Today's Shopping List, There's a Reason Why Necklaces Have Stuck Around Since the Stone Age

Necklaces are nothing new, in fact, the gorgeous, shoppable creations out there today are just modern variations on an ancient theme as old as time. The necklace is still around for good reason, several good reasons in fact, and today, you'll see five of them...

today's top five shopping list picks

1.

Color therapy in necklace form is what we have going on with Aurelie Bidermann's 'Do Brasil' piece below. A necklace can elevate any tee-and-jeans look to an entirely different level, bringing light and color around the face (right where you usually want it), and making a look all your own. They don't call them 'statement necklaces' for nothing. We're not in the business of whispering here...

1 Aurelie Bidermann Do Brasil Necklace

2.

2 Belle Noel Enameled Modernista Necklace

3.

I have a couple of go-to, long gold necklaces in my jewelry arsenal. I layer them up or streamline with one depending on the mood and look. It's absolutely an easy essential you should have in your mix, and what better way to cover your jewelry bases than with this double rope necklace from Gorjana?

3 Gorjana Double Rope Necklace

4.

4 AV Max Gold Link Necklace

5.

Meet a modern example of the statement necklace. An encrusted collar that looks very fancy-pants is best thrown into a crew-neck sweater/top situation these days. Meshing the super-glamourous with something a bit more casual is a simple way to bring your style quotient up a level, and plus, it means you get to play 'dress-up' as an adult. This time you get to wear it out of the house (sans boa and chalk-blue eyeshadow; child of the eighties).

5 J.Crew Crystal Encrusted Collar Necklace

source: 1. Aurelie Bidermann Do Brasil Necklace (www.shopbop.com), 2. Belle Noel Enameled Modernista Necklace (www.shopbop.com), 3. Gorjana Double Rope Necklace (www.shopbop.com), 4. AV Max Gold Link Necklace (www.shoptiques.com), 5. J.Crew Crystal Encrusted Collar Necklace (www.net-porter.com)

See more when it comes to necklaces, jewelry, and every other fashion category they have out there. There are plenty for fashion favorites out there lined up and ready for your viewing pleasure in the StyleShaker Closet. Click to keep the shopping momentum going strong:

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Time for a zen moment, inhale, and go:

quotes

I love words, I should, I'm a writer in all of my spare time. That said, sometimes words do fail me. When it comes to definitions and placing things in their appropriate 'boxes' whether they belong in there or not, can complicate things when you're looking for the exact opposite, or clarification.

Happiness is one of those 'things' we all try to define, and yet no one really can with one universal sentence. It is just as subjective as defining what the word 'love' or 'god' means to a person, hence G.K. Chesterton's (great name, seriously, great name) quote.

People will always ask, always. Sometimes it's perfectly fine to not have an answer for them. Sometimes the only answer you know is the one that can only be translated by your core self, and maybe, that's where it belongs for now. Words can only take us so far after all, the rest is up to what's inside us, the undefinable space that makes us who we are and guides us in the directions we choose to go in. Explanations can be overrated.

See more on what to wear, how to wear it, and where to shop.

The Shopping List from McQueen Bow-Back Booties to the Importance of Dreams. It Makes Sense, Promise.

Today's edited-down shopping list of hand-picked fashion favorites begins with a little 'look-spiration' courtesy of the all-colorful, all-inspiring product montage:

1.

These ankle boots are ridiculous, in a good way. The look is streamlined with a little leather wrapping at the top of the ankle that works well over a legging. I'd hate for these little details, bow included, to get lost in the shuffle under an elongated, straight-leg trouser or flared jean. Keep it clean with a skinny leg, that's the tip on these McQueen boots:

Here's one take on how to wear it, courtesy of SJP and her colored-skinny jeans that I'm flipping for:

source: www.peoplestylewatch.com

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3.

There's nothing like a slouchy shoulder bag that can expand in every way possible to accommodate the kitchen-sink-sized load that lives in your everyday bag. All of that accommodating in one accessory AND it's covered in a super-chic woven fabric with zipper embellishments? That is be-yond. That is Alexander Wang's 'Jane.'

4.

I'm in love with this dress, from the unexpected neckline to the body-conscious shape that accents all the right points on an hour-glass silhouette. It's a powerful L.B.D. where a classic bottom-half marries well with the not-s0-classic top half. Like I said, completely in love with this Darwin dress.

5.

