Summer weather in Seattle can be fickle, but August is usually the height of warmth and beauty in our fair city. You can count on blue skies, lots of outdoor festivities, and Seattleites naturally complaining that it is way too hot. It’s the perfect time of year to plan a party, taking advantage of the hot city nights to enjoy your friends and celebrate summer at its best. Here are three of my favorite ways to spend a summer evening, each paired with a look that will help make you win the next barbecues best-dressed award.
A couple of years ago, after a long weekend of working in the garden, my husband and I were inspired to show off all of our hard work and threw together a garden party in 24 hours. The impromptu party was one of our best we have ever given, maybe because the spontaneous nature made it easy and fun. I stationed our red wheelbarrow to the corner of the garden by our giant blue hydrangea bushes and filled it to the brim with ice, champagne, beer and wine. A table full of easy hors d’oeuvres filled up a white table clothed outdoor table and I hung round solar powered lanterns in the trees and scattered votives around the garden. The party music played and the festivities made for a very fun weekday party.
For the party, I went for a long floral skirt and top that I wore while barefoot (I wanted to be comfortable at my own party!) This is one of my favorite looks for summer because it is dressed up, but not. This Exclusive for Intermix Aubrey Floral Print Maxi Dress has the same vibe—and it is on sale, so grab one while you can. If you are not the bare feet type, wear something pretty but comfortable enough to wander about on grass or stone patios, like these Splendid Carly Lace Up Sandals. We are so lucky in Seattle to have so many great local jewelry designers. Business owner, fashion blogger, and local jewelry designer Kirsty of Lucia K. Jewelry creates beautiful pieces that are delicate and strong, edgy and chic. Her Gold Arrow Earrings are the perfect compliment to the flowing dress, so pull your hair back and show them off. Another favorite local jewelry designer, Juliet Roger, has these amazing carnelian & gray silk bracelets that I would stack in threes or fives. Pop on a pair of Ray-Ban Icons Mirrored sunglasses until the sun goes down.
August also brings the city’s annual Seafair celebration, and with it come parties and get togethers both on and off the water. If you are lucky enough to own a boat or know someone that does, it is the perfect place to see the city, and you can make a really fun evening of stopping off at various docks to grab a drink or dinner while you are out on the water. Being a good boater (and guest) means you know not to wear black sole shoes on a boat, ever—and skip the pointy heels while you are at it. This simple rule doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice style, especially since cool sneakers are a fashion mainstay these days. It’s easy to pull off a chic nautical look with a summer in France appeal, while avoiding looking like you are in costume. The trick is being understated, and it’s a classic look that is pure summer. I am completely into cropped boot cut pants, and since Frame is one of my favorite denim lines, I think the Le Crop Mini Boot in Blanc are perfect. Dresses over pants are super chic, and adding this pop of color off the shoulder poplin dress from J.Crew is a great way to wear a cropped flare jean. You could wear a great classic Stan Smith sneaker with this look, but how about an unexpected pair of silver Shelly London Emma Platform Oxfords instead? Cord necklaces and chokers are still big, and this Balenciaga’s Maillon Metal Clip Necklace shows this trend perfectly. Keeping the silver accents, this little Zara silver cropped bomber is just right should it get cool out on the water. Add a stylish Alexander McQueen Skull Silk scarf to your neck or triple wrap and knot it around your wrist. And don’t forget an awesome hat; this denim Marissa baseball cap will keep your hair in place and the sun off your face. Rarely do I get as obsessed with a makeup item as much as I am with the Marc Jacobs Beauty Highliner Gel Eye Crayon Eyeliner in Midnight in Paris. It’s creamy enough to smudge, then stays put all day, until you take it off. It is simply gorgeous, and completes this great look for a day out on the water.
Good news for those who are not in love with the idea of camping; “glamping” or glamour camping, is a big thing, and it’s expanded the possibilities of exploring the great outdoors for even the most anti-nature among us. Whether you are in a luxury tent complete with extravagant bedding, a modern tree-house or retro cool cabin, getting one with nature doesn’t mean you have to suffer, and neither does your fashion. Nordstrom’s latest shop within a shop, Pop-In@Nordstrom Gets Out, can help you with all of your outdoorsy needs, whether those include a super cozy floral sleeping bag or a hanging tree house tent. As far as what to wear during your back to nature excursion, I’ve got your covered. And this look would be just as great at a casual gathering in Seattle as it would be glamping in the country. I love these L’Agence paper bag denim shorts because they are both stylish and practical for being active. Gingham has made a sweet appearance again this summer and I love this J. Crew Tie-front boy shirt with the shorts. Bring your adidas Melange Pullover hoodie in your uber stylish, yet practical colorblock Mokuyobi Backpack while you are exploring the beautiful outdoors. And speaking of exploring, it is best to have some good shoes, but that doesn’t mean they need to be unattractive. The lightweight and versatile Suicoke Chin2 Sandal will let you hit the trails with comfort and style. Bring the iconic Nars Sculpting Multiple Duo for all in one easy, natural makeup for lips, cheeks and eyes. Every day diamond (0r faux diamond) studs are easy understated glamour.
Whether you are planning for hot city nights or cool, laid back adventures in the country, enjoy August in all of its summer glory.