From Balenciaga boots to mules from Mars, here's my guide to awesome accessories
Full disclosure, I didn't buy these Saint Laurent disco boots in the end, but I was tempted!
I love accessories. I always tell people to invest in their accessories rather than clothing since they are easier to shop for, (requiring zero trips to the fitting room), last longer, and they usually have a higher resale value if you decide to consign or sell them one day.
Here's a peek into my favorite accessories designers with several links so you can start shopping!
Casual heels: Rachel Comey Mars mules are my absolute go-to for casual heels because they have a comfortable block heel and look equally great with pants and dresses. They are probably my most worn pair of shoes and take all kinds of abuse!
Boots: Isabel Marant and Balenciaga make very different kinds of boots (Isabel's are ultra cool and bohemian while Balenciaga's are angular and futuristic), and appeal to me equally. Swoon. And I ADORE Saint Laurent ankle boots, especially these jodhpur-style ones.
Flats: I pretty much live in flats. My absolute favorites are from ballet shoe maker Porselli in Milan, right across from La Scala. Yes, they are obscure and pretentious, but they are surprisingly affordable and very well made. I have them in black, nude and burgundy and want gold or silver ones next...or cherry red. Or patent leather in any color!
Formal heels: I think Valentino rock stud heels are probably one of the most iconic and perfectly designed shoes ever, no offense to Salvatore Ferragamo or Christian Louboutain. I love the glitzy blingy look of the studs paired with the comfortable mid-heel for evening.
Did you know Valentino also makes a Rock Stud Oxford? I love wearing mine with sparkly socks.
Sneakers: Bensimon, hands down. This little French shoe (and lifestyle!) brand is amazing because you don't have to wear socks with them and they look really great with skirts.
I got these adorable limited edition Bensimon sneakers in Nice for my birthday!
Bags: I've already said how much I adore Saint Laurent ankle boots, but they make incredible handbags as well, especially clutches for going out. For a more casual look I like Tampico linen bags. They hold a ton of stuff without feeling too heavy, plus they look timeless and age really well. I'm also dreaming about this pistol- shaped clutch from Fauré le Page. And I LOVE Yvonne Koné out of Copenhagen. Okay, obviously I'm very much a bag person too...
Dangerous display at Fauré le Page in Paris.
Belts: Either I steal Norman's belts, or I wear this vintage Yves Saint Laurent belt I found for $1 at a thrift store. I'm trying to get more into belts, but I hate feeling anything constricting my stomach when I sing. I'm thinking of asking Norman for this Gucci beauty for Christmas...
Scarves: Even if I wasn't a singer I think I would still love scarves. I have scarves for every season and am a total sucker for an oversized scarf in linen or silk. Rag and Bone is always a reliable bet, and I recently discovered an artist called Yokoo on Etsy that makes incredible creations. (Her Soopascarf has to be special ordered.) Of course the Hermès Carrés is a dream of mine, new or vintage!
Here I am in Madrid trying on an extra large "scarf". Guys, it was literally a blanket!
Jewelry: Cartier's Santos watch in steel with gold accents is my idea of the ultimate watch. I think technically this is a man's watch, but I don't think that matters much, does it? I don't have pierced ears, but I nearly made the plunge after discovering Maria Tash this spring while we were in London. This is my dream pair.
Suitcases: I realize most people wouldn't include suitcases in their favorite accessories list, but since I travel so much my luggage is almost like part of my outfit most days! Norman and I use Tumi suitcases almost exclusively for their style, functionality, and durability.
Weekend bag: Longchamp's "Le Pliages XL" is my favorite travel bag because it folds down into your carry-on for all those extra purchases you inevitably make while traveling!
This was taken in Treviso, Italy where I was just sippin' on some espresso and probably up to something fun or impish or both. Accessories pictured: Valentino sunglasses, Saint Laurent handbag, and my wedding ring - yellow gold with cognac diamonds.
Sunglasses: Our singing teacher turned us on to Ottica Carraro in Venice and now that's pretty much they only place we buy sunglasses, apart from impulse purchase at Tj Maxx. They are amazing - each pair is hand made and ready for pick up in less than an hour, and they look effortless and chic with everything - they also have a great online store if a trip to Venice isn't in your near future.
Hats: My absolute favorite hat designer the Italian giant Borsalino. Runner up: Eric Bompard cashmere beanies!
Who designs your favorites accessories? If you could own one handbag, which would you choose? (I would go classic Hermès or Chanel of course, anything expensive and French!)