People! You need a belt. You probably need a few. I've never seen more people come to me with a garment and not know why it doesn't look good. Nine times out of ten, it's because your look needs a belt. Gone are the days of belts being for function rather than fashion. Now belts are one of the hottest and most flattering accessories out there.
Belts can cinch your waist, make the appearance of your hips smaller and instantly update your look. In the early 2000's, wide belts were everything. They had big embellishments and were usually worn either tightly around your waist or slung low on your hips. Fast forward about eight years and the skinny, brightly colored belt was all the rage. These days, it's all about the 1 inch. Sort of a hybrid of the wide and skinny.
The 1 inch has some fashion rules. The movement is a waist cincher, buckled, then wrapped (as seen above), over all your layers. That's right. No belt loops required. Once you put on your blouse, your sweater, your pants/skirt... layer that belt right on top of it all. All those layers can sometimes make your look bulky and the smallest part of your body (usually a person's waist) is lost. Cinch it all in with a brightly colored belt and your look is instantly current. You can even layer your belt over your coat, if you're feeling extra fashionably forward.
A little tip to those of you who aren't exactly sure where the correct placement of your belt should be... throw on a pain shift or A-line dress (something that falls straight from your underarms). Try your belt on at the waist, then try it down on your hips. Depending on your body type, you'll immediately see which placement is right for you. I have a thicker waist and more narrow hips, so a belt is actually more flattering on my hips. Most women's waist is the most narrow part of their body, so their belt should be worn just below the ribcage.
Next time you're in the mirror and you feel like your garment is lacking something (it's usually shape), buckle and wrap a belt around that waist. Nine times out of ten, it's exactly what you needed.