Style | Where to Shop for Affordable Statement Necklaces

This summer I’ve made it a point to really wear more of my jewelry. After all, I have tons of it that’s been sitting on my dresser, season after season, collecting dust. So I vowed to incorporate more statement necklaces into my #CasualSummer wardrobe. So far, so good. I often get asked, where to shop for affordable statement necklaces. After I run off the stores and sites most people are really impressed by the stores selections and prices. So today I’m sharing my top 5 go to stores for affordable statement necklaces.

Affordable Statement Necklaces

1. Thrift Stores. Of course I’m a fan of thrifting and thrifting statement necklaces is one of my favorite things to do. You just never know what you’re going to find! The prices, well it should go without saying that their prices are (often) unbeatable. Thrift stores are my 1st stop when looking for unique pieces, and it’s a great place to start if you’re just getting into the whole thrifting thing. So next time you need a new statement necklace, don’t count out the thrift stores!

2. Aldo Accessories Store. Physically shopping their store is like walking into a candy shop. There’s SO MUCH bling and prettiness to gawk at and the prices are just right for me. The Aldo Accessories Store (online and in store) is great for last minute shopping. I needed a piece to go with an outfit the day of an event. I walked in and within minutes I not only found this gorgeous necklace, but 2 packs of affordable studs as well. #WINNING  I also snagged this beauty a while back in store. I absolutely love it and it’s easily on of my favorite purchases to date.

3. H&M. It never fails; I always find at least one unique statement necklace when browsing the H&M jewelry section. Their necklaces start as low as $2.99 (when they’re on sale) and go up to $34.99. Whatever your budget or style, H&M has got you covered on statement necklaces!

4. eBay. I haven’t purchased a necklace form eBay in a while, but when I do need a new statement necklace I know I can find what I’m looking for there. The prices on eBay are excellent and all you have to do is type in “statement necklace” in the search engine and bam! You have endless options, styles, and options to buy (either auction or buy now). A lot of the necklaces I purchase from there are from China or somewhere else overseas, so I don’t expect the same quality as I would from other stores/sites. But that’s OK. Sometimes an expensive piece can be a good addition to your collection. And from time to time, the quality is actually better than I expect.

5. Nordstrom Rack. It’s no secret that this store is one of my faves for clothing. The last time I was in the store, I noticed their jewelry department was pretty good too. I purchased the necklace below and a few other items, all for under $30. My kind of prices, great quality designers, and a plethora of options. Their online selection is great too!

So tell me, where do you shop for affordable statement necklaces? Let me know so I can check out their selection!

Thanks for stopping by and be sure to sign up for my newsletter; I’ve got some fun things in store for those who subscribe. Also, feel free to add your latest outfit to my Personal Style Linkup. Until tomorrow, be blessed and stay safe…XO!


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** Linkups: Garay’s Treasures, More Pieces of Me, Spotlight of the Week **


Summer Thrifting Tips + Thrift Haul

I think I finally got my thrifting mojo back! Don’t get me wrong, I still love thrifting. But I have not been excited to thrift for months. Because I’m (still) going through a minimalist wardrobe (and lifestyle) phasing period, I haven’t been that into purchasing random pieces. And to be honest, that’s one thing I’m guilty of when thrifting. I thrift the most random pieces from time to time. 

Nonetheless, I have made up in my mind which items I need and I was able to thrift quite few of them. From housewares, books, accessories and clothing, thrifting for necessities has become easier because I’m clear on what I want and need. Here are a few quick and easy summer thrifting tips that have helped me lately.


1.  Create 3 columns for your thrift list – NEEDS, WANT & TRENDS TO TRY. I have done a thrift list for years, but making the 3 columns within the list has been a great addition. The items I need (i.e. black purse, long gold chain necklace and kitchen items) are the items I make a point to look for first. The want list, maybe consisting of new earrings, books and a robe are items I don’t need, but want to have. Trends to try are the items like overalls and fringe. I’ve seen them on others and I want to thrift the trend before committing to making a department store purchase for them. So, I add them to the list and see if I can thrift the items to give them a try. This section is the last section I shop for.

2. Throw it in the cart. If you see something you like or might, maybe, kind of like throw it in the cart! If you leave it on the rack and try to come back to it, I highly doubt it’ll be there when you come back. Throw it in the cart if it catches your eye and sort it out later.

