I love finding alternate uses for pieces, as well as little DIY hacks for tweaking them! Long “duster” cardigans are very popular this year, designed to be worn flowingly over shorts or a dress. If you find that look a little too trendy for regular wear, I’ve also been loving them as elegant swim cover-ups! Mine here (comes in navy or grey) has a lightweight crinkled texture, and hits near my ankles at the longest point. It ties at the front center by my natural waist, but I also thought it’d be cute worn crossover wrap style. I used the button hole feature on my sewing machine to add two tiny holes on one side seam … et voila! See the bottom of this post for more photos…
It was an exciting day for J.Crew lovers last year, when Nordstrom started carrying the brand in both regular and petite sizing. I can’t complain about an additional way to shop J.Crew and with Nordstrom’s customer service policies (everyday free shipping & returns, and they match the promos). I love a good navy gingham for summer and tried on a number of different styles in this collection of bathing suit separates. If you’re looking for swim bottoms with more coverage, these boyshorts have a good amount in both the front and back. Maybe I’m getting old and fuddy-duddy, but I also tried on the string bikini bottoms (my “go-to” during college days), which felt like a minuscule loin patch on me!
For those with smaller busts, the cross-back French bikini top I’m wearing is listed on J.Crew’s site to best suit A-B cups (with a suggestion to size up for more coverage). It’s good quality with a lining, removable light padding cups, boning on the sides, and adjustable back ties. Their seersucker French swimsuit is cut almost exactly the same except with ties at the shoulder, and the coordinating seersucker bikini bottoms have a decent amount of coverage.
For ladies with bigger busts or who want more coverage, I also tried on this adorable off-shoulder bikini top with a built-in banded shelf bra. You can wear the elasticized short sleeves either off or on the shoulder, for a different and equally cute look. I really liked this one, but it had some excess material on me at the front bust area which I think would look better if “filled out” more on someone curvier. It doesn’t have padding, but with the shelf bra lining and crinkled gingham material, I don’t think one would have to worry about anything showing through.
Jack Rogers is a favorite here in New England – I don’t own any of their leather sandals, but these jelly flats caught my eye in a search for shoes that could get wet and sandy. The fit info says to size down if you’re in-between sizes, but I had to size up because my heels were hanging off the back of the sz 5s (fit will also depend on your toe length). I thought these were a stylish alternative to standard rubber flip flops, and could easily be dressed up or down. These photos were taken during our stay at the Four Seasons, where it was easy to go from pool to beach to restaurants in this look. For another jelly shoe option, these harmonic bow flops are a statement sandal with an oversized, eye-catching bow (half sizes should definitely size up on these as well).
Above is how my duster cardigan is intended to be tied at the center waist. With two holes added (see arrows below), you can then pull the strings through, wrap-style, and tie them in the back as a slight variation!
I’ve shown this floppy hat several times last year, but it’s still my go-to for trips since it has a knack for rebounding back to shape even after being packed in a checked suitcase. I stuff the center with soft clothing and let the brim lie as flat as possible on surrounding items in my suitcase. Compared to my other hats, it’s a little lighter in weight and more pliable, so is comfy for wearing even when sitting on a beach chair and resting your head back.
Thank you to Nordstrom for partnering on this post.