This post is inspired by Julia's "JF Essentials" post, which was inspired by one on Saint Mindy's blog. What follows is a small, tightly edited list of the clothing and grooming items I find myself reaching for on a regular basis.
1. K. Jacques Valerie Metallic Thin Thong
Flip-flop fanatics, don't take offense, but I hate them. I don't know if its the unpleasant toe-wedgies or loud slapping noise they make or the way they make even the most graceful girls adopt a waddle-like walk, but I avoid flip flops at all cost. K. Jacques' metallic thongs are a more polished but just as effortless option. I bought these a few years ago, and I wear them almost everyday in the summer.
$195 at shopbop.com
$195 at shopbop.com
2. James Perse Long Tank
Most tank tops I've owned stretch out and lose their shape after only a few washings. Not these ones, though. They're super-streamlined and flattering, and they stay that way - in fact, they only get softer and better fitting over time. A little pricey for a tank top, to be sure - but worth it.
3. Levi's eco Low Skinny 531 Jeans
Why these jeans are my favorite: a.) they're made of organic cotton; b.) they're $68 - a bargain, given the inflated prices of the denim market; c.) they're flattering and make my legs look a mile long, in a dark rinse with a body-conscious cut and hint of spandex; d.) people always compliment me when I wear them. Need I say more?
4. Hoop Earrings
I got my ears pierced a few months ago (Ms. York even went with me and held my hand - what a gal), and since then I've loved being able to enhance my outfits with the perfect pair of earrings. Classic but bohemian, large hoops fit the rich hippie, Ali MacGraw-inspired look I've been cultivating lately.
5. Alisha Levine Tops
$178 $124.60, shopbop.com
I love Alisha Levine tops because they're basic (but definitely not business) in the front, party in the back - so you can look good coming but even better going.
6. Dior Show Mascara
I'm a mascara fiend, and I probably wear too much of it. I love Maybelline's Great Lash and Benefit's Bad Gal Lash, but Dior Show is really, truly the ultimate. Plus, Giselle once said in an interview that it "makes your eyelashes look like butterflies," and who doesn't want that?
7. Karoo Mark Eisen Cashmere Dress
$352 $243, labelspree.com
Hands down, one of my favorite articles of clothing. Seriously, there's nothing like slipping on this cashmere dress on a chilly morning - it's so simple, yet so luxurious. And it's incredibly versatile - I wear it with a leather jacket and ankle boots for a trendy downtown look; with a plaid capelet, tights, and high-heeled booties for a classy, Park Avenue vibe; with thick ribbed stockings and riding boots for running errands; or bare-legged with heels when it's warmer out. Strangely, the model looks a little lumpy, but in real life this dress is incredibly flattering. And, hello - say "yes" to Spanx.
8. MBT M. Walk Shoes
Have you heard the hype about MBTs? They're supposed to take the stress of running and walking off your knees while toning your butt and legs. And it's all true. Plus, they're cute in an odd, Olsen-twin kind of way. I bought mine on super-sale, so keep your eyes peeled - because, let's face it, a quarter-grand is a little steep for shoes you'll sweat in.