3. Try stuff on. Another reason I say throw it in the cart is because when you try items on, you’ll be able to decipher what you want to keep or not. I always suggest trying items on when thrifting, even if it’s trying on a dress in the aisle over your clothes. Not all thrift stores allow returns/exchanges, so TRY IT ON in order to avoid that yucky buyers remorse feeling.

4. Reevaluate before purchasing. Once you’ve tried everything on and know what you’re going to purchase, reevaluate one more time to be absolutely sure. Check your list and check off the items you’ve found. Also, price check. When I reevaluate towards the end of my trip, I usually ask myself if I’d really pay “x” amount for an item. I then figure out 3 ways to wear or use the item.

5. Bring cash. Cash is king. Most thrift stores accept credit cards, but paying with cash is so much easier. It also helps keep you on target with your thrifting budget. If I bring $40 cash and I know that was my budget for the trip, I only spend that money. I don’t even reach in my purse for my card. It’s a mind thing, and it really does work!

** Check out my latest thrift haul. More items to show next week…be sure to check back!*

So tell me, what are some of your summer thrifting tips? What’re your fave items from my thrift haul? Let me know! 

Before I go, just wanted to let you know my next #ThriftWithNic event is in the process of being planned for the fall…YAY! I can’t wait to announce it, so be sure to sign up for my newsletter so you won’t miss a thing. Until tomorrow, be blessed and stay safe…XO!


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Style | What to Thrift this Spring

Spring is the perfect time to shop your local thrift stores for new wardrobe items. Once you’ve made room in your closet for a few new pieces, make a list of the items you plan to thrift for and start shopping! Thrifting for (certain) spring trends is a great way to test and build your thrifting skills. Still stuck and wondering, what to thrift for the season? Here are 6 things I think you should have on your spring thrift list.

What to Thrift This Spring

1. Trench Coats – I thrifted an amazing Calvin Klein trench from the Goodwill and to this day, I get compliments whenever I wear it. Not only is it a stunner, but it’s unique because of the color and cost a fraction of what I would have paid in a department store. #WINNING

2. Costume Jewelry – Do you revamp your jewelry when springtime rolls around? I sure do! Thrift stores are the first place I shop for vintage and costume jewelry additions. The prices are unbeatable and the selections are extremely unique.

3. Kimonos – Kimonos can be worn all year, but are more “on trend” during the spring and summer months. I guarantee there will be at least one vintage kimono at your local thrift store that you’ll have to purchase. Be sure to check the lingerie or sleepwear sections first. That’s where I usually find my kimono’s.

4. Sunglasses – I’m a sucker for a vintage pair of sunnies. Come to think of it, most of the sunglasses I own are thrifted. If you’re looking to add some style to your spring and summer outfits, try thrifting a pair of sunnies.

5. Tote Bags – I shared my must have spring handbags and tote bags made the list – I LOVE them! If you want to save some money and still find a cute tote, I suggest browsing the thrift before heading to the mall.

6. Graphic Tee’s – I don’t usually buy a lot of graphic tee’s, but when I do I check my local 2nd Avenue first. I especially like shopping the men’s section for this trend. They carry a plethora of  vintage sports and college tee’s!

 SO tell me, will you be thrifting any spring items this season? Let me know! 

Before you go, be sure to sign up for my newsletter! I have a lot coming up this season and I want to be sure you’re kept in the loop. You can also follow me on social media – I stay posting something there! Until tomorrow, be blessed and stay safe!


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** Linkups: Thrift Sisters **

#FearlessWoman Feature | Dionne of Styled by Dionne

I’ve had the pleasure of interviewing today’s #FearlessWoman on WNJ a time before. Dionne Dean is the brains and beauty behind Styled by Dionne and author of  ‘Make Your Closet Pay‘. Not only is her energy and smile infectious, but her wanderlust nature and passion for life is incredible. I admire her spirit, pay it forward mentality and above all, her tenacious work ethic. This thrift, vintage and “never pay retail” queen should definitely be on your radar, if she isn’t already. Enjoy her interview below; I’m sure you’ll be inspired to travel and live a fabulous life just as Dionne does!

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What’s a typical day for Dionne?

