Remember those layouts/articles in women’s magazines like “Go From Day to Night in this Outfit” and “Pack a Bag for the Weekend With These Three Easy Pieces”? Oh, that last one! As a young teenager, I would look at these mini wardrobes that were so chic and simple and imagine my life as a young career woman going to San Francisco for the weekend, living a life of adventure with a French scarf tied around my neck and the top down of my vintage little convertible.
Here is the short story of how a series of events gave birth to something like the “Pack a Bag for the Weekend With These Three Easy Pieces”. We didn’t actually go away for the weekend, but because we were having the vacation attitude, someone actually said to us, “Enjoy your trip!” as we left their shop. Comments like that means you’ve won the game of vacation living. At the end of this Clothes Story I list some tips on how to exude the vacation living attitude.
Outfit #1: My “Weekend With These Three Easy Pieces” started with this white cotton floaty dress from Velvet my friend, Jodi gave me from her closet clean out. I LOVE clothing from closet clean outs. It was maybe my second time wearing it. It’s so soft and feels like I’m wearing a cloud, but I kind of knew it wasn’t the right shape for me. So, I subconsciously put it on this day because I knew my friend, Leah was coming over for dinner later and that it would look so good on her. By the end of the evening I told her it would soon be hers, and she said, “Yeah, I’ve been eyeing it all evening thinking I never see a dress like that. It’s perfect!”
Outfit #2: But before Leah even came over, Evan and I went for a walk to buy what we needed to make dinner. On the way, we planned to stop at Surfing Cowboys because E had eyed a birthday present for me there the day before. “I want to get you a Hawaiian shirt for your birthday!” he said, “What do you think?” It was one of those times where I think I am hearing a crazy idea from him, and then in an instant, like a lightening bolt, the true brilliance of the idea hits me like a beautiful symphony piercing through the static of my closed mind. Walking into Surfing Cowboy, my eyes are illuminated by the sight of a whole rack of the best and softest Hawaiian shirts that came from someone’s collection that was amassed over decades. I remember seeing Surfing Cowboys when it used to be on Abbott Kinney, and while I never properly checked it out, I would peek my head in from time to time and see that it had a great individual vintage, beachy but intellectual vibe – like a fantasy Venice beach house from the Beat 1950’s that had an impossibly good sound system and a great library. Now it’s on a newly cool and breezy stretch of Mar Vista’s Venice Boulevard with more space and natural lighting. So, just like when I was a kid and had a new clothing item, I had that shirt on and tied at the waist by the time we crossed the street towards the Japanese market. Layer it, Baby! Outfit #3!: Next morning we were shuttling our youngest to his internship in the arts district in DTLA (downtown Los Angeles), and there was no way I was going to not wear that Hawaiian shirt again (did I mention how SOFT it is? They have more of these. Go get one!) – this time with jeans. This is not rocket science, people! Shirt. Jeans. Flipflops. Come on. Okay, now that the three outfits with three easy pieces are all squared away, let us enjoy what wonderful things are happening to the once sketchy, grimy neighborhood of the arts district. It’s getting Googled, Baby! I know; I should just call this post, “Baby!”
Vacation Living How To:
- Dress in an outfit that exudes relaxation and/or adventure. Sun hats help.
- Don’t walk; float.
- Try bossa novas as the soundtrack of your day.
- Make a grand ceremony of meals – even if it is just a little snack at home.
- Marvel at things. Trying saying “Oooh!” a lot with your eyes wide. Pretending becomes reality.
- And lastly, if you are going to move your big tech company into a neighborhood, be cool and subsidize some of the housing so that some of the really cool people can stay there. Wait, a second. How did that get in here? Vacation Living How To… maybe??
Dress by Velvet. Similar here. Similar shirts available at Surfing Cowboys. Hat by San Diego Hat Company. Sneakers from Footland. Jeans by Joe’s. Necklace by Evan Hartzell. Coffee, croissant, and flowers by Black Top Coffee. All photographs by Evan Hartzell.