Dresses + heels. This one occasionally makes the feminist in me want to punch the Universe in the face, but for serious, strangers treat me differently -- more respectfully and graciously -- when I bother to put on a well-fitting dress and a pair of heels. This leads to my feeling like some kind of adult human being, which is an elusive thing for me so I sorta bask in it when it happens.
Cute bras that fit really well. Okay, so I'm busty. You might think this is auto-awesome. But with the wrong bra, it's less sexy and more saggy/slouchy. For years I thought that my only two choices were to a) wear a cute, padded, boob-wrangling bra that fits poorly and makes me uncomfortable or b) wear a huge, full-coverage, unpadded bra that technically fits but makes me feel like an old lady. And then I spent two hours trying on everything in Macy's lingerie department that seemed vaguely cute and me-sized, regardless of price. I tried a few different band and cup sizes with each brand and model, 'cause even with sizes that are ostensibly measured in something so concrete as inches, there was noticeable variance. And I found a couple bras that are cute and fit me, both, and I splurged on them and brought my lunch to work a few extra times over the next few weeks. They make my clothes fit better. Seriously, best time & money ever spent.
Weird jewelry. My day-to-day jewelry collection is a conglomeration of odd things I've made wearable (like old keys, transistors, and bits of ribbon), geeky handmade things (like my glass squid pendant or typewriter key earrings), and artsy things I inherited from my mother (think deco nouveau). I love feeling creative, supporting independent artists, and wearing things that have stories and memories behind them. And I suppose this is a little postmodern of me, but I love featuring the beauty of everyday objects. Things don't have to be new or expensive to be pretty! And when I wear weird jewelry as ornaments to classy work outfits, I feel less like The Man.
Chunky boots. I know, this is so 1995 of me, but I heart my Docs and riding boots. Steel toes and one-inch heels make me feel like I can take on the world.