In recent seasons, designers have been playing with contrasting textures and patterns to create works of art unlikely to be duplicated by others. The pinnacle of this trend is Preen’s showstopping dress from its S/S13 show made from cotton/python/watersnake/leather. At £1,480, this piece is not within budget for most but fortunately an easier way to dip into the mixed media frenzy is through accessories. In fact, Preen designers Justin Thornton and Thea Bregazzi have done another collaboration with Aldo Rise which includes a (faux) snakeskin and leather heels for £125. The best part is that you can choose designs based on your personal style whether it be boldly graphic like the Duro Olowu for jcp handbag ($50) or romantic like the one-off “Cinderella” necklace by Estonian designer Krista Raak. My advice when looking for a bargain is to visit your local independently owned shops. Case in point: while on a recent trip to North Carolina, I spotted the cute cork and paint splatter clutch below from Hayley’s Boutique in Raleigh which the owner had hand-picked for its uniqueness.