Summer Angst Turned Joy

Ok. So. Here’s the thing. Summer gives me anxiety. Why? (Well, a lot of things give me anxiety) Because of clothes. Summer clothes are only necessary in the worlds I live in for about 5 solid days a year. On these 5 days I can usually get away with jeans, but sometimes I rock a skirt, just because the world should have proof that I have legs. So, if I were to leave the West Coast and go anywhere else for any length of time, I would have nothing appropriate to wear. And guess what, Internet? I realized a few months ago that we will be honeymooning. For 8 days. In Cancun. In July. And I had nothing to wear. Most of my dresses are for work, or tea. And it occurred to me that over the last 2 years of constant moving, I had given away 90% of my skirts to the Good Will. And on top of this? I have no money for vacation clothes. I mean, who can justify buying a full week of clothes for vacation? Not I.

Oh, look at me. I am a bored, wealthy, fashionable tourist in Mexico. What of it?

But you know what the truth is? The truth is, when I don’t have the proper clothes on vacation, or I’m re-wearing the same 3 things again and again and I’m not camping, I feel like shit. I feel self conscious and pissed off that everyone else is having a carefree time in their comfortable clothes while I am sweaty and sticky and everything is too snug because I bloat up in the humidity, and every photo is going to be me in the same goddamn tank top!

Adorable blousy top: $17.99, massively comfortable flowy white skirt: $34.99

For several weeks after realizing that 8 days is not a long weekend, and I will actually need to purchase some items, I mooned over catalogs. I tried to justify 80 dollar sandals, I looked at Maxi dresses that were thin cotton and cost $125. I felt broke and helpless. And then I went to Target.

Jumping for fashion joy!

First of all, Target stuff is CUTE. You have to get over the messy dressing rooms and the walmart feel. You have to set that aside. This isn’t anthropologie, there aren’t couches in the dressing rooms, there isn’t good lighting. This is affordable stuff you’re thrilled to wear (as opposed to being embarrassed, and let me tell you, I am the EXACT opposite of embarrassed).

Perfect cotton dress, that comes in a million colors: $18.00

So, you’ve probably already read about how I hate shorts. But you know what? I really, really hate shorts. They lie to you. They act like they’re all comfy and useful. You don’t have to worry about keeping your legs closed, or a swift breeze exposing your panties to the world. You can run around being all athletic in them, they are what every true adventurer wears.

Totally not shorts.

But what happens when I try to buy shorts? Well. The size I usually am in pants (8) never fits. Ever. They are always way too tight around the waist because my butt pulls on them. The crotches are all generally too small, giving me an instant wedgy and/or muffin top from having to pull the shorts down below my hops. And if that all some how, magically works out, my thighs will push against the shorts when I sit down, and that feels like complete shit. So… yeah. This is a NO SHORTS ZONE.

Totally Banana Republic-esque Dress with the signautre twist right between the boobs!

So, guess what you guys? I think this is the first time I’ll be on vacation feeling comfortable, feeling like I have enough to wear, feeling like I’m not an awkward schlep wrestling with the heat.

For only $20.00!!!!

And I feel so relieved! And excited! For the first time packing is not going to be the worst experience of my life. In fact, I won’t even really have to think about it, just pop a stack of clothes into a suit case and away we go. These clothes may be cheap, but that my friends, is priceless.

And you wanna know my favorite purchase from Target? The most ridiculously fun thing I bought because it was only $19.99?


This totally ridiculous, fringed beach cover up.

Oh no, I didn't. Oh Yes I did.

So here is my PSA to the world. Be free to spend money on clothes you won’t wear every day to work, or for multiple special occasions. Go to Target (not a sponsor), and feel guilt free. Go ahead and buy that amazingly silly 70s cover up, the dress that looks like it came from Banana Republic but costs $20, or the super comfy, flow-y white skirt that you’ve always wanted but never felt cool enough to buy. And for the love of God, don’t feel pressured to buy shorts.

