15 Outfits for July 2018

For me, July was a month of travel and special events, both of which called for unique considerations outfit-wise. While I admittedly have two cocktail dresses which I keep specially for formal occasions (i.e. the wedding I attended this month), there were several casual events to take into account while planning this month's sampler wardrobe; among them a rehearsal dinner, two fancy brunches, an Independence Day soiree, and my high school reunion, for which I shamelessly wanted to look my best. I also had to ensure I pulled enough travel wear to get me through two long plane rides and both east and west coast summer climates. Between all that casual-wear planning, I decided it would be best to leave my work wardrobe as-is, so you may notice those pieces are exactly the same as July's -- just styled differently in the photos below!

For all these constraints, I'm proud with how this sampler turned out. With just 24 articles of clothing, I kept things fresh by mixing in accessories and rotating separates. A distinct color palette emerged almost by accident, and I correctly anticipated what little interest I'd have in sleeves this month. Incredibly, I'm not yet bored by my rollover work wardrobe, and while I am still seeking a lighter-toned trouser or skirt, you may see most of these pieces remixed a third time for August!

To my delight, I had a chance to put my wardrobe organization studies into practice when I visited my parents. My mom, who shares my fondness for a variety of clothing styles, felt overdue for a closet purge, and I set to work making room for more space, order, and "her-ness" within her current collection. We spent five fun-filled hours together, pairing like with like and creating a series of new looks she felt excited about. It was a joy to see my mother exercising her panache for creative problem-solving with pieces she'd been uncertain about before; I've always admired her willingness to embrace change. If I can figure out her secret to doing this, I'll consider myself twice blessed!

It's always hard after vacation to rev up the engines again; to put in motion all those hopes you dreamed up while away from reality. The reunion provided a good chance to check in on what I've been doing (and not doing) in the ten years since I left home. Presently, I'm doing my best not to get swept up again in the current that is New York City; to keep my head above water and my feet kicking forward, my breath level and my eyes on the silhouette possibilities that I chased here, rather than the distractions which lie around every corner, however delightful they are. It feels quite grown-up to think in that way, and I believe I'm finally ready to let myself grow up a little bit more.

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