Nautical by Nature

Apologies for the cheesy heading, but I am seriously bananas over the nautical trend this season.  I’ve always had something of an affinity for the sailor look (I have been a huge fan of Ralph Lauren since I was about 8 years old) and my fiance literally lives in his boat shoes and polos–but the options this season leave me positively gleeful.

A number of different fashion houses and purveyors have taken the look on board.  Some have gone too far (has anyone seen the “rope” necklace Anthropologie currently has in stores?  It is hid-e-ous.  They lost me at rhinestones…), but others have really hit the mark.  I am gaga over Chloe’s high-end sweaters and dresses, including this luxe cashmere dream:

Velvet by Graham and Spencer, A.L.C., and Torn by Ronny Kobo have turned out delightful little cotton numbers (both dresses and tops), including this staple by A.L.C.:

At $124, it’s a steep buy for a cotton shirt, but J. Crew came out with a more modestly priced version for those who want the look of the season without the hefty price tag.  Imagine pairing it with simple J. Brand white jeans (J. Brand and Paige are my go-to denim brands — substantial, snug, and I like that they don’t have a flashy back pocket):

I’d round out the outfits with accessories like the classic Jack Roger sandal in gold (made popular by Jackie O; I typically buy a pair at the beginning of the summer season and absolutely wear them into the ground.  I like the metallics because they go with anything, but white looks refreshing for this upcoming season) or a pair of Chloe aviators:

Or maybe top them off with a classic navy blazer (this double-breasted version by Theory rings in at a cool $400 or so, but J. Crew has a decent–and decently priced–counterpart.  Or, if you’re petite like myself, you can snag one from the boys’ department at Brooks Brothers and have it tailored to your specifications!) and a handful of gold necklaces:

The first is by Giles and Brother (around $280 I believe), but you can find a million just like it for less.  I found a similar version from a Sassanova, a well-curated shoe-and-accessory boutique around the corner from my apartment in Georgetown (unfortunately convenient…) for a fraction of the price.  The necklace in the middle is, obviously, by Chanel — simply because you just can’t go wrong with a classic.  It will set you back $900 or so.  The large white link version at the bottom is super-fun and more acceptably priced (Amanda Pearl, $148).

A few other items I just had to include in the posting — you can’t go wrong with a classic white jean jacket (the first by Current Elliott, the second by good ol’ J. Crew):

And I’m absolutely dreaming about little nautical numbers like this one by Markus Lupfer:

…and this one, by my favorite dress designer of all time — Milly:

I have a somewhat similar Milly maxi dress from two seasons ago — it’s navy and white with a variation of the chain link design above, a halter top, but it has a cute rope detailing as the tie in the back.  So adorable.  I wear it with flat gold thongs like these, by K. Jacques:

…only my thongs are from Gap KIDS if you can believe it.  I have tiny feet (size 5…I’m also only just over 5 feet tall!), and I managed to buy the largest girls’ size they carried–and they just worked.  (They also cost a whopping $16 and have lasted 3 seasons.  Who would have thought?)

I could go on forever, but maybe I’ll just post a follow up with some additional finds.  In the meantime, I’ll leave you with the ultimate stripe-sporting icon, Audrey Hepburn:

If that’s not enough to lead you to “test the waters” with the nautical trend, I don’t know what is!  Seeing her picture reminds me of the perfect companion to any of these looks — the RayBan wayfarers.  I bought a pair last summer, wore them with everything (partially inspired by one of my fashion gurus, Rachel Bilson, who seems to live in them), and then bought a pair for my fiance, who is rarely spotted without them.  They suit a number of different fashion identities, from the hipster to the classic to the preppy.


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