Warm-Weather Basics with 2010 Flair
Actress Peggy Lipton
turns up the temperature in pants that let you breathe, eye-popping tunics and fun, mixed-up necklaces.
Getting ready for the beach is a snap—literally—in a linen-jersey tank dress (The T by Joe's, $108) that's soft and body-friendly. Lipton's looks great over a fuchsia bikini top (Caffé Swimwear, $172 for set), finished off with one of her signature raffia hats (Flora Bella). In summer it's smart to carry a tissue-weight scarf (Me & Kashmiere) to cover the arms or loop around the neck. Multicolored rope sandals (Belle by Sigerson Morrison) and telephone wire bangles (Diane von Furstenberg) add a crafty touch.
This ravishing little number is from dress maven Diane von Furstenberg ($385), a woman who knows how to do flattering. Because it's knotted and draped, it gives you a terrific shape without being tight or structured. And its dual personality—the bottom layer is an animal-print cotton; the top, a subtly patterned silk chiffon—makes it an excellent day-to-night dress. Lipton likes the tawny colors: "Something warm and light around your face is really important." Shoes, Jonathan Kelsey.
There's something fresh and innocently sexy about a peasant blouse (Boulee, $319): You can let it slip sensuously off the shoulder or pull the drawstrings tighter to make it more fitted at the neck and hip. For a day at the beach, pop it on over a swimsuit (Aéropostale bikini top, $12.50) and white jean shorts (Michael Michael Kors, $70); for lunch in town, try it with khakis. And how cute are the bright green cork-sole thongs (Original Dr. Scholl's)? They're as comfy on your feet as a walk in the sand. Necklace, Ayala Bar.
A plaid shirt (Arnold Zimberg, $175) and slouchy pants (IRO, $158) have a soft, washed-out texture and slightly sun-bleached palette...as if you've been wearing them in for years. The pants won't look like pajama bottoms if you add substantial accessories: a necklace that whimsically combines chains and appliqués (Malandrino), a patchwork bag (Jamin Puech), and glamorous platform clogs (Chanel) that Lipton calls "insane!" (she has a thing for tall shoes). Tank, American Eagle Outfitters, $16.
Most of us would rather not display every inch of our bodies on the beach, and many cover-ups are too skimpy or flashy. This generously cut cotton gauze shirt (Cosabella Mare, $142) is neither: It supplies plenty of thigh, tush, and arm camouflage, and the darker color makes your lower half look more slender. Lipton buttons it over an elaborately beaded halter-neck swimsuit (Caffé Swimwear, $258) that you could also use as a bodysuit with a wide skirt or palazzo pants. Scarf, Me & Kashmiere.
KNOW YOUR LINES
Because it's tied at the waist and the silk is slightly sheer, this caftan (Jean Paul Gaultier Maille Femme, $795) never feels too voluminous. Although Lipton wears it over a coordinating maillot (Jean Paul Gaultier Maille Femme, $395), it would also work well for entertaining at home, perhaps with a single striking necklace (Disaya) and bare feet. "The stripes remind me of North Africa," says the well-traveled Lipton. "I'm not usually a 'statement' dresser—I'm more under the radar—but I think summer is a good time to experiment with something bold and fabulous."Next: More great summer basics: 7 new ways to wear khakis in 2010