I look forward to summer months in advance. I love it all, the feeling of warm sun on my skin while I run outside, going wake-boarding at the lake, and going backpacking with my family. But summer's definitely not only about the great outdoors, this season's clothes get their own spotlight! Finally being able to wear shorts, flowy tanks, strappy sandals, and sundresses: best feeling ever. While I live in the San Francisco Bay Area where the weather is known to get a little chilly, I still strive to rock the beautiful clothes I feel represent summer. Here is a favorite summer outfit of mine, featuring some Lydali products I'm currently craving!
Gown by the Sea dress: ModCloth
The key to every outfit is a fabulous centerpiece, and so me, the best ones are the most basic (all the better to accessorize with my dear!). I fell in love with this casual dress when I first saw it on ModCloth's website. I'm a pretty simple girl, so I love the fairly plan cut and solid colors, but this dress is also a little fun; the splash of coral on the bottom is a great way to add some cheer to your outfit, and is a nice warm color for summer. The sweetheart neckline and sheer maxi skirt also add interesting elements. This dress is nice and simple without sacrificing style or being too boring, and can be dressed up or down for multiple summer occasions. The best of all worlds in my book!
Coral Ruffle Jacket: Windsor
But what would the perfect dress be without the perfect jacket? I actually grew up as a tomboy, playing soccer on an otherwise all-boys team and spending a lot of time climbing trees, so if you would have asked me back then if I would ever come to love a flowy ruffled coral jacket, I would have said said "What's coral?" followed closely by "Ew." However, being the mature, fashionable woman that I now am, I see this jacket as a versatile, gorgeous addition to this ensemble. The thing I love about this cardigan is that it's light enough to work during the summer when you want that little something extra, but don't need extra bulk. Again, simple enough to be dressed up or down, yet pretty and unique enough to make a statement.
Twist Upon a Star Sandal: ModCloth
I searched forever before finding sandals that I felt were right for me, and these are completely perfect. For a long time I didn't like sandals at all, and wore boat shoes virtually every day during the summer (and was teased for pairing even girly sundresses with the more clunky, sturdy shoes!), but I love the brown braided style of these sandals. I wanted something that would walk off the beach and into a restaurant in, and these certainly do the trick. While they would look great with denim shorts and a Plain White T, they also pair well with this delicate and bright dress and jacket.
Chevron Wooden Ring: Lydali.
Who doesn't love jewelry that makes a statement? These angular wooden rings are designed and carved by hand in Tanzania, and each ring has a unique look. For every piece of jewelry sold, Nyumbani has a tree planted in Tanzania to restore forests and natural growth in the country. The warmer brown coconut wood ties in well with the sandals and the wristlet, adding a unique and eye-catching yet not-too-flashy element to this, and any outfit.
African Violet Earrings: Lydali
These earrings sell like hotcakes, and we can see why: they look so delicious! They are hand cut from brass by Smith Jewelry based in Cape Town, South Africa. All the jewelry the make is handmade and designed by Anna Raimondo, a South African native, who draws inspiration from local materials and beautiful surroundings. With the more recent trend of top-knot buns making a splash, dangly earrings such as these looks great, and can make more of a statement with your hair pulled back a bit.
Bullet and Stone Bangle: Lydali
I personally like to pair the delicate with the edgy, which makes this thick gold bangle a perfect pairing with the African Violet earrings. This natural stone and brass cuff is hand-hammered from the brass of bullet casings and bombshells that have been melted down and turned into something beautiful. Crafted by home-based artisans in Cambodia, the sale of these bangles help unemployed and under-employed artisans to have meaningful work and reliable incomes. What's not to love?
Snakeskin Wristlet: Lydali
I had my eye on this the moment I was first introduced to Lydali. The warm toned snakeskin wristlet is perfectly sized to hold everything you need for a night out - credit cards, keys, cell phone, and a gloss or two. It's a truly unique piece, measuring 8.25" wide by 5" tall and made of snakeskin and leather with a brass zipper closure. It was created by Bersatu, a social enterprise founded in Bali, Indonesia with a mission to provide income generating activities for Indonesians through the creation of simple, chic, Bali-inspired jewelry and accessories. These snakeskin clutches are specifically handmade by Herman, a leatherworker in Bali who is employed by Bersatu. Herman's leather making business currently supports him and his family and employs three other people in their community. The snakeskin wristlet is definitely a staple item in any closet!
Whether you're spending the rest of your summer tanning at the beach, hiking through the wilderness, or going out with your friends on warm nights, dress in clothes that fit the part and remind you of how fantastic the weather is! I generally wear neutral colors, and I love thick sweaters (let's just say I'm kind of a winter-y girl) but during the summer I love the light feel of flowy fabric and the happy look of warm and bright colors, and I love this outfit because it accomplishes those things without compromising my personal style. These are the things I'm currently craving.