January 27, 2009

Summer Top Ten

OK, two posts on warm weather within a week of each other, and a snowstorm predicted for tonight. Can you tell I'm sick of winter?

I relish living in the northeast because of the seasons. I love the autumn leaves, the winter wonderland snow, the spring thaw, and best of all, the mid-May warm-up. There's no comparison to that first day on which the air is clear, the sun is warm, there's a light breeze, no humidity, and you head outside to your car, realizing on the way that you don't need it. You toss it in the back seat, and drive to work with the windows open, feeling a natural breeze on your arms for the first time since October.

The iced coffees become appealing again, we start to eat lighter, and life gets a little lighter. And of course, our clothes change. But the change isn't only in weight and coverage; everyone's style gets a little more laid-back in the warmer months. Somehow structure and trendiess feel right in fall and winter. But in the spring and summer, the materials are lighter, the cuts are more relaxed, and I personally move away from the trends for a bit and go for the classics.

The classic clothing I wear in spring and summer hasn't changed much from what I wore growing up, since I always go for my favorite staples that feel light, keep me cool and have staying power for several seasons. Keeping up with trends is an activity I use in the winter to keep me interested in getting dressed beyond avoiding hypothermia, and it goes well with the edginess of the seasons. But once late April hits, I'm all about the basics.

In recently moving and taking stock of my wardrobe, I realized I'll need to replace a few of these. So I'm making a list of my ten favorite options for spring and summer, and I'll keep an eye out for spring preview sales and coupons as opportunities to buy them. Buying out of season usually gets you a great deal, and making lists keeps you from making too many impulse purchases.

1) 3/4-sleeve Oxford shirts. Definitely white, probably a pink and a blue also, definitely the Horse. Soft cotton, comfortable structure and a classic look.

Ralph Lauren Solid Cotton Oxford, $89

2) Fresh polos. Short-sleeved, two-button, collars down. Navy, light pink, hot pink, sky blue, yellow, kelly green, red, black, white, orange - check. Looking for: light green, royal blue, maroon. Definitely some of the Horse, maybe a Lilly thrown in. Absolutely no A&F.

Lilly Pulitzer Rugby Stripe Polo, $68

3) Linen pants. Got white, would like beige. Traditional Easter - Labor Day rules apply.

Robert Rodriguez linen pants, $119.99

4) White linen/cotton/eyelet skirts. Never work appropriate, but a great jeans substitute for a night out. Pair with a polo or deep-V tee and flops for a casual look.

Alvin Valley Cotton Miniskirt, $99.99

5) Solid sundresses. Florals are fine, and I've got black linen. This summer I'm looking into everything linen, solid navy, green and pink.

White House | Black Market Drapeneck Cotton Dress, $148

6) Long-sleeve tissue tees. The best coverup on the boat - sun coverage without warmth.

J.Crew Perfect Fit Tissue Tee, $24.50

7) Tailored chino shorts. Modest hem (7" - 3" at the least), neutral colors. To wear with Oxfords, polos, tanks...

J. Crew Twill 5" shorts, $39.50

8) Denim jacket. To wear on weekends when the sun goes down.

American Eagle Vintage Denim Jacket, $49.99

9) Twill skirts. Dress up for work, down for play.

Vineyard Vines Twill Skirt, $68

10) New aviators. The $8 ones from Chinatown last maaaaybe one summer!

Kirra White Aviators, $15.50

Cheers to summer - only five months away!