My rule about jewelryis that it has to have some meaning to me in order for me to wear it. Everything I wear is from someone I care about, reminds me of someplace I have been or done, or reminds me of an important person. I think that is the statement more that anything. People frequently ask me about my jewelry and give me complements on my selections. It seems to be an effective rule.

I almost feel like there is some tendency to overthink details like this. Adding something to your usual outfits may indeed feel a little odd at first, but if you're using something that truly appeals to your eye and you find it beautiful or interesting, I bet you will quickly get used to seeing it on yourself.

Does it have to be a necklace? Would you be more comfortable with some other piece of jewelry? Statement ring? A really fabulous watch? Earrings?

I took a jewelry class at the local community college a few years ago, and made several pins. My original thought was putting them on coats, but I started wearing them on sweaters, too. I used sterling silver so they're good quality. I really enjoy wearing them. Have you thought about pins rather than necklaces?

I am fascinated by the plot arc of this thread, Sterling. FWIW, I used to be an avid "statement necklace" person and, somewhere along the way, they really fell out of favor for me. I do still wear necklaces, but they're more often simple pendants or geometric shapes than large statements.

Perhaps what you're looking for, rather than a statement item or a "third piece" is a focal point for your outfits? That can be different for different outfits. I have a small library of these types of pieces... an interesting belt, a hat, a few necklaces, scarves, a bold tote, a cuff, a unique pair of shoes, a kimono topper, etc. These are heart pieces rather than head pieces.

I have been following this thread with interest as I've often thought I should try statement necklaces but I can never get them to work on me. I seem to mostly wear either white peals, grey pearls, or a rhodium (sort of a brushed silver) long link necklace these days if I'm wearing a necklace. I'm still looking for a few more options, but I know at this point that the big statement style bib necklaces are just not me.

I think a bag does not qualify as a third piece because one is viewed without it in a majority of situations. Then again...that puts some jackets into limbo (in case you leave them habitually at your desk) and ups the ante for creating a polished look sans jacket.

Jenn, that's a really interesting way to look at the situation. Maybe a handful of statement accessories would be the way to go. Definitely something to think about.

Since posting this, and reading all the responses, I have learned a lot about signature pieces (replacing the word "statement"). I erroneously thought statement meant BIG and FOREFRONT. I had been considering all the wrong types of necklaces for me and that was the reason I could never bring myself to buy. None of them said my name because we both knew we were wrong for each other.

I still think a third piece is an "outfit completer." I want very much to update my accessory game. It doesn't necessarily have to be a necklace though. Although right now I am really assessing every single necklace I come across.

I actually looked into taking a beginning jewelry making class at the local university. They have one in October at a very reasonable price. I haven't committed to it though. I think I need to do more research into what I like and what I don't like.

THANK YOU to all the Forum Members that linked to different ideas. I have thoroughly enjoyed browsing the links for ideas.

Hey, Sterling!
I second the suggestion that you might want to try a Rocksbox subscription for a time. Even if you don't end up liking any of the pieces enough to keep them, it could be an efficient way to try out a variety of styles/lengths/colors of necklaces ( also earrings and bracelets). Perhaps it would be easier to start to narrow down what you do and don't prefer by wearing the pieces out and about for a day or two, instead of just trying them on briefly in a store.

Sterling - yes "statement" or "signature" mean different things I guess. But this very simple inexpensive necklace (which I love to wear) has gotten a lot of attention so it feels like it meets both descriptions. Funny how that happens. I guess it was a "wild card" for me.

Sphere Necklace
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Sterling - Third piece afterthought (I'll try to make it the last, lol)
So today I found myself totally not wanting or "needing" a necklace aka third piece.
I choose a simple navy tunic with fitted sleeves and a not quite boat
neckline (envelope?), cropped straight jeans in a light wash, nude
sandals (match my hair) and a navy handbag. I wore a slightly brighter
lipcolor than my natural lips. My hair was in good shape from a good
conditioning yesterday. I wore very minimal other makeup, a little
foundation, a very light application of blush, brow color and mascara.

And you know what? I felt totally pulled together.

So it got me thinking that silhouette, colors, and attention to hair,
makeup and details such as shoe choice and handbag choice are
definitely very much a part of the "third piece" analogy for me.

I wonder if the same feels true for you or if you always feel you are missing the "third piece"?

TexStyle -- what a great post. I definitely agree that silhouette, colors, and attention to hair, makeup and details such as shoe choice and handbag choice are very much a part of the "third piece" analogy.

Just from reading all these wonderful posts, I came to learn that that elusive third piece can be a combination of so many different things. It doesn't have to a formula. In fact, it would probably be better if it wasn't a formula.