit when I’m wanting to change it up,” Emily says. “Experiment with different shoes, like knee high boots under a long skirt, or switch out your kitten heels for a lace up loafer and socks.”

Other examples might include pairing a dainty heel or a sandal with an oversized suit; or a brightly-coloured shoe with a neutral outfit.

2. Don’t Forget Jewellery

Accessories have the power to make the ordinary extraordinary. This is particularly true of jewellery, which stays on your person and offers endless styling opportunities.

Emily notes that it is also a form of self-expression within itself, so it is totally individualised and exciting to experiment with.

“For me, I have my everyday pieces, which are minimal yet chic and work with any look. I love being able to wake up in the morning, layer them on without too much thought and feeling chic everyday,” she says. ” I would recommend finding your key pieces as a base and adding or changing them up when you feel like something a little extra.”

To find your signature jewellery look, play around with stacking pieces, mixing metals or wearing your jewels unconventionally, such as a bangles or a watch over a sleeve.

Find marie claire editors’ favourite brands to buy from here.

3. A Good Belt or Bag Goes A Long Way

A good belt is a must in upping your style game—and a well-chosen bag doesn’t hurt, either. As with jewellery, well-chosen accessories go a long way when elevating an outfit. A belt or bag can add contrast, dimension or colour in a subtle way. They may not be the first thing someone notices, but their role in bringing a look together can’t be understated.

Emily says, “I love a belt! And to be quite honest, I have one great one that I wear with all my tailored pants and skirts. It’s a lifesaver having one belt that looks good with different outfits and it saves me lots of time.”

She adds, “I also have one chic bag I use every day, which pairs well with any outfit. I rarely change bags unless it’s a special occasion, or if I need a new everyday bag.” Discover marie claire Australia’s edit of the best local handbag brands to shop from here.

4. Layer, Layer, Layer

On of the best ways to make an outfit more interesting is by layering.

“Especially now that the weather is cooler, layer shirts on top of shirts, collared tops under knits, blazers under coats,” Emily advises. “Get creative and don’t be scared to add a few extra layers to your outfit.”

Play around with different textures, or style organic and structured shapes on top of each other for added intrigue.

5. Iron Or Steam Your Clothes

There’s nothing chic about crinkles. As simple as it sounds, ensuring your garments are pressed will make you look more put together.

Emily says, “I love my steamer, it’s my best friend and I take it everywhere with me (I’m not joking).”

“I believe ironing or steaming your garments allows for a more polished feel and freshens any look (it also doesn’t take very long to do so!),” she adds. Shop some of our recommended steamers below.


Sunbeam PowerShot Handheld Garment Steamer

$54.95 at Myer


Tefal Pure Pop Garment Steamer Teal

$99 at The Good Guys

How To Be More Stylish

To recap, if you are wondering how to be more stylish, these are the guidelines to abide by:

  • Choose the “wrong” shoe
  • Always wear jewellery
  • Invest in a versatile belt and a good bag
  • Play with layering
  • Ensure your garments are ironed or steamed

Related stories