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ALL IN THE DETAILS: Key To My Heart

It’s no secret that details sometimes make or break an outfit. Would we really care much for Dorothy’s gingham dress if it weren’t for those dazzling red shoes? Would Cinderella’s “rags to riches” transformation have been anything but a normal, blue ball gown if the fairy godmother hadn’t also included the glass slippers? My guess is probably not. Everyone in the world could own the same piece of clothing, but the general styling of the outfit, the details people chose, could make it virtually unrecognizable.

On the flip side of that, sometimes it’s the most minimalistic or even sentimental pieces that make an outfit special, whether to you or anyone else. That’s what I loved about this Fashionista’s look. It was the impeccable shine on her patent leather shoes that made me chase her down for a photo. Everything about the outfit is comprised of wardrobe basics: a ribbed turtleneck, the peeping of a white button-up, lightly printed gray trousers and shiny oxford shoes. She looks so comfy and so chic it’s almost not fair. To me, the shoes were the detail worth writing about, and I was perfectly prepared to do so until I asked her about her key necklace as I was shooting. I thought perhaps it was her house key, but it is far more interesting than that.

The necklace is from an organization known as The Giving Key. The jewelry sold includes keys engraved with inspiring words. The idea is to get one that speaks to you personally and, when the time is right, give the key to someone who needs or deserves the message even more than so yourself. Then you have him or her do the same in the future. What began as a tiny “pay it forward” project has evolved into a full-blown charitable operation. Partnered with several charities, The Giving Key hires those transitioning out of homelessness.

Fashion should always be about putting yourself in the items that make you feel the best. But feeling good isn’t just physical! Sometimes delighting in the tiniest details of the look for sentimental value is a happy reminder throughout the day of something unique to you. The key is cool, has a vintage vibe and adds something a little quirky and eclectic to a really put together ensemble. But, more importantly, wearing it makes her happy because of the story behind it and that pride for the piece was obvious when talking to her.

How To: There isn’t much to explain here. Trends are fun and they push the boundaries of fashion and our own personal styles more often than not. However, personal aesthetics and wearing pieces you truly enjoy is one of the greatest forms of self expression out there.