Funny Face (1957): A Paris Collage

Jo Stockton (played by Audrey Hepburn) works at a bookshop in Greenwich Village. She loves philosophical conversations and dreams of going to Paris. When Maggie Prescott (Kay Thompson), editor-in-chief of Quailty Magazine, decides to stage a photoshoot at Jo’s place of employement, the shop assistant gets the opportunity of a lifetime. Enter: the dancing photographer Dick Avery (Fred Astaire). Suddenly the universe aligns to bring Jo to her favorite city where Champagne laced with Existentialism overflows.

Works Sighted

Jaxon Hats straw skimmer hat // Yves Saint Laurent trench coat // Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label Brut

Diptyque Eau Duelle eau de toilette // J.Crew ruffle-collar shirt

Oscar de la Renta black dress // Saint James Breton // Bass weejuns // L’Oréal mascara // peonies from Arôm

Valentino heels // J.Crew Martie pant in bi-stretch cotton // Yves Saint Laurent concealer pen // Dior lip sugar scrub // Dior lip glow // Alexander McQueen dress // L’existentialisme est un humanisme // Christian Louboutin flats

Window Shopping at Smythson

When I lived in London, I’d visit Smythson quite often without the intention of buying anything. You’d find me at the Sloane Square location…right near my beloved Peter Jones and The Botanist. Shopping online doesn’t compare to an in-person experience at one of the brand’s London stores, but browsing the website is the best way to keep up with the latest developments in merchandise whilst living stateside. We’re in the middle of what the French call la rentrée, and many of the items I’ve selected for this post were inspired by my return to my desk.

Works Sighted

A5 writing folder // correspondence cards // desk mat

writing paper // jewellery box // envelopes

photo album // photo corners // travel notebook

Summersalt Swimsuits

My extensive search for a one-piece swimsuit came to an end this summer. I’d discovered the brand Summersalt online, but the constant flood of promotional mailings ultimately convinced me to place my first order. The women-owned business celebrates the variety of the female form by diversifying the personalities in its campaign. I recognized the faces of some of their ambassadors including Jessica Nabongo, Chelsea Werner, and Carly Cushnie. I decided to put the company’s motto, Every body is a Summersalt body, to the test.

I ended up returning my first order, which included the tie belted cove and the ruffle backflip. The tie belted cove didn’t suit me, but I ordered the ruffle backflip in sea urchin again, this time in the perfect size. A week or two later, I rounded out my collection with the sidestroke in deep sea.

In the past, I’d wasted time trying on one-pieces that didn’t offer any support. In contrast, when I wear my Summersalt suits, it feels like I’m being gently hugged. Everything stays in place, and readjusting my suit is a thing of the past. When I return to the city, the sidestroke will surely be accompanying me to the indoor pool. The ruffle backflip is a little too low-cut for laps but stunning nonetheless. If you’re in need of a confidence-boosting one-piece, I highly recommend you begin your search with Summersalt.

Works Sighted

Summersalt sidestroke

Packing for the Beach House

While it may be tempting to overpack for your stay at the beach house, I caution against it. Your much-deserved time in and by the ocean shouldn’t be eclipsed by an excessive amount of belongings. I take my most casual items of clothing to the beach. No iron, no steamer…just five of the same tank dress. In addition to practical clothing, family-friendly games, classic movies, and wine all make for a celebratory time.

Works Sighted

Estelle Colored Glass Champagne coupes // Chateau du Petit Thouars Cremant de Loire Non Vintage // The Hygge Game // sunscreen // chapstick

Warby Parker sunglasses // Summersalt sidestroke // Charlie Holiday sarong // Sunbody Hats straw hat // Hermès Oran sandal // L.L.Bean Boat and Tote

J.Crew short-sleeve pajama short set (hydrangea) // S’well water bottle // Holiday // My Paris Dream // tank dress

Hostess Gifts

I’ve been spending time with friends and family in an effort to savor the last days of summer. The season has certainly been a step up from last year when my primary source of joy was flâner-ing with a straw tote. Zoom meetings don’t compare to seeing someone face-to-face, and in my world, dinner and the hostess gift have made a comeback.

I never show up to someone’s house empty-handed unless the token of my appreciation is arriving via mail. My creativity is usually put to good use in the selection process, but when I’m pressed for time, I opt for the respectable homemade baked good or flowers in a vase with water. Sending a handwritten thank-you note shortly after the event has passed is an elegant gesture.

Works Sighted

Uncommon Goods swivel cheese board // Mark & Graham small bamboo lacquer tray // Creekside Farms dried French herbs wreath

Pineapple Collaborative olive oil // Verve Culture Moroccan glassware // Hu Kitchen chocolate gift box

CapaBunga cheese vault // Anthropologie serving set // Art et Manufacture pie plates

The Alex Mill Edit

I can’t remember when I discovered Alex Mill, but I recall that it was love at first sight. The company’s motto, uniforms for individuals, and slogan, wake up, get dressed, don’t overthink it, embody the principles of this blog. The brand, launched officially in 2012, came into its own when Alex Drexler found a formidable business partner in Somsack Sikhounmuong. Alex, son of Mickey Drexler (former CEO and Chairman of J.Crew Group), was introduced to Somsack by his father a few years after the company’s inception. The co-founders (with Somsack heading the design team) make, in their words, the right clothes. I’m drawn to their timeless staples. My Alex Mill item of the moment: the khaki Kelsey skirt in linen.

Works Sighted

J.Crew slim perfect shirt in Baird McNutt Irish linen // Alex Mill Kelsey skirt in linen // Cole Haan Avani city sandal (old)

Alex Mill pull-on skirt in paper cotton // Alex Mill Paulie tunic dress // Alex Mill Kelsey skirt in linen // Alex Mill pull-on skirt in paper cotton

Further Reading

Somsack Sikhounmuong on designing for Alex Mill and life after J. Crew (Glossy)

Somsack Sikhounmuong Is Back—and He’s Launching Affordable Women’s Wear at Alex Mill (Glamour)