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Wardrobe Staple – White Linen

White linen. Is there anywhere that it looks out of place? You need a few white linen pieces in your wardrobe. I could have my entire capsule wardrobe with just white linen, and add in some colorful accessories. It’s soft, comfortable, and is effortlessly elegant. It always looks classy. You can wear it in Palm Beach, Italy, Sydney, India or Bermuda and everywhere in between. It never goes out of style and you’ll never look back at holiday snaps and ask yourself “what was I wearing?” I’ve got shorts, pants, shirts and dresses that I take everywhere. They match everything, and they’re great for hot places because they breathe, and you can hand wash and they’ll dry quickly in a breeze. This cute @islandcompany dress kept me cool and effortlessly chic for both sightseeing and going out to dinner in Bermuda. Well, it’s actually a tunic, but on petites like me, it’s a full dress. 👍🏽 . . #shrimpwears #islandcompany #whitelinen #resortwear #islandstyle #travelwardrobe #capsulewardrobe

A post shared by Sarah Monahan 🦐 (@shrimptank) on

Yep, white linen is one of my favourite things. When I eventually create my own line, the first collection will be an all linen capsule, with all the essential pieces; shorts, pants, shirt, skirt, shift and blazer. You can then mix and match a few other pieces, and have the perfect summer wardrobe.

Some people are afraid of linen, because it wrinkles so easily, but honestly, that’s part of my love for it. I love that crushed look, just like I love eating messy tacos that leave stuff everywhere.

It’s classic, timeless, and always looks classy. When you see a man or woman in linen, you imagine they must travel to exotic locations, and probably spend time on a yacht. There’s just something old money about it.

I find my white linen shorts are probably one of my most worn items. They go with everything, they wash easily, and they just work. They’re also super comfy. Here’s a selection of pictures to show how versatile they are. Go classic nautical in white and navy, go all white, or add a splash of color. The really are the workhorse of my wardrobe.

Not into shorts? How about white linen pants. These are everywhere at the beginning on spring, and whether you prefer a baggy pair or something more structured, they are the quintessential linen item. If you only own one linen piece, this is probably it.

Tommy Bahama white linen pants and one piece swimsuit

I think a white linen shirt is also a must have. Above I let my bottom half be my neutral, but if you want to be a bit more festive on the bottom, or just want to look super crisp, a linen button down shirt is always a winner.

Linen dresses are comfy, flowy and effortlessly elegant. They go from pool side pina coladas to martinis at the yacht club. Whether you prefer a caftan, a button down dress, or just something breezy, you’ll always look fabulous.

Sometimes wearing white on white linen can make you look like you’re in a cult, so don’t go too bohemian with it, or talk to yourself….

One last pic, because I really do love the white and navy look. I guess it goes with me living on a boat.

Lilly Pulitzer Tunic and navy Lilly shorts

So now that the weather is getting warmer, have a look at linen.

Besides being beautiful, here a few fun internet facts for you.

 

“In hot weather those dressed in linen clothes are found to show the skin temperature 3°-4°C below that of their silk or cotton-wearing friends”. According to some studies, a person wearing linen clothes perspires 1.5 times less than when dressed in cotton clothes and twice less than when dressed in viscose clothes.”

Linen is a “stiff” fabric and is less likely to cling to the skin; when it billows away, it quickly dries out and becomes cool again. Summer clothes made of linen possess high air permeability, which allows air to flow through the fabric easily and allows the body to breathe.

Woven from the stems of flax, a vegetable fiber. Has twice the strength of cotton. Absorbs and releases perspiration quickly, thus allowing the fabric to “breathe”. Linen is one of the most breathable fabrics, making it especially cool and comfortable to wear in the heat.

Looking for some of your own pieces?
Try these: Amazon is so easy because you can order in your PJ’s late at night, they deliver to your door, and if they don’t fit, you can send them back. No weird fitting room lights!

 

 

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Another beautiful day in South Florida

Staying cool in a caftan.

One of the perks of living in South Florida is the beautiful weather all year long. In winter, it’s fairly warm in the day and cools off at night. In Spring and Autumn, it’s gloriously perfect. Summer the sun shines, and we get the daily thunderstorm roll through to add to the humidity. It can get a little too hot during the heat of the day, but that’s where the local dress code is a win.

Unlike some places where they wear their jeans all year long, down in places like Palm Beach, everyone slips into something a little more comfortable. Shift dresses and caftans are everywhere. Bright colors, and crisp white are de rigeur. Palm Beach was the home of Lilly Pulitzer, and her spirit hasn’t left the island. Wearing bright colors makes you feel happy. There’s no being a wallflower in a kaleidoscope print.

Palm Beach has more preppy pastels with splashes of bright pinks, but as you head south towards Miami, the colors, like the people, get a little louder.merv

When I was there last week, it was like Miami had issued a uniform. Almost every single lady was moving between the beaches and bars in soft flowing caftans of every length, color and pattern imaginable. It was magical. All these women, flowing around in soft fabrics. Some had plain, short, sheer cover ups to show off their sexy bikinis underneath, others had long silky caftans that looked more like etherical evening gowns. Everyone looked so comfortable, even in the stifling heat. The caftans dry quickly, even when put over a wet bikini. The few people walking around in cut off jeans had wet patches that looked super uncomfortable. The best part about a pretty caftan is I can walk straight from the beach, over to the bars, and get myself a pina colada, and I don’t have to go back to my hotel and change first. You can also tie your caftan back or go one shouldered and make it look like a sexy dress for clubbing after the sun goes down. Everyone had completely different patterns and lengths, so no two women looked alike. It was a beautiful thing to observe.

South Florida is full of resorts. No resort wear wardrobe is complete without the staple caftan.

So  if you’re headed to South Florida, do yourself a favour and grab yourself a caftan or two. It’ll be the most versatile piece in your luggage.

If you’re like me and have trouble finding a caftan to fit your petite frame, I’ve curated a collection of both long and short caftans that will all fit a petite. Check out my Petite Caftan Fit Guide to see how long each length caftan is on an actual petite person, and then find something in your style at the Shop.