Accessorize or Accessorise – Meaning & Spelling

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Candace Osmond

Candace Osmond studied Advanced Writing & Editing Essentials at MHC. She’s been an International and USA TODAY Bestselling Author for over a decade. And she’s worked as an Editor for several mid-sized publications. Candace has a keen eye for content editing and a high degree of expertise in Fiction.

When it comes to spelling one word with different variations, it can definitely cause confusion. One quick example off the top of my head is the word “accessorize,” which is sometimes also spelled as “accessorise.” But which one is correct? Don’t worry, I’ll go over the details right here and give you my personal trick to remember the difference so you never have to wonder again.

Accessorize or Accessorise: Which Is Correct?

Accessorize vs. Accessorise Ngram
Accessorize and Accessorise Usage Trend.

Okay, the short answer is that both spellings are correct. Like most things, it just depends on where you are in the world. In the United States, the preferred spelling is “accessorize” with a “z.”

British English Accessorize vs. Accessorise Ngram
British English Accessorize and Accessorise Usage Trend.

But then, in the United Kingdom and a few other English-speaking countries like Canada, the technical spelling is “accessorise” with an “s.” But, as a Canadian author, I can tell you most of us use the one with the z.

Is Accessories the Same as Accessorise?

Accessorize or Accessorise Meaning Spelling

No, “accessories” is most certainly not the same as “accessorise,” but I can see where they’d easily be confused. I mean, the last two letters are the same, just switched.

“Accessories” is actually a plural noun that we use to describe items that complement or complete an outfit or a look. This can be things like jewelry, hats, or bags. A good example is toys. Growing up, I always wanted Barbies that came with accessories like sunglasses and two pairs of shoes.

“Accessorise” means to add accessories to something, usually an outfit. I know, it’s a smidge confusing because you accessorise with accessories.

How to Remember the Difference

If you’re still having trouble remembering which spelling to use, a helpful trick I always use is remembering that there is no S in America, but there is one in British. So, when it comes to alternative spellings of words like this, the ones with the S are usually used in the UK.

Accessorize Synonyms You Can Use

I’ve got a few alternative words you can use instead of “accessorize.”

  • Embellish
  • Adorn
  • Decorate
  • Enhance
  • Supplement
  • Augment

Examples of Accessorize in a Sentence

  • My daughter loves to accessorize her punky outfits with chunky jewelry and enamel pins.
  • You can accessorize a plain black dress with just about anything.
  • My husband always forgets to accessorize his outfits; he’s so plain!
  • I like to accessorize my books with annotating tabs, book sleeves, and special bookmarks.

Examples of Accessorise in a Sentence

  • In order to accessorise her outfit, she added a colorful scarf and a pair of earrings before heading out to meet the Queen.
  • I say, Charles has a great sense of style and knows how to accessorise his suits perfectly.
  • Megan Markle always knew how to accessorise her iconic outfits during her time in the monarchy.
  • James Bond doesn’t bother with accessorising unless you count his martini, shaken, not stirred.

Just Remember

There’s no S in America, so for any alternative spellings with an S or a Z, always remember that the S is not the one you want if you’re writing for an American audience. I hope this quick guide was helpful!

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