33 thoughts on “Summer Angst Turned Joy”

  1. 1. this is my kind of fashion post. useful. silly. cheap.
    2. i am already the queen of casual summer clothes (living in arizona for 10 years has that effect), but i’m going to take the underlying message of this post as a reason to finally go out and buy work clothes that are appropriate for the season. because half the time, when i think about getting ready for work, i dread it. not because i hate going to work (maybe a little), but because i don’t feel GOOD in so many of my work clothes. and that’s because, being new to the corporate world, i haven’t take the time to invest in things that make me feel attractive and comfortable and workplace appropriate. you’ve pointed out that there’s a lot to be said for the effect that little investments, whether it be in a great office dress or a pair of not-shorts, can have on your self-esteem

    1. Oh my god. I saw SO MANY work clothes at Target. So many. I’m usually a nordstrom work clothes person. I go to the non designer section. ๐Ÿ™‚ But they have slacks, jackets, great blouses etc at Target. I think I’ll go there to supplement my boring usuals.

    2. Target has a great line of pencil skirts and silk shirts which means you can buy one in brown, black and grey then mix and match with shirts! I HATE spending money on clothes (I’m an outlet and thrift store queen) so when I want something new, I hit up the business-y section of Tarjay and get pretty! Also, check the clearance section for basic black dresses and cardigans. Sometimes that stuff is 70% off!

  2. First off, I just have to mention that you not having feet in pretty much any of these shots made my freaking day. =)

    Secondly, shorts are designed for pre-teens, and girls without hips. I do not fall into either of those catagories. But sometimes it’s just too damn hot to care, and I wear them anyway. The photos that make me think “hey, I don’t look so bad in shorts!”? DAMN LIES. Those photos were taken at my skinniest, while I was standing perfectly still. Eff that. And the shorts cutting into your thighs when you sit? GOD I HATE THAT. Why do we put up with this crap?

    (I’m done ranting, promise!)

    Lastly … your new clothes are DAMN CUTE. Makes me want to go to Target and collect coupons/hit up sales for Loft, and find a bunch of sundresses. Yes. Getting on that.

  3. Very, very niiiiiiiiiiice. I need more summer dresses just because I live in skirts and flip flops during the summer, but a dress is even easier. I especially love the pink one. Easy, breezy, beautiful . . . summaaahhhhhh.

  4. You know what I think? I think if you love that adorable pink dress, you should go back and get it in EVERY color…before i do ๐Ÿ˜‰ Everything you picked is sooo cute! Why did it take you so long to discover the awesomeness of Target fashion my dear?! Ill have a fashion surprise for you when you come to Sac..Muhahahaaa ๐Ÿ˜‰

    1. Eeee! Now I’m nervous and excited all at the same time.

      And to be honest, I grew up with target, but their clothes never ever fit me. It was all that Cherokee stuff… and they have just recently inthe last 5 years or so really started doing discount designer brands. I’ve always marveled at other people’s ability to Target it up, I never thought it would work on me!!

      1. Omg CHEROKEE!! LMAO!! I know exactly what you mean! Yes, definitely glad they upgraded. Im pretty sure JC Penny’s still tries to sell Cherokee. I think thats why I never shop there. You want to know where else is a gold mine for cheap finds?? The KOHLS clearance rack!! Im always making out like a bandit there with a new wardrobe :))

      2. I was actually scrolling down to post that I have that same skirt when I saw this comment and just had to comment here. I do love Target; I actually bought my junior prom dress there and then re-wore it for several formal ocassions over the next five years. It was a simple long, black sheeth dress. I don’t shop there anymore because I am plus sized and their cute selection does not extend above size 14. Anything over that is pretty much moo moo stuff. I do my primary cheap shopping at Old Navy and Maurices since their plus sized selection is much wider. Plus, their misses (what a term!) selection is sized larger. I fall at that edge where an extra large is often the right size, but can often be cut much smaller than an actual extra large. Anyway, I happy for your cute clothes and I’m totally inspired to wear my super cute skirt again soon!

  5. Lauren, you look super pretty ๐Ÿ™‚
    My favorite summer dress is green in a flowery print and I got it for 10 EUR . I have used it over and over again, flowy clothes are the best ๐Ÿ™‚ You are gonna have so much fun, make sure you go to some little towns around and see the “real” Mexico. Or maybe you can go to Holbox for a day and see the whale sharks, while it is still possible ?

