Susan Shockley of Tom Tom Boutique on Free-Spirited Style

Susan Shockley, owner of the Lewes-based Tom Tom Boutique, marches to the beat of her own drum around the First State.

Define your style:

I have a free-spirited aesthetic that mixes different artistic expressions into an eclectic style.

The trick to separating your style from Tom Tom wares:

I don’t. There are a lot of Mini-Mes out there dressed in my signature style. Tom Tom has an abundant customer base that we’ve acquired from word of mouth. Out-of-towners always make it their first stop when they get to Lewes.

Must-keep items:

Artsy second-skin T-shirts by AMB and palazzo pants. I consider them my everyday foundations, and whatever I layer over them is icing on the cake.

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Closet hog:

Definitely shoes! Fashion color trends shift with the seasons, year after year, and therefore my collection of shoes keeps growing with each shift. I own a ton of the basics; however, some of my favorites are shoes and boots in yellow, red, kiwi, turquoise and orange—gotta think outside the box.

Finishing touches:

Properly picked, jewelry can bring an entire outfit together to complement its color and style.

Far-out fashion:

I’m a ’60s baby, so I think a part of me is still hanging on to the Beatlemania era. I still own my first pair of Levi’s bell-bottoms, not because they fit but because I am sentimentally attached. Truth be told, I still love moccasins, macramé, love beads, white go-go boots…and anything with fringe.

Style icon:

Iris Apfel, who was born in 1921. I have seen her at New York trade shows a few times and am always in awe. She continues to live as a fashion icon.

Vintage vogue:

It happens to be one of my greatest passions. When I was in my 30s, a Chicago Tribune editor followed me around from yard sales to thrift stores and published a “trash to treasure” article about me. It’s great to reduce, reuse and recycle.

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Tom Tom Boutique

Closet regrets:

I regret purging so many authentic concert tees from years gone by.

Must-have makeup:

I don’t discriminate when it comes to makeup as long as the formula works, but I do favor Mac, Sephora and Lush.

302 go-to shops—besides Tom Tom:

Boutique W in Rehoboth Beach and Magnolia Rifle in Ocean View.

You never leave home without:

Wallet, cellphone and, most importantly, lipstick.

If money were no object:

I’d buy a lot of A.S. shoes, Krista Lawson designs and real estate for future security for my kids.

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Preferred designer:

I have a background in design and manufacturing and designed everything from styles and dye lots to event buttons. I have great respect for designers such as Cynthia Ashby, Krista Lawson, Heydari and Alembika, who take their vision of designs straight from a sketch. These are true designers.

Day versus evening:

I also own Collections of Comfort, which represents and sells designer collections to specialty stores nationwide. I’ll jazz it up a notch for the evening, but otherwise, my work and evening wear are close to the same—always comfortable yet stylish. One should never compromise comfort for style.

Related: Mona Parikh Embraces a Sleek, Professional Style in Wilmington

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