Summer Essentials

What is the essence of summer? To me, it’s this look by Olivia Palermo. Normally buttoned up and on the edge of fashion, she breaks free with this beautiful, breezy white dress. She trades her tweed in for white ruffles, her dark shades for see-through cat eyes, and her pointy toe pumps for kick-up-your-heels flats. And in doing so, she ushers in my list of summertime essentials. Style in the summer is all about letting go, showing some skin, and embracing light, bright colors. I also like to change out my stuffy black bag for something woven or canvas and my go-to studs and watch for more delicate charms and an armfuls of bracelets. Everything about my essentials list is Olivia-inspired: free-form shapes, natural fabrics, and sunshine-calling blushes, tans, and whites.

1. Equipment Signature Blouse: I adore everything about summer, but especially breaking out of structure into more flowy forms…like this breezy, blushing blouse. It’s a go-to piece for layering at the office or letting go at the beach. Pair your free-form with just about anything, from cutoffs to pencil skirts.

2.  Cleobella Indah Tote: Canvas and basketweave, light-toned leathers and blushing stripes. Trade in your luggage brown leather or basic black satchel for something lighter and brighter in the bag department. This bag brings bohemian charm with its natural fiber canvas, nautical whipstitching, and bewitching set of pom-pom charms.

3.  Mes Demoiselles Marg Floral Skirt: Adore the fleur. Florals are all about town this summer. Their undeniable feminine appeal makes them the perfect break-out print for the season, whether you choose your bouquet in a short, pant or easy-breezy skirt like this one.

4.  DITA Amant Sunglasses: Aviators and Ray Bans aside, I’m looking to splurge on some sassy cat eye shades. I love the way Olivia’s patterned sunglasses add a splash of pattern to a neutral outfit, and I also adore the mod appeal of these see-through plastic frames.

5.  Versace Strapped Back Zip Sandals: Summer indulgence. A strappy sandal brings the steam to any look, be it summer wedding, cocktails under the stars, or just to bring a little sultry to the Friday morning office. Pair with va-va-voom dresses or be more demure with cropped white pants and a flowy button-up. Look for this new neutral to replace last season’s nude pumps and peeptoes.

6. L’AGENCE Cosmic Set Necklace: Dainty and delicate, this L’Agence necklace sits pretty on your collarbone, setting off a summer tan and all of the season’s open necklines. Sweet, vintage-inspired pieces are definitely topping my summer essentials list.

7. VINCE Hand Knit Pullover: The chunky knit first made its appearance last summer as a revamped classic. This summer they storm the summer scene again. Look for knits in creamy whites with details like dropped shoulders and oversized trims to pair with color-drenched shorts or print-filled pants.

8.  Tibi Eyelet Embroidered Dress: Just like Olivia. This Tibi dress is as charming as they come. With eyelet fabric, embroidered details, and a breezy cut, it’s a summertime pleasure to throw it on with flats and your favorite bag for a walk in the park (or a weekend BBQ or date night).

9.  Ash Infini Star Studded Camo Loafers: So fly for the Fourth of July. These star-spangled smoking loafers replace your winter flats with their summertime flair and fun camo print. Invest in them for paring with cutoffs, rolled chinos or colorful skinnies.