After you've scouted out those new velvet Mary Janes, put a leopard print coat on your wish list and ordered that new pair of wide-leg pants, it's time to think about other add-ons — the accessories that can instantly give your wardrobe a whole new outlook. Here are some stylish extras to think about adding this fall.
—Embellished handbags. More is more this year when it comes to that all-important utilitarian essential that is not at all basic anymore. Yes, there are still lots of workhorse totes still out there, but the decorative details that adorn many handbags this fall are setting the trend. Think lots of fur, metallic hardware, exotic reptile textures, embroidered motifs and graphic prints. Bucket bags are big, but satchels and cross-body silhouettes as well as "mini" handbags make it hard to pick just one. But after all, most of us have to admit, just like shoes, handbags are another accessory we rarely skimp on.
—Choker necklaces. With the '90s retro influence inspiring many designers this fall, the choker is making a big comeback. From chunky gold link cords to Victorian velvet ribbons, this jewelry trend is one of the best ways to show off a bare neckline thanks to the popularity of the off-the-shoulder tops that continue to be a fashion favorite. Layer your pendants with a new choker for even more charm.
—Oversized earrings. Another result of the open necklines and bare shoulders that many designers favor for fall, the larger than life earrings are perfect complements just like the choker necklaces. The newest earrings dangle in sculptural geometric shapes and linear designs that are long on style. Ear cuffs add a punkish note, and single statement earrings are still popping up on the runways. Top them off with a sleek topknot.
—Bold rings. The statement cocktail ring has been a stunning addition to our accessory wardrobes for the last few years, but as the clothes become more dramatic in silhouette, so does the jewelry, and the rings are no exception. These rocks rock!
—Wide belts. Since the clothes may be a little bit on the big and bolder side this fall, cinching in the waist is the focus of many of the season's jackets and dresses. Think corset styles that lace up to tame these extra wide belts are definitely a focal point that may or may not provide much comfort. But if the thick belts just make you feel stuffed, don't worry. There are lots of skinny wrap belts out there too. Just be sure to try them on for size first.
—Jeweled pins. The brooch is back, bejeweled with colorful stones and pearls. Whether you have an art-deco treasure from your grandmother or you buy a glittering new costume piece, these pins are lapel ready and a personality piece you'll wear for years.
—Silk scarves. The longer pashmina scarf has been a classic accessory for years now, but this fall is a great time to make a switch to smaller silk squares or "neckerchiefs" that twist around the neck in a bold, colorful print. Tuck them into sweaters or jackets, and wear them as an alternative to a necklace. Another twist on the silk scarf: long, skinny scarves tied into bows.
—Furry extras. Whether it's a fur collar, a fur stole or a scarf with furry tails, the plush stuff is an elegant addition to coats, jackets and sweaters. In jewel-tone colors like burgundy and emerald or cobalt blue, these lush accessories provide a touch of glamour to any outfit.
—Savvy socks. Tights have always been a winter warm-up for legs, but this fall, the socks are stepping out on designer runways. Cozy ankle-length socks are paired with Mary Janes and pumps giving high heels a youthful appeal.
—Statement gloves. Get ready. The latest gloves are much more than winter must-haves. They are making statements all on their own — true arm candy with bold artistic adornments in stand-out colors. Stack cuff bracelets over them and enjoy the cold weather ahead.
(SET IMAGE) smo090616adAP.jpg (ENDIMAGE) (SET CAPTION) Bigger is better when it comes to accessories this fall. Cocktail ring from fall collection at H&M. (www.hm.com) (END CAPTION)
To find out more about Sharon Mosley, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.