Is there such a thing as a “typical” day in the life of any entrepreneur, LOL! I wake around 4 or 5 to spend time in prayer. I find that if I don’t spend that time in prayer and meditation to get focused and centered on the purpose for my business, I’ll be rocked to and fro by the days events. Once the hubs is out the door, I head into my office and spend about an hour checking emails and social media. I work on getting all my eBay orders and thrift boxes together the night before so that I can be ready to hit the post office when it opens at 9:30. After the post office, I head to 3 or 4 thrift stores and am done by noon or 1 pm. If I have a client, I head to whichever store I’ve chosen for them an hour prior our appointment to set up their fitting room and alert the sales staff that I have a client coming. If not, I head home to upload items in eBay or spend time reaching out to potential clients.

Now, if’s it’s a morning when I have my ‘Good Morning Texas’ beauty segment, the day goes a bit different. I’m still up at 4 or 5, but I usually check on my models, go over my product details (pre-playing the segment in the bathroom mirror LOL) and selecting my outfit. I’ve tried getting my look together the night before, but I’m one of those people who has to see how I feel before I get dressed 😉

2. What inspired you to create Styled by Dionne & publish Make Your Closet Pay?

My undergraduate is in Clothing, Textiles and Merchandising and my goal was to become a buyer and travel the world purchasing beautiful clothing. However, after volunteering at various community agencies in Atlanta, I decided to switch gears. I moved to Chicago, completed an AmeriCorps Year of Service and got my Masters in Cultural and Educational Policy. I spent 6-7 years preparing high school, college-aged and graduate students for entry into the world of work and realized the one thing we didn’t spend enough time on was how to dress when you actually GOT the job. There was so much out there on interviewing skills and dressing for an interview, but nothing on building and maintaining your personal brand AT the job. So, I decided to launch a business styling new graduates, new entrepreneurs and basically anyone looking to re-brand themselves for promotion.

I published ‘Make Your Closet Pay‘ because I want people to help people get rid of the items their not wearing and reinvest that money into themselves, whether it be in paying off debt, going on that dream vacation or purchasing clothing that they WILL wear. I’ve had an eBay store since my early days in Atlanta and now that I use it to sell my thrifted items, I’ve used the profit to pay down debt, go home to London for 2 weeks and buy $45 Jimmy Choos!

Styled By Dionne Dean - Feature

3. Who are your top 3 women inspirations, famous or non-famous, and why?

My mommy. The older I get, the more I realize what an awesome woman my mother is. She was widowed at the age of 25 with 3 young children, in London, thousands of miles away from her family and friends in Jamaica and somehow just made it work. She met my dad in her late thirties and created this fabulosity that you see today 😉 But listening to her hard earned wisdom on life has made me a better wife and one day mother.

Violette Sproul, Founder of Femfessionals. I met her at a conference a few years back and was immediately in awe of her honesty when it came to managing business and life. I asked a question pertaining to timing and when to have children and she flat out told me, “There’s no good time…just do it. You’ll make it work somehow.” She’s been one of my mentors and sounding boards ever since.

My business coach, Kimberly Pitts is my idol. She is operates her business, marriage and motherhood in such excellence and is just an all around phenomenal woman. She is able to look at my business in such a different way and makes sure that I have all the tools necessary to be successful. She goes above and beyond what I pay her for because she believes in me understands that my success is her calling card. When I’m successful, SHE’s successful. Amazing woman

4. One piece of advice you have for women entrepreneurs?

Go for it! I chose this road because I saw something missing in the marketplace. I believe the world is as nuts as it is because the people who are called to make the necessary changes are chained to the wrong job. If you have a desire to something, do it. The world needs your gifts, talents and abilities!

Feature - Styled By Dionne Dean

5. Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

In 5 years, I’ll be traveling the world with my husband and babies buying beautiful pieces for my online store. I’ll have a show produced by the Property Brothers where we go to run down stores and smelly thrift stores and turn them into high end boutiques (think the British show ‘Mary Portas-Queen of Shops). Probably have a daytime Emmy and be back home in South Florida with a condo on Biscayne. My heart’s desire is to be an ex-Pat and spend half the year in London or Dusseldorf and the other half in South Florida.

Keep Up With Dionne

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Style | Thrift Tips from the Experts

I’m always ready and willing to share thrift tips with anybody! So when my blogger buddy Jen asked me to join with a few other thrifty bloggers for a thrift tip post, of course I jumped at the opportunity! It’s great to get together with fellow bloggers and talk about style and fashion, but I always get a thrill when we can chat about thrift shopping too! Not everyone is a thrifter, and I get that. But there are some great thrift tips and tricks, very easy to pick up, that will help enhance your wardrobe.

