Dressing for Summer

CASUAL NEUTRALS + 2ND HALF OF SUMMER PLANS

I knew at the start of this year that it was going to be a big one in terms of my full time job – with the busiest season being this summer. Which can make it hard to feel as carefree as the rest of the world seems to with restrictions finally loosened up and summer vacations in full swing. That being said – I’m excited about the work I’m doing and am trying my best to squeeze in some fun moments wherever I can.

Day trips out to the beach. Hopefully making it back to the lake. Working my way through my summer reading list and making time for my new embroidery hobby. Planning a weekend getaway with my sister for late August. Basically eeking out any spare moments I can during the rest of July and August for a bit of relaxation and enjoying summer weather. And I expect to be wearing this simple, button-front midi dress for much of it. It’s light as air and smocked in the back so it’s super comfortable.

If you’re reading this and are in a less busy season of life – savor summer for me, will you?

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A WEEK OF REAL OUTFITS: 5-21-21

I’m sure a lot of you felt the same, but this spring – after a year of pandemic life – my usual interest in putting together outfits was all but gone. And then last week I took a few days off work, the weather hit a consistent 75 degrees and all of a sudden I was excited to get dressed again. The results were 7 days of outfits that I couldn’t wait to put on and go out into the world wearing. Talk about a mood booster. Hoping you all have a sunny weekend ahead and are inspired to dust off some real outfits of your own.

These outfits are a mix of things already in my closet and a few new pieces. In the case that something is no longer available, or vintage, I linked a similar item.

WORK FROM HOME DAY:

Beach Boys T-Shirt, Vintage Skirt, Statement Earrings, Sandals

MARGARITA HAPPY HOUR:

White T-Shirt, Bag (old from Anthropologie), Polka Dot Shorts (gifted), Sandals (old from Marc Fisher)

MID-WEEK ZOOM CALLS:

Cardigan and Shell, Jeans, Gingham Heels (old from Talbots)

PICNIC IN THE PARK:

Dress (gifted), Bag (old from Talbots), Stud Earrings, Sandals (old from Talbots)

FRIDAY DATE NIGHT:

Earrings (old from Lulu Frost), Vintage Silk Top, Jeans (old from H&M), SJP Heels

AFTERNOON AT THE MUSEUM:

Suede Jacket, Grey T-Shirt, Printed Midi Skirt, Sandals + Bag (Old from Talbots)

DINNER AL FRESCO:

Black Dress, Hoop Earrings, Leopard Heels

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NAP DRESSES AND THE START OF SUMMER

I took a couple of days off of work for a long birthday weekend – which just so happened to coincide with the nicest stretch of weather we’ve had so far this year. Coupled with the new vaccine mask mandate and it really felt the whole city was outside celebrating alongside me. Which made it easy to cross quite a few things off my post-pandemic bucket list. Explore the Upper West Side, visit the Natural History Museum, eat at the Central Park Boathouse and get a mani/pedi – check, check and check!

On Saturday we spent some time picnic-ing in Washington Square Park and it really felt like the start of summer. I was happy to break out this new blue dress for the occasion. Blame it on Bridgerton’s Regency-era costumes and Hill House’s infamous “nap dresses” – both well timed for a global pandemic audience – but these smocked, empire waist, puff sleeve dresses are everywhere this summer. This floaty version is from Few Moda – an online retailer that sells clothing made in the same factories as brand’s like Reformation and Zimmerman, but offered at a fraction of the price when you subscribe to a membership. I was a little bit skeptical but they sent me this dress and I can attest to the fact that the quality is great and I would have gladly paid $54 instead of the $200+ that those other brands would charge. Especially on items like this that are a bit trendier. And if I just so happen to be able to wear it from for a picnic and also for a nap? All the better.

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MY SPRING/SUMMER WISHLIST

I know I always say this but I really can’t believe it’s almost May. Isn’t it still 2020? Time is funny these pandemic days. I have a lot to look forward to this month – my second vaccine shot, my birthday, warmer weather, a couple of days off work, a weekend at the lake. All in all it feels like high time I dusted off my ‘real wardrobe’ and added a few new pieces, to be mixed and matched from now through August. Below, what’s caught my eye.

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SUMMER TO FALL STYLE

In my mind it’s somewhere around June 15th. But in reality, this is the last weekend of August. This time of year always feels a little bittersweet to me, but perhaps never more so than this year. I mean, I never even made it to the beach.. how can summer be over?! And the looming uncertainty of what’s to come this winter has me shivering on a 90 degree day.

But, on the other hand – I truly love the feeling of fall and September always feels like a fresh start. So I’m trying my best to give in to the time warp that is 2020 and just lean into the excitement I feel over the change of seasons.

As it were – this outfit has a bit of a foot in each season. A floaty summer dress. A new bag that is sure to be a fall staple. In a couple of months time, I’ll pair this same dress with a cozy, oversized sweater and leather riding boots.

Until then – I’ll be doing my damnedest to soak up every last moment of summer. I hope you do the same.

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The Steele Maiden © 2012

Fashion, Travel & Lifestyle. Based in NYC.