Ask Avery: Spring must-haves
blog by Avery Hartmans • March 08, 2013 @ 9:52am
I’m sick and tired of wearing winter clothes, plus I just got my tax return so you know I’m headed to the mall. What should I look for?
I like to think of the tax return as a present to yourself for working so hard all the time. Sure, it may just be your own money you’re getting back, but that’s not the point. The point is you should spend it on yourself, and you should spend it on clothes.
And what better time of year to hit the mall? Stores are chock-full of all the new spring arrivals and all those beautiful clothes are practically begging you to take them off the rack. Maybe you don’t need another dress, or a new pair of wedges, or this spring’s It Bag, but who’s going to stop you? A present, especially to yourself, should never be something you need. It should be something that just so happens to look fantastic on you.
So whether the size of your tax return will only allow you to splurge on one thing, or whether you’re currently making it rain on yourself, this spring offers plenty of must-haves that you have totally earned. Let’s go shopping.
There are few colors as functional and versatile as army green and everyone needs a jacket for Buffalo’s unpredictable spring. So why not opt for the perfect army green trench to wear over all your new, adorable clothes? It’s light enough to toss on over a pastel sundress for more pleasant weather, but when it’s threatening to downpour at any moment, pair it with jeans and a sweater. Give it a few weeks and you’ll be wondering how you ever got along without one.
Jacket: Urban Outfitters, $180
I’ve been seeing polka-dotted jeans everywhere lately and I’m immediately jealous of any cool girl who can pull them off. Dots may not be for everyone — they’re definitely a little girly — but something about spring fashion always makes me want to look extra ladylike. Plus, if you tone down the cuteness factor with the rest of your outfit, you won’t feel like such a prepstar. Or maybe you’re into that, in which case let the Peter Pan collars and pastels abound.
Jeans: Gap, $54.99
No matter how fancy you are, there are days when you just need to wear a sweatshirt. But that doesn’t mean you should throw on your rattiest hoodie from high school. Class it up a little with a cute, functional sweatshirt that still has a little style — stripes, lace or any other unexpected pattern or fabric will keep you from feeling like a total bum. And you don’t have to totally dress-down, either. Try a more casual top like this with sophisticated bottoms or mix and match patterns — you could even pair it with your new polka-dotted jeans. I think of these things so you don’t have to.
Sweatshirt: ASOS, $42.39
There’s just something about buying a new bag that can really turn your mood around. Especially when it so happens to be super-cute, vintage-inspired and best of all: mint. You may be thinking that mint won’t go with everything in your closet, but that’s just because you’re not trying hard enough. You can basically match anything with anything else and call it fashion so make it work, because a cute purse is totally worth it.
Bag: Banana Republic, $220
I love eyelet. Sure, it’s about the girliest fabric you can put on your body but I don’t even care. Much like the groundhog, it doesn’t feel like spring to me until I’ve spotted eyelet. It’s fresh, youthful and implies class and innocence — don’t worry, if you have neither, you can still wear it.
Top: J.Crew, $118
I get it: short shorts aren’t for everyone. It’s a whole lot of leg and very little fabric available to disguise any winter weight. But for anyone with skinny little chicken legs, or anyone who simply doesn’t care if people see their cellulite, high-waisted silky shorts are a must. A brightly colored pair are a lot more wearable and comfortable than you may think and can easily be dressed up or dressed down. I am warning you now, however: if you sit down in such loose, short shorts, people will probably see a lot more than they bargained for.
Shorts: Forever 21, $12.80
You may be thinking you’re totally over the whole chambray trend, or you’re bored by denim on denim. Well listen up, my friends: first of all, you’re simply wrong, and second of all, two-tone denim is now a thing. I first saw it on a pair of skinny jeans, but the fact that a two-tone chambray shirt exists makes me even happier. What better way to spice up a few-seasons-old trend than making it double the fun? Yes, I will gladly wear denim on denim on denim, thank you. And the greatest thing about this trend is it’s just as multitalented as its predecessor, which I shall christen Chambray I. Wear Chambray II with, obviously, even more denim, or pair it will white jeans, colored skinnies, open over a sundress, tucked into a high-waisted skirt, etc. The sky’s the limit.
Shirt: Zara, $79.90
It wouldn’t be a shopping spree without a new pair of shoes and there’s no better choice than a pair of wear-with-everything wedges. The combination of an off-white upper and wooden sole makes these shoes super spring-ish and neutral, so you can wear them with just about anything in your closet. But they also have fun details like perforated leather and a peep-toe, so you’ll be walking in springtime wherever you go.
Shoes: Steve Madden, $99.95
It’s my personal philosophy that when you find the perfect dress, you should buy it immediately, regardless of whether you have somewhere to wear it. Memories of awesome dresses past still haunt me whenever I go shopping in times of crisis, since of course at the precise moment I need a great dress, there are none to be had. So this dress, in all its floaty, feminine, flattering glory needs to be yours right now. The color looks good on nearly every skin tone, it’s cut to emphasize all your best features and it’s the perfect combination of sexy and ladylike. If you don’t snatch it up, I will.
Dress: Nasty Gal, $225
It might seem obvious, but florals are a must when it comes to spring fashion, especially in the form of loud, obnoxious pants. I’m not a huge fan of floral denim — I may be a 90s baby but girly grunge has its time and place — but a pair of high-waisted flowered pants are a much more sophisticated option. These are about to become your go-to pants for pretty much any occasion, and they can be worn with a lot more than you think: solids, stripes, chambray, you name it. Fun pants equal fun times, so buy ‘em.
Pants: H&M, $24.95