Here's one of my favorite tricks that I've been pulling out lately in styling sessions. I take a basic, clean white tee, throw it back to a classic jean (skinny or not), black skinny pant, a wide-leg black trouser (the options are limitless so I'll stop at three so as not to totally go overboard here), etc and layer on one fabulous statement jewelry piece, in this case, the below Reine de la Nuit necklace from Juliet & Company. It's just, so, simple. Why waste all that time standing in front of your closet every morning trying to reinvent the wheel? Why not just go for what works? Cue my favorite yogi expression: 'try easy.'

source: 1. Alexander McQueen Bow-back Ankle Boot (www.thoutnet.com), 2. Thakoon Addition Striped Sweater (www.net-a-porter.com), 3. Alexander Wang Jane Shoulder Bag (www.net-a-porter.com), 4. Ralph Lauren Collection Darwin Dress (www.thoutnet.com), 5. Juliet & company Reine de la Nuit Necklace (www.shopbop.com)

Shop more picks that didn't make this list but still deserve their rightful cameo in the StyleShaker Closet:

Time for deep thoughts, by moi. Ok, so maybe they're not so deep, but when I stumble across a quote that resonates, I have to share it. It's an impulse, habit, mild-addiction, that just happened to have found it's way into fashion-centric posts. See? Fashion can be deep...ish. Here it is:

I'm a dreamer, we all were at one point or another as kiddos. As we 'grow up,' very little weight is placed on dreams.  Priorities shift to bigger, more 'important' things in life like rent, your inbox, or your 'busy' schedule. Dreams get swept under the rug, covered up and hidden to the point where we don't even remember that we had them in the first place.

What we do remember, every day it seems, is that something is missing. I can't even begin to tell you how many close friends, colleagues, family members, and clients have said this to me in one form or another. I happen to think that 'something' is us. And a big part of who we are comes from our dreams, you know the really outlandish ones that we xanax-popping, Starbucks-wired grown-ups shake our busy (very busy) heads at and see very little value in because, well, they don't usually correlate to money in the bank.

That one dream, the one that makes you the most uncomfortable because you haven't listened to it in forever, the one that leaves you thinking, "omg, something is wrong with me, that is the most insanely grandiose dream," or, "there's no way that's happening, oh look at the phone I just got an email, oh look there's a squirrel, oh wait, where am I again?," or, "there's no way I could have that," THAT is the one you go after with everything you've got.

I happen to believe that one dream, or two dreams, (or two hundred if you're Richard Branson) are why you're here. Those impossible dreams are what can change someone's world. I've gone all Don Quixote with this, but you know what I mean. Dream big, even if it's just 5 minutes, and like me, you're dreaming of sitting front row at the Burberry Prorsum Fall runway show wearing, what else, Burberry Prorsum. I have a few others up my three-quarter length sleeve, the 'biggies,' but I only have so much room and attention span to write this.

So with that, I encourage you to go find yours, your 'biggie' dreams. And when you're ready, share them. Don't leave them swept under a rug for the rest of your time spent hanging out on this crazy planet.

See more on what to wear, how to wear it, and where to shop.

The Shopping List | From a Burberry Bag to Go Ga-Ga to a New Name in Jewelry OOAKjewelz (you will love), It's All Here

I basically couldn't contain myself with this round of the top 10 picks that made today's shopping list. I already sent a couple of sneak peeks out to some loyal fashion friends because I couldn't keep it to myself. I share what I love and nothing really manages to get in the way, even my posting schedule...

Sneaky shopping shares aside, here's the final shopping list, lined up for your viewing (and shopping) pleasure. It all starts with a new find in the land of handbags from Costella, runs through a few other hand-picked favorites from Linda Farrow to Topshop, and Alexander Wang to Burberry (I admit, I got a little designer heavy, but maintained a bit of balance with the addition of some amazing new names added into the mix, thank you very much). Let's begin at number 1, naturally...

1.

Bags are a toughie for me. I spent a couple of years working (slaving would be the more melodramatic term) away in the designer handbags office at Neiman Marcus, so I know quality, but my sense of what's acceptable on price point is completely warped. The bottom line for me is, a bag, a great bag (and you shouldn't be buying any other kind) is most definitely worth the investment. Am I throwing down $1500 for some of the labels out there? Not at the moment, that's what sample sales and designer dashes are for. But will I spend up to $500 for the right bag ('right' equates to original design, i.e. no label screaming for me, doesn't mean a thing if the bag looks like nothing special, AND, quality that will have me wearing it for years)? Yes. That said, it's always nice to find something for less...

Speaking of, check out a bag from a newer name (to me) with a great look. The details are not overdone, but they give the bag some personality taking it from an 'everyday basic,' and adding a little oomph which I'm always a fan of:

2.

Next up on the shopping list, another 'newbie' designer name (again, new to me) I found on Etsy and fell in love with. I'm a massive fan of taking basics, i.e. your favorite crewneck tee and skinny jeans, and throwing in a statement piece like the below vintage necklace, to make things a bit more interesting. It's amazing how one great piece of jewelry can transform an entire look.

3.

This pencil skirt, a classic piece everyone should have in their wardrobe (hop to it if you're missing it; don't just think workday chic, pair this with a tank and you have something for evening to mix and match outside of your L.B.D), is taken to another level by Boy. By Band of Outsiders. There's rubber in this striped skirt, yep, rubber. It's all in the details, and I'm fascinated. The color combinations here are perfection and actually work well back to a few options that you probably have hanging in your closet. You'd be surprised...

