It’s no secret that we have a thing for jewelry, handbags, and accessories. Have you seen our own style Pinterest boards? Yeah. That’s a thing for sure. So after a whole year of browsing, shopping, curating, and pinning, we’ve pared it down to just a few favorite picks of the year from small companies we adore. Not that we don’t love big designer brands too; but if you’re in the market for a little something for yourself, considering giving one of these cool accessories a look. You might discover a new favorite.
This is post is part of of our annual series of Editors’ Best of 2014. No pay-for-play, no contests to enter, no voting. Just the things we’ve loved in 2014 that we think deserve an extra nod for coolness.
First, let’s start with the accessories for people who can’t get enough of accessories–we were more than a little excited to announce the launch of Rent the Runway Unlimited (at top). For a monthly fee, you get 3 designer accessories delivered right to your door from your own curated list of favorites. Pinch us.
It’s no secret that we’re big advocates of Ethiopia’s FashionABLE, which helps provide a living wage to women in need through beautiful handmade scarves and accessories. But this year saw the expansion of their leather goods including this Mamuye Tote in three colors. It’s an utterly fabulous bag, and so hot, they could hardly keep it in stock. It’s also by far the most popular item in our whole Indie Shop and we don’t blame you.
We were so happy to help announce the launch of To the Market, a new shop selling beautiful jewelry and accessories made by trafficking survivors. When Liz first put on a necklace from the Starfish Project (thanks to Kristen, who’s an amazing gift-picker), she told her daughters that she felt it was imbued with the spirit of many strong women. The same goes for this stunning red coral Tabitha necklace, which we also featured in our holiday gift guide as one of our favorite stylish gifts that give back.
Another company going above and beyond to give back is Angela and Roi. Not only are the styles and colors of their vegan leather bags fabulous, but each bag helps donate to a related charity.
Sometimes the coolest accessories are the ones you’re not supposed to see. At least in the case of Matchy Matchy Bra Straps, a brilliant idea for women who can’t help the occasional slippage–and want to be prepared for its inevitability. Oh, Madonna. Look what you started…
A new favorite among our ranks are these Dagne Dover bags. Yes, the styling is classic (which isn’t usually what we all gravitate towards) but inside is pure magic: A water bottle pouch and an iPad sleeve–or laptop sleeve, in the bigger bags–make these more versatile and practical than you’d expect. Especially because they look like the kind of designer bags you’d pay three times more for at high-end department stores.
We were really happy to learn about With You Keepsake Lockets, which just launched this year. They’re the kinds of keepsake locket styles that normally retail for much, much more–and the message inscribed on each is a sweet reminder that whomever is featured on that little photo inside is always with you, in more ways than one. In fact, read the backstory behind the name–and bring tissues.
As mothers ourselves, we have to give a nod to the clever Juno breast pump handbag which does a great service to pumping mamas everywhere. Nothing we had to carry all our equipment in ever looked so chic. And yet this thing is a workhorse. Fortunately when it’s done, it converts to just a gorgeous satchel, and will still look stylish, even for you EBF-ers.
We’ve all loved the keepsake jewelry by mom Tania Condon since we featured her company Julian & Co. many years ago. But this year she launched a line of fine fashion jewelry that Kristen in particular is obsessed with, all crafted by hand and simply gorgeous. We like it so much, you’ll find in our own Cool Mom Picks indie shop.
The leather wrap bracelet trend hit us hard around here, as you might have noticed oh, by checking out any Instagram photo of us at all where our wrists are in view. But out top pick goes to Chan Luu, who should get full credit for popularizing the trend. Her bracelets are so beautifully made and hold up so well, the knock-offs don’t even come close. We warn you though: Buy one, and you’ll start wanting one in every color, for every season. Spring will be here soon.
Check out more of our Editors’ Picks of the Year all week long. And for more of the coolest jewelry and accessories, check out our Pinterest boards featuring Kristen’s Style Inspiration and Liz’s Style Inspiration.