  6. My wardrobe is at least 55% Target. The only shorts I own that I actually like to wear are from there. And that pink dress makes me want to go to Target right NOW and purchase it in six colors. It looks like exactly what this 103 degree weather for 4 straight days calls for.

  7. I feel you about the no-shorts things. I gave up shorts and spent a few summers MISERABLE. Did I mention I live in Florida? For at least two months, it’s way too hot to wear jeans, even at night. Then I switched to skirts, both short and long, and BAM. I am about 100 million times happier.
    The best part for me is that because I’m super-short, I can buy mini’s and still look respectable. Bonus!

  8. You are too cute Lauren! I’m dying.

    And hells yes on the Target honeymoon clothes. I did the same kinda thing at H&M. So worth it, especially when we live in SF, and like you said, only really can wear this stuff like 5 random days a year.
    V. cute!

  9. I’m always joking that I hand my paycheck straight over to Target, but on top of that, our Target just became a SUPER TARGET by adding groceries. now I will probably never shop anywhere else ever again.

    1. We go grocery shopping there ALL. OF. THE. TIME. I even really like their produce. That place is amazing.

      and… all of our wedding thank you cards are from target. We got 50 of them for $13 bucks and they are SO CUTE.

  10. swimsuit cover-up?! I thought it was a regular shirt. I wear it like a regular shirt… but I have the blue one. ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. ahhh hahaha well I think I just made that up. I’m making it work for me. ๐Ÿ˜‰ But if you can rock it as a shirt then I am in AWE of you.

  11. I am going to target and buying that dress. If it comes in black I’m buying that too! I’ve had the same dress in black for 6 years and it’s time to GO! I wear it at least once a week and the material has gotten so thin that if I stand in the right light you can see my ass. Ack!

    As I type this, I am wearing a Target that dress that makes me look like a skinny bombshell. I paid $30 for it but it fits like a dream and is so classic.

    Love you Target!

  12. Shorts are evil, although I will wear capris. Tomorrow after work (or more realistically on my lunch break because i have a concert to go to after work) I am so going to Target in search of a new dress or two and I’m totally blaming you.

  13. I have two pairs of shorts that fit me nicely (read, at all really) and one of them I bought in Middle School. MIDDLE SCHOOL!

    I have a fashion question, from an East Coast girl honeymooning in Cali in August, will I melt? Or am I going to regret leaving the big sweaters at home. I HAVE NO IDEA. I need help.

  14. I want to go to Target noooooowwwww! (unfortunately, I’m on a shopping hiatus for the uhhh year, LOL. Yeah, it sucks).

    Super cute stuff – I would always make a Target stop before my yearly 3 week grad school trips overseas. The stuff is comfy, cute, and with a cardigan and heels and jewelry, can be dressed up for a play or fancy restaurant. Plus, it’s usually jersey which means it packs well and no wrinkles! I really like that beach cover-up, too… could see it doubling as a boho top…

    And yeah, I have 1 pair of (non-workout) shorts. Every time I wear them and sit down I remember why I dislike the whole idea of shorts. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  15. The last time I shopped at Target I spent three times the amount of money I intended to. I agree that they have cute stuff, but I can still spend too much there and feel guilty.

    And I love that coverup! So cute.

  16. I <3 your Targรฉt summer wardrobe. And I wanna hear more about this honeymooooonโ€”where're you stayin? Whacha doin? ๐Ÿ™‚ Post!

  17. Omg!! Yes target is like crack ๐Ÿ™‚ and can I just say….WELL DONE….that pink dress with the batwing sleeves (yes that is what they are calling it these days, I did some research) looks straight out of my closet ๐Ÿ™‚ I WANT I WANT!! Great post my dear, exactly what we needed!

  18. I HATE shorts and haven’t worn them since I was a child. I decided that I needed one pair this summer, for those times when capris are too hot and a dress is not appropriate (like camping or when I was just in Chichen Itza, Mexico). Solution: Gap “Boyfriend” Shorts…just don’t roll them up like the leggy models do. They don’t bunch up and they keep my legs from rubbing together, voila! My Mom almost died when she saw a picture of ME in shorts. Just a suggestion should you need to go down that wicked path ๐Ÿ™‚

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