Would it surprise any of you to learn that the one item I am most frequently implored upon by readers to locate is a perfect, simple, inexpensive white tee? And that I have not been holding out on you just for kicks? Locating this particular item is a challenge for a number of reasons, not least of which is that we all have varying ideas on what exactly the perfect white tee is. For me, it’s linen, because linen slouches instead of clinging, which I think works best with white, and my favorite of the moment is this one from Everlane. It’s got an all-around loose (but not boxy) comfortable fit, and I love, love, love the sweet scoopneck. Fair warning: it is—as all linen tees are—the tiniest bit sheer. Nothing a flesh-colored bra can’t solve.
Also nice: the Vintage cotton tee from J. Crew—sized up. That part is crucial, because you want the V to drape sexy and low.
And finally: I’ve got a deeply stylish friend who could afford to buy whatever she wants, and swears by this $9 option from Mango.
When my close pal Andrea Linett came to lunch not long ago carrying an advance copy of her new book, The Cool Factor, I immediately turned into the rudest lunch date ever, unable to take my eyes off its pages, and return my focus to conversation like a polite person should. This book is like that—you just fall in, obsess over all the juicy bits, and devour. About three dozen surpassingly stylish women—almost all of whom are over 40, which is cool—are profiled (and photographed beautifully by Andrea’s husband Michael Waring) and they provide the kind of real-life inspiration that I, for one, am always craving. There are also tons of helpful wardrobe hints, all imparted in Andrea’s fun, funny, highly relatable voice. The message here is that great style is something we all can have, and that it’s something to have fun with, and if there is any justice in this world, it will become a classic.
This outfit recipe is so straightforward you guys don’t really need me to walk you through it, but the blazer/jeans/tee/sneakers combo is such a favorite of mine I couldn’t quite resist laying it all out anyway. The most important component, of course, is the blazer, and I love the skinny shawl lapel on this particular one. (Of course, this one is pretty good too, and rings in at a friendlier price.)
A striped tee under the jacket is so tomboy cool.
I am in love with the wash on this pair from R13 because I like a black jean to look a bit broken-in, but the pair I’m showing you instead are just about as good and a lot cheaper.
A classic shoe for a classic outfit.
Blue sunglasses are a nice way to throw some color into the mix while still playing it pretty safe.