Since the weather is getting cooler, I’m finding myself drifting off to the sweet summertime memories of sunshine and sand. One of my favorite daydream escapes is reliving the beauty of Southern California. I’ve been there twice, the most recent trip being perhaps one of the most fashionably and culturally inspiring experiences of my life–thanks to the smorgasbord of a crowd along the bustling shores of Venice Beach.
Now, I’ve traveled very little in my life. I’m just a small town suburban New England girl who’s lived in pretty much the same place for like, ever. But I do know beauty when I see it and I do know style just the same. And this place is busting at the seams with both.
Pop culture and Hollywood has painted a romantic picture of California for those of us who haven’t been. And it IS as beautiful as you can imagine, but it’s not just the beaches and the palm trees. Half of that beauty is the people. Especially along Venice Beach, you’ll find hippies and hipsters and beach bums. There are fashionistas, artists, wealthy folks, and homeless ones too. There are freaks and dog people and tourists and skaters and body builders. Pretty much every single kind of person you could ever think of and they’re all in one place and they’re all doing different things. It makes for the best people watching.
What I remember most:
Here’s a look I love which is so very California. I mean, girls just don’t look like this in Boston. We don’t wear boots with shorts, we don’t wear hats and bandanas, and we can’t not cut our hair for ten years without looking ridiculous or horrible. It’s just not done here, but along Venice beach this look was THE look, and it was absolutely gorgeous. Laid back and bohemian beauty to die for.
I remember this young, very good looking, very well dress couple walking along the more fancy side of Venice Beach. They looked like a million bucks, and they were probably worth a million bucks now that I think about it. But the girl was in this very short white long sleeve dress, with her hair really really long and ombre blonde, and wearing the cutest, highest, white wrap wedges I have ever seen. They were breathtaking (the beauty of the outfit and the couple.) Again, another look you don’t really see on the East coast.
Seriously this girl was just leisurely strolling about with something very similar-looking to these 5 inch beauties on her feet. And it didn’t even phase her.
Photo of Moda Operandi Artistic Director, Taylor Tomasi Hill, before Peter Som at New York Fashion week in September 2012. I saw a girl dressed in a very similar outfit walking along the beach with her cute little dog. The only difference was that she had a very sleek brunette bob, the shirt was purple chambray, and she wore flat loafer slippers. Now this is a look I feel like I could pull of. Very simple and very classy.
Wait, there are actually real people out there that look like this? I though they only existed in Abercrombie ads but apparently they hang out on the shores of California too. All tanned and blonde and beautiful.
I recommend you take the trip yourself if you’ve never been. I would love to go back but until that time I will just be California dreaming.
More inspiration here.