Read on to meet each thrifter, see an outfit from her own closet styled with almost entirely thrifted pieces, and one of her secrets to thrifting success. Stop on over to each of their blogs to find even more of their secrets that land them unbelievable style finds for a fraction of the price and ten-fold the fun.


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Events | Thrift With Nic in 2015

Happy Thrifty Thursday, friends! Just wanted to briefly share a few thrifty things I have coming up for the year. I successfully hosted my 1st Thrift With Nic event last year and I had a ball! I was able to meet and shop with new thrifters, teach a few thrifting tricks and a lot more. I also did my Thrift With Nic tour back in 2013 and that too was a success. I don’t know why I didn’t do more events last year, but onward and upward to 2015! It’s time to gear up for some new Thrift with Nic events! This year I plan to continue teaching and sharing my passion for thrifting with you. I want to thrift with you and I want you to show and tell me the best thrift stores in your area.

thrift with nic events - whitney nic james… 

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Style | Thrift Shopping Tips for the New Year

Happy Thrifty Thursday! Would you believe it if I told you that I have not been hardcore thrifting in months? Well, believe it. It’s a sad reality and I can’t believe it myself. I’m actually seeing the positive effect that it’s having on my bank account, so I won’t complain. 😉 So in making an honest effort to be smart about my thrifting in 2015, I have 5 thrift shopping tips for the new year. Hopefully they’ll be as helpful to you as they’ve been for me over the past few months.

Thrift Shopping Tips

1. Set a budget. Even if you plan to only go thrifting once a season, set a budget. Thrifting can easily become an expensive habit. Most thrifted items are less expensive than retail items, but buying a lot of inexpensive items just because you can isn’t the best idea. You can easily spend way more thrifitng than shopping at retailers. Trust me, I know…LOL! It’s not the smartest thing for your wallet. So my #1 tip is to set a thrifting budget and stick to it.

2. Set a schedule. This has become much easier for me, but it took me awhile to get here. I’m always down for a good shopping trip, especially if it involves a Goodwill or a Value Village. But I’ve had to learn how to plan my thrifting trips. Unless there’s a new location I want to check out or I’m really searching for something specific and can’t find it the first go round, back to back thrifting excursions will be limited. Decide to thrift once a month, two times a month, or even once a season. Whatever your budget and closet allows, start there.

2015 thrift shopping tips

3. Be real with yourself. Do you really need another plaid blazer or another “amazing” statement necklace?  I struggle with this because to me, you always need another statement necklace or another vintage cardigan/topper. But the more I look in my closet I realize that I barley wear the ones I have! I suggest going through your closet and making 3 piles; what you wear, what you can’t fit anymore, and what needs to be fixed. The items that you wear are your keepers, the ones that don’t fit anymore to be given away, and whatever needs to be fixed (or cleaned) needs to go the cleaners/tailor. This method works on all the clothes in your closet, not just the thrifted pieces…. 

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Year in Review + Happy Holidays

Hey friends! There’s only a few days left until Christmas. Are you excited? I know I am. I can’t wait to spend time with my family and of course, eat some good food! 😉 Before I go off and enjoy some holiday festivities, I wanted to pop in and do a brief year in review of the blog.

2015 was a great year for WNJ! The blog has grown so much, thanks to your readership and support. I’ve been able to step outside my comfort zone by hosting a few events and collaborating with like minded bloggers. I’ve also been blessed to contribute my writing to some amazing websites/blogs and cover some pretty amazing events in the DMV area. I’m very grateful to have been able to do all of that in such a short amount of time.

Year in Review

Oprah’s Life You Want DC Tour // Blog Ambassador for Blogger Week // 2014 Greater Washington Goodwill Fashion Show

As I look forward to 2015 I see nothing but continued growth much success. Thank you all for the comments, emails, and messages this year. You’ve helped make this blog what it is – a place where women can learn to live a stylish, budget friendly, and inspiring lifestyle.

Again, thank you, thank you, THANK YOU! I wish you all joyous holiday and a blessed New Year. Until 2015, be blessed and stay safe…xo!


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