4.

5.

6.

I wear my printed blouses to death, SO, I usually tend to go towards a blend when it comes to fabric. Silk is just not my friend, and I'm over the whole dry cleaning situation (when I can avoid it), so, I am all about the poly-blend print below from W118 By Walter. Reds are a favorite of mine, so that doesn't hurt either. Wear this over denim, a pencil skirt, tucked into a skinny pant, or wide-leg trouser for that matter. Seriously, you wouldn't necessarily expect such a bold print to offer up so many styling options, but it really fits into almost any style situation you can throw at it.

7.

8.

I'll tell you what I want to do with this cardigan. Throw it on over a basic white tank paired back to some slouchy boyfriend jeans (rolled up),  and hit the beach early in the morning when there's a chill in the air. That's it, just walk and be in this cozy cardi, wrapped up and taking in the scenery. There's a story (real or fictional) behind every piece, just one more reason to love fashion.

9.

10.

Ok, fine, I can't even take it. I'm dying over this bag. The straw, the leather details, the trifecta of colors that only Burberry can pull off like this, I'm literally swooning, can you tell? This, is a bag. Awhile back, when I was in the buying offices, it's what we called the 'It Bag,' a term which was worn out by the end of 2006, and yet can still be found in several editorial publications (and now here, whoopsie). The only missing link would be that this bag doesn't have a name, or at least, I can't find it and I'm not into digging for the name, it's about the bag. That said, most 'It-Bags,' have a name, they become personified (not creepy at all) such as, 'Paddington,' or, 'Muse,' or even better, 'Coco Cabas.' Yep, I'm bringing it back...

So, I shall fix this style quandary, I'm sure Christopher Bailey will appreciate the resourcefulness. I'll call it the 'Brittany,' tote, which is another way of saying it's mine. And yes, my capacity for subtlety is surpassed only by my brilliant talent with the written word, WHICH, could only surpassed by my unwavering sense of humility, naturally.

Mine all mine.

source: 1. Costella Daniella Onyx Leather Bag (www.boticca.com), 2. OOAKjewelz Vintage Rhinestone Statement Necklace (www.etsy.com), 3. Boy. By Band Of Outsiders Striped 4. Cotton & Rubber Blend Pencil Skirt (www.net-a-porter.com), 5. Linda Farrow Luxe D-Frame Sunglasses (www.net-a-porter.com), 6. Alexander Wang Kamila Bootie (www.alexanderwang.com), 7. W118 By Walter Baker Marisa Chiffon Blouse (www.theutnet.com), 8. Forever 21 Platform Leopard Booties (www.forever21.com), 9. Brochu Walker Toggle Cashmere Cardigan (www.farfetch.com), Diamond Cut Swing Earrings (www.us.topshop.com), 10. Burberry Prorsum Three-Tone Strap Tote (www.farfetch.com

And there you have it. Another top 10 feast of fashion for the eyes. But it never ends with ten, actually, it doesn't begin with ten either. The editing that goes on is endless, and for those favorites that don't make it onto the hit list, like today's, there's always the StyleShaker Closet shelves where they receive their rightful shopping cameo (while still in stock of course):

Here's a moment to take for yourself, or just to indulge me and my love of sharing quotes that resonate  (in hopes that they hit home with you as well). Today it's coming from Bill Cosby:

There's always something to be afraid of, and nine times out of ten, it doesn't exist, it's literally all created in your mind. So in a sense, (deep thoughts for a fashion post, I know) you could very well be afraid of something that's not even there to be afraid of. Actually, that's exactly where  most of my fears reside. They're usually based on nothing real, which is pretty hilarious when you think about it.

I held on to a life that brought me routine, consistently, for days on end. Some people call this 'security.' I did this because I was afraid of leaving, afraid of the unknown, afraid of no longer being associated with a name in the industry that held plenty of well-deserved weight. I stayed because I was afraid of leaving. I saw what could happen that would be a potential 'negative' outcome (totally unsubstantiated of course), as opposed to realizing the good things that could (and have) come from such a change.

So, I jumped, I went for what I want. Actually, I'm currently in the midst of going for what I want, and yes, it's scary but only when I look at the 'what if's,' and guess what, those, aren't real. What's real is this, writing this to you, right now, and loving the hell out of it.

I guess I wanted this more than I feared walking away from what I 'should' be. Know what I'm saying?

I quit my 'job,' to pursue a dream, and guess what, I didn't die, life didn't end, and I'm not spending my days curled up in the fetal position muttering, "what have I done," in-between tear-filled sob-lets (the little sniffley ones that make one completely unable to form a complete sentence; #flashbacktobeingfiveyearsold).

I've actually never felt more alive. I wish the same feeling, oh and the Burberry Prorsum bag (of course), for all of you.

See more when it comes to what to wear, how to wear it, and where to shop for it.