Accessories have the ability to update and transform a wardrobe, alternately lending edge and attitude, or refinement and sophistication. Shana Colbin Dunn knows this only too well, having spent years as a wholesale representative before opening her own store almost seven years ago. That gave Dunn both the experience to know what's in the market as well as a chance to hone her sense of style and figure out what would appeal to her customers.
She describes her store, Kismet, as selling "boho cowboy chic" — clothing, jewelry, belts, bags and more that appeal to Colorado women. Dunn originally focused on accessories at her store at 3640 W. 32nd Ave. in the Highlands shopping district because a good friend on the same block was selling clothing. That store has since moved on and Dunn now carries apparel in addition to accessories. She's also branched out and has stores at the Streets at Southglennas well as Lowry Town Center.
What you'll find in her stores is a lot of color, from camisoles and cardigans to handbags and jewelry. She avoids black and anything too basic — the idea is to add a little something special to enliven an outfit, not dull it down. Here are some of her tips on items to update your fall wardrobe. Photos by Cyrus McCrimmon, The Denver Post
1. A knit scarf or layering piece. Ruanas capes, vests, shawls and wraps all come in handy when it's not cold enough to require a heavy coat but you need something to take the chill off. It may have taken a few years, but American women have joined the Italian and French in embracing the scarf as an essential finishing touch to an outfit. For fall, long but lightweight styles are great because they can be tied in multiple ways without being too bulky.
2. A colorful hat and gloves. nstantly update a fall outfit with color and pattern. Among the colors Dunn likes this year are teal and orange. Echo's knit cap and fingerless gloves (perfect for texting) fit the bill, particularly when in a pattern motif, or with such details as ruching.
3. A convertible necklace. Jewelry that can be worn multiple ways is going to add versatility to your wardrobe. Among Dunn's favorites in this category are necklaces by Colorado designer Christy Lea Payne. Payne's half-choker necklaces with semi-precious stones can be purchased in single, double or triple strands and can be worn long, midlength or as a short necklace. "They're also necklaces that you can wear every day," Dunn says.
4. Statement earrings. The bold necklace has been around for a while, so as a different kind of accent, try unusual drop earrings. Kismet carries a variety of pieces from Israeli designerAyala Bar, who combines various materials, colors and patterns in a single design. "They go with everything," Dunn says.
5. A clutch bag. This season, handbags are either small — the handy and functional clutch — or big, as in a tote large
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