Ask Nancy’s Guide To Graduation Accessories


Here at Fashion North, we have started reminiscing about our graduations, the awful unflattering gown and those awkward university colours.

Whether we have graduated or simply attended for a family or friend we all remember the horror of not only picking an outfit but finding the perfect accessories to match.

Occasions like this bring all sort of stress. You want to look glamorous but memorable, comfortable but daring.

We asked for some advice from our style Agony Aunt, Ask Nancy and Michaela Dale, who is the stylist for the biggest shopping centre in the UK – The Metrocentre, in Gateshead.

Here are their three golden rules:


1) Do not over accessorise!

It seems to be a common problem that girls over-do it when it comes to their graduation. They try to over compensate on the accessories front for not being able to see their outfit.

Michaela said: “I would always remind girls not to make any new fashion statements on such a special occasion, it’s also a time to put behind your student fashion and look for something a little more grown up.”

We advise to dress smartly as this is probably the most important event of your schooling career.

When it comes to accessorising, bear in mind that the photo is going to hunt you for years to come so don’t go buying stacks of bangles and chunky rings.


In a few years’ time you’ll look back and say, ’what was I thinking?’ Again, keep it simple with pretty day rings and delicate bracelets.

Michaela added: “Accessories are a key part of any look but can be difficult on a graduation outfit under a gown.”

Jewellery that means something to you is always much more significant and should be worn on such a special day, you could team it with a fashion forward piece but use it as your inspiration.”

2) Go with the flow

University colours can be unfortunate. So far we’ve heard of turquoise, orange and scarlet red.But what’s worse, is when girls do not co-ordinate and go for an unpleasant colour clash.

Do not make that mistake girls! Embrace your universities colour and try to find a clutch or a pair of shoes that will complement it.

Michaela said: “Colours on gowns can restrict outfit choices and it’s always a bonus if your university colours are complemented by your dress and accessories.

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“However don’t be ruled by it. There are so many beautiful floral prints out at the moment and you could include your colours in these patterns so be open to trying on lots of things.

“Give yourself plenty of time, and spend one day trying it on and have fun with it!”

3) Statement or subtle shoes?

We laugh at those videos of girls falling over at their graduation ceremony but that could be you if you don’t adhere to the correct heel height.

Try to go for a mid heel and remember you’re going to be on your feet for a long time so you want to be comfortable when talking to lecturers and fellow graduates. Perhaps, do not go for a peep toe as this can sometimes put pressure on them, leaving them red and sore.

Michaela said: “Shoes are very individual but this season I would recommend a stylish court shoe, which if you have a look in our new intu Metrocentre summer magazine, there’s a lot of choice about.”


High Street stores always stock classic courts in fabulous colours, which will no doubt match your theme.

So there you have it girls. As long as you don’t go overboard on the accessories front, try to complement your colour choices with a classic court shoe, you can’t go wrong. Relax it’s the moment you’ve been waiting for.

Now, cue the music…

Michaela and her style team are available to help with finding these special occasion outfits as well as helping to find the perfect gift for someone or an entire wardrobe overhaul.

For more information visit the metro centre stylist team’s website here.

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