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The Third Piece

“Picture it,” I say in my best Sophia of the Golden Girls voice, “it’s 1994 again and you’re shopping at the Buckle.  You’ve saved up from that awful waitressing job to buy another pair of Lucky brand jeans and a flannel to wear with your Doc Martins.”

Or maybe it was yesterday.

Nothing against anyone who shops at the Buckle, they do have cute clothes.  It will just forever be tainted in my mind as the store of my youth (and I was a youth in 1994!).  I can’t bring myself to shop there.

But today’s post isn’t about the Buckle or brand name jeans, it’s about something that I remember everyone saying over and over again at the Buckle at the time.  “Layers, layers, layers.”

So what was “layers” in 1994 is now what I’ve heard referred to as “the third piece.”  Have you heard about this?  I can’t remember where I first read about it but here’s the gist- to make an outfit visually interesting it needs a third piece.  So it has to be beyond just a top and pants or skirt.  Think about that for a  minute.  Look over the pins in your Pinterest board for fashion.  What makes them special?  Generally, it’s the third piece.

Now, in the wintertime, the third piece is pretty easy.  And no, I’m not counting your coat, although it does add some dimension.  Most of the day you’re not in your coat.  During winter we bundle up in scarves, furry vests and cardigans.

But in the summer the third piece has to be a little more creative.  Some ideas for a third piece in the summer are a lightweight vest, a statement jewelry piece, a lightweight long sleeve button up, a statement belt and if it’s not too warm, a blazer.

I hope this is just a little incentive to make your every day outfits say more about who you are than just a plain old shirt and pants.  While it might not be the “layers” of yesterday, the third piece still adds a bit of something extra to make your outfit special.

I dare you to add in that third piece!

Here are some great “third piece” ideas from one of my favorite midwest fashion bloggers I turn to for inspiration! (She’s so adorable.)

Black and white prints for work chic!:

Black and white prints for work chic!

This is a great work outfit look featuring a cute little cropped blazer from Chic Street Style.  Note the bag and sunglasses are part of this look.

For more information on this look, you can visit her blog at:

Here’s one of my favorite fall looks-

Cute rainy day style:

Cute rainy day style

I’m pretty sure I own a version of that scarf.  That’s really the third piece here but don’t forget that bag with fabulous boots!

Here’s the link to that look-

And lastly, here’s that allusive summer look that she does so well-

Casual summer attire - love those crochet shorts!

Casual summer attire

That thin little top is a great third piece and covering her arms makes her legs the attention getter!  So cute and just a little bit gypsy for those who are, like me, obsessed with that look.

Again, here is the link to read more about that outfit-

Thank you so much Brenna for letting me feature you!


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