The Perfect Sturdy Summer Outfit When You Crave A Little Bit Of Girly


Sturdy Gals, despite our upper body strength, our steadiness, our appreciation of comfortable shoes, crave a little girliness every now and then. Oh, not girly to the point of ruffles, or lace, or sequins on our tee-shirts. Girly in the way of bare legs, wider skirts, and simple plainspun surfaces. Girls, were there a prairie or Blackbird Pond nearby.

For example, these shirtdresses from Garnet Hill, here, for $98. Navy with a magenta sash. What a brilliant idea.

Or this Tampico bag from France. $216. Because French girls are always throwing bags over their shoulders. You know, insouciantly. And then riding off on their bikes to pick coquelicots. Found via Cup of Jo.

And finally, for the whimsy a Sturdy Gal appreciates, design-your-own-Havaianas. ~$30. Choose the footbed color, the straps, add a couple of little shiny thingamabobs.  A gold star is appropriate, when girls get everything right. Which they do more often than they know.

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31 Comments

  • I don’t “do” flip-flops – I just can’t wear the darn things – but I loooove the navy shirtdress with the magenta sash. I love the bag, too (I’m a shoulder-slinger from way back) but for $216 I’ll have to settle for just looking at it. :^)

  • It’s amazing how you have the Sturdy Gal profile nailed!

  • Summer might be the best season for combining Girly with Sturdy Gal, no? I could not wear dresses with such a high-contrast waist/belt, but . . . sooooo cute!

  • Love, love, love both Garnet Hill dresses, I have been a fan forever, they still do a nice job. Tampico is a new one, I shall be off to investigate! Here’s the heretical quote of the day: I almost never do flip-flops, even our upscale version. Despite the fact we sell tons, and they do look lovely in most cases, I just cannot wear them unless on the beach, headed to the beach, or leaving the beach. (Or a pool.)

    Have a lovely Tuesday!
    tp

  • Love the Garnet Hill dresses! I have a navy dress that is good for 3 of the 4 seasons with an accessory change here and there. Those are my favorite pieces! xoxo

  • I am with Jan. I dont do flip flops either but I love those dresses!

  • I’ve been eyeing up those Garnet Hill dresses. So adorable!

  • hi lisa,

    i’m starting to get it, i think. is a sturdy girl a tomboy?

    xo

  • You found nice dresses, great for warm weather too. And the canvas bag fits in. How about espadrilles ? They would complete the look perfectly!

  • I swear, as soon as I saw those dresses in my Garnet Hill last week, I thought of you. Love that bag.

  • Those sashes! Love them.

    By the way, Martin thoroughly enjoyed your post on dressing for academia and agreed with all of your points.

  • Those are great dresses for gals who have been using the shake weight thingy!

    I love a tote with style like this one…
    I saw a Hilary Radley one in navy and came very close to buying it but remembered that I have a similar one in black!

    Those flip flops remind me of the rubber ones we wore as kids in the 60’s!
    They were sold in the “dime stores” and we bought several pairs as they wore out quite fast!

  • Give yourself a gold star for getting everything about this outfit right!

  • Love the dress, long for the bag. Flip flops, though, are bad for the foot, at least by many podiatrist’s lights.

  • This girly girl approves. Moreover, this California girl pines for a pair of personalized flip-flops – good find!

  • I love these casual dresses with the big, bold sashes. I even went to the website, but they only deliver to the US and Japan.
    Plus, I’ve become wary of online clothing purchases after I got a Net-a-porter suit that never quite fit right.
    I do have shirt dresses, but more formal ones. One has a belt, but a small thin one that matches the navy fabric.
    I wonder if I can get a HK seamstress to make something similar to what you’ve posted.

    PS. This is way more up my alley than the academia outfits. Why are academics often so dowdy?

  • I have been looking at that stripey dress hungrily since I got the Garnet Hill catalogue. So lovely.

  • My word for the day is now “insouciant”! I will attempt to cultivate an air of it at every opportunity! Oh, for a magenta sash!

  • I love the dresses. I just wish they were longer. They are just too short for me at 5’8″. I need a bit more length to have the right proportion.

  • Oh, I love the striped version of the Garnet Hill dress–with the salmon sash.

  • So glad I saw this by way of lovely Susan Tiner…I could really use this look. : )

  • I was eyeing those dresses last week, trying to decide (a) if I could rationalize one and (b) if so, which one I would pick.

    Second comment: I just loved the Witch of Blackbird Pond and read it a million times as a girl. Definitely a sturdy girl. Glad to know it resonates enough to merit not only a blog mention but also a link. Now, I am off to go read what Wikipedia says about it.

  • Love the Tampico bag but cannot find it online except from France or the UK. Do you know of anywhere in the States that it’s sold?

  • love the dresses, love the sashes and bag. I can’t get myself out the door in flip flops though I like the looks on others.

  • Dresses are to die for. Only I have to cover up the arms with a little sweater….love the bag, too!

  • Legallyblondmel – Aha! Another Californian with flip flop dreams! BTW, some of those Tampicos would make amazing diaper bags.

    Joyce – More fools they, ignoring the Asian market. And I bet your seamstress could make this quite easily.

    Hannah – :). I do like your taste, always have.

    Laura – The magenta sash is most likely a hallmark of the insouciant, no? :)

    Susan – Hmm. My daughter is tall too. I should think about height and its impact. Thanks.

    Terri – I know, it’s kind of like mattress ticking, which I have always loved.

  • Jan – Some day send me your price points for stuff and I will do a post just for you:). Seriously. I feel I take the easy way out a lot, going for the more expensive. Can’t help it, training.

    Valentine – 54 years living with it, right?:)

    Mater – Agreed. Summer, or a nice winter ski lodge.

    TPP – Glad you like Tampico, I am looking for places to source them in the US. I’m so surprised at all the flip flop nay-sayers. Who knew?

    Preppy 101 – And isn’t navy just the best?

    Ms. Givens – What “gives” with the flip flops? Glad you like the dresses.

  • Sal – These are so up your alley. Just like the Land’s End ones you wear.

    Janet – A tomboy, but with less intent. At some point the Sturdy Gal has to make a choice, embrace, or head in the sand.

    metscan – Espadrilles would make the whole outfit perfectly French!

    Stephanie – So funny how we start to understand eachother online. I appreciate my presence in your thoughts.

    Susan – Oh great! Please thank Martin for his time!

    Hostess – Absolutely shaking that weight:). And these rubber flips are of some new kind of rubber. Soft, comfortable, durable.

  • Patsy – :).

    Duchesse – My jaw is dropped. Flip flops are a way of life in much of California.

    Mona – Welcome! And so happy to show you something you like.

    Elizabeth – I am so pleased to find that other women remember that book. It was one of the few I ever read repeatedly. Cast a magical spell on my imagination.

    Jo-De – I looked online. It appears that there’s a boutique in Southern California that has carried them in the past, Jenni Kayne. http://store.jennikayne.com/. But I tried to contact them on Twitter, so far to no avail.

    Mardel – Et tu, Brute? :). I had no idea that flip flops would become the least liked thing I’ve ever posted. I am learning every day. Thanks.

    Loretta – A nice, light, lacy little cotton sweater….

  • Oh ear, I don’t mean to disparage the flip flops. I just manage to trip myself on them. Don’t ask me how I do it, if I knew that I could stop. They look adorable on all the young women in Rhinebeck this summer. I seem to be trapped between the flip flop generation and the orthopedic sandal generation, lost somewhere in the middle.

  • Well, I like flip flops and wear them (at least around the house) most days. I must own at least ten pairs, in different colours and different heights.