Dressing for Summer

POLKA DOTS AT THE PALAIS-ROYAL

You know how sometimes a place becomes heavily photographed on Instagram and then when you actually go, it’s not quite as nice as everyone’s photos make it out to be? The Palais-Royal isn’t like that. I had actually come to this spot back in 2008 on my first trip to Paris (armed with just a digital camera) and remember loving the grandness of the old French courtyard and gardens set against the graphic pop of these raised columns at varied heights. So I knew I wanted to swing back through on this trip. Although I have to say, I don’t remember what I wore back in 2008 but this may be my favorite outfit I wore on our whole trip.

I actually bought this polka dot midi dress back in March for my girl’s trip to Charleston with my Mom and Sister (it makes me think of a cross between Daisy Buchanan from The Great Gatsby and Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman), but I knew it was destined to make an appearance in Paris too. I stepped it up a bit with these cute little polka dot flats too which I picked up as a replacement to a similar gingham pair that I wore to shreds over the past couple of years.

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5 WAYS TO WEAR A FLORAL MIDI DRESS

After such a great reaction to my last styling video (5 ways to wear a linen blazer) – and honestly just having so much fun doing it – I polled you all on IG Stories over the weekend to see if you’d like to see a Midi Dress or White Jeans next. The midi dress won by a mile and so I’m back! You can see the entire IGTV video here and shop each look below. Since a few pieces are older from my closet I linked the closest possible thing (and the YSL clutch you see in the first look is vintage). Hope this inspires you to try wearing your own midi dresses in new ways this summer!

*And a quick note on this specific dress – it was a bit of a splurge (although I waited to snag it on sale for 20% off) but honestly the fit is so flattering and as seen here it can be worn a million different ways. I found it to run a little small though. I’m wearing a size 4 here and definitely couldn’t have gone any smaller.. especially if you’re curvier up top you may want to size up. However it has smocking in the back so overall I find it really comfortable!

SHOP LOOK 1: CLASSIC DATE NIGHT

SHOP LOOK 2: GIRL’S NIGHT OUT

SHOP LOOK 3: WEEKEND ERRANDS

SHOP LOOK 4: PICNIC DATE

SHOP LOOK 5: UPTOWN BRUNCH

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THE BEST SUMMER BAGS TO SHOP NOW

Is it just me or is the selection of bags available in the world right now especially good? I’ve been making such a point of being really careful with how I shop so far this year – only buying things when I know that they’re filling a gap in my existing wardrobe or can be worn a handful of ways – but a fun summer bag definitely meets those qualifications. Even with a simple cotton dress or jeans and a tee, any one of these bags would completely make the outfit. My favorites are this seventies-style wooden bead bag, this fun gingham fabric bag, this colorful vintage clutch and this seersucker lined straw tote (which I just got in and it’s even better in person). It’s going to take quite a bit of self control to not scoop of an armful of these babies.

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5 WAYS TO WEAR A LINEN BLAZER

I’ve been seeing quick little styling videos pop up on Instagram lately and I love how kind of unpolished and in the moment they feel. So I decided to do a try-on session using one of my favorite new closet additions – this linen blazer. It’s the perfect neutral and lightweight so you can throw it on in a chilly office or in the morning before the temps warm up, and I like that it looks lived in so it’s casual enough for weekends too. Watch my full video here – and below I’ve linked each outfit so it’s easily shoppable.

(P.S. It looks like this blazer has sold out in a lot of sizes right now, but definitely check back because I find that they re-stock often enough you can usually grab your size – if not, this or this would be a good alternative)

LOOK 1:

LOOK 2:

LOOK 3:

LOOK 4:

LOOK 5:

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SUMMER STAYCATION STYLE

The Steele Maiden: Summer Staycation Style

Suddenly, it feels like we’ve hit fast-forward to the end of summer and this is the last time I’ll be wearing this type of outfit for awhile. It’s always bittersweet isn’t it? Perhaps even more so when I feel like I didn’t even get a chance to really take a proper vacation this Summer. But the postcard print on this dress almost made me feel like I did. And this little stretch of New York, all secret alleys and white picket fences certainly feel transportive. Let’s consider it a Summer staycation.

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At least I’m headed off to the lake this weekend to soak up the last of summer’s boat rides, tan lines and flamingo floats. And then, I’ll do my best to say goodbye to this season and get ready for the next. Is it too soon to say the “F” word? I honestly love Fall just as much as Summer (especially clothing-wise), but the thought of the season after that makes me shiver even on an August day. Is anyone else as strongly tied emotionally to seasons? I think it’s why I didn’t like Los Angeles life as much as so many others do. I like the wave of change every few months – whether or not I’m ready for it. Here it comes.

The Steele Maiden: Summer Staycation Style The Steele Maiden: Summer Staycation Style The Steele Maiden: Summer Staycation Style

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Fashion, Travel & Lifestyle. Based in NYC.