minimalist summer fashion on apartment 34

If you’ve been a friend of Apartment 34 for a long time, then you know that we used to talk about fashion – a lot. Fashion was actually my first love – if you hit up the Personal Style section on the site you’ll see, I actually used to get dressed, and enjoy it! I still remember attending my very first show at New York Fashion Week and breaking down in tears – I was so moved. Like what we put in our homes, what we put on our bodies is a powerful tool to not only express who we are but also who we want to be in the world. As we began to emerge from our pandemic pods and actually leave the house again, it’s both exciting and slightly terrifying to think about getting out of my sweats and back into real clothes. I’m been worried I’ve forgotten how.

My fears were not eased when I began to do a little online shopping for a new piece or two to enjoy this summer and found myself bombarded by nothing but puffy sleeves, tiny floral prints, and more ruffles than you’d find on a 1980s prom dress. Now don’t get me wrong – some people can rock these looks like there is no tomorrow. Many of my friends are among those who do. I however am not one of them. I need clean, timeless, minimal, and nothing more. No frills or feeling like I stepped straight out of the prairie here, please.

I posted about my fashion confusion on Instagram Stories last week and got SO many responses from people with a similar feeling that I made it my mission to unearth any and all minimal, classic summer staples that will help you ease out of our Covid hibernation. The fact that it took me nearly a week to amass decent options says a lot about how hard classic styles are to find right now!

But scroll below – I think I’ve compiled a variety of simple summer options in varying price points that will keep us LBD-loving, simple silhouette-wearing, would rather wear pants anyway people, well dressed all summer long. While I focused on dresses for my shopping list, thanks to so many of your recommendations, I amassed a list of go-brands if you’re in the market for things like a simple jumpsuit, timeless tanks, easy shorts, and other classic summer pieces that don’t make you look like you’re about to go milk the farm’s cow.



Apiece Apart


Rag and Bone

Rachel Pally

Nili Lotan

Ozma of California

Another Tomorrow


Laude the Label



I’m going to be adding more pieces to The Apt34 Shop all week, including some cute and crazy affordable summer bags and sandals so keep checking back. The hunt for a summer uniform is officially on.

It feels a little painful to type the word fall on July 19, but with a kid starting school in less than a month, fall season does feel a little around the corner. Hence why, as much as I might resist, I do love the annual Nordstrom Anniversary Sale. For those new to this game (all two of you that are left) the Anniversary Sale puts new fall styles on sale now – like when you actually want fresh stuff, rather than waiting until season’s end. Genius, I know. The sale opened to the public today, and while I feel like either it gets a little less stellar every year (or maybe I’m just getting extra picky in my old age) there are a few gems that I’m definitely scooping up and I thought you might be interested in them too.

You will find my tightest of tight N-Sale edit below. But shop fast. The super cute pair of Levis I was planning to get already sold out. Grrrr.

I’ve talked before about how motherhood kinda stole my fashion mojo, but as I planned my month long sojourn in Italy, I was determined to inject a little style into my stay. I deemed it my vacay persona – aka not how I dress in day-to-day life, but rather the best vacation version of myself. Being very intentional about what I what I wanted to wear also meant I put a ton of time and planning into packing – so much so that I was able to carry on over three week’s worth of wardrobe. Now that is a travel miracle.

But don’t you worry, I’m going to share exactly how I did it!

How to Pack for a Month in a Carry-on on apartment 34 How to Pack for a Month in a Carry-on on apartment 34

While I usually only wear jeans, I decided Italian summer heat required dresses. Given that they’re a complete outfit all in one, a dress is actually very practical for travel. The last thing you want to do is waste time worrying about putting an outfit together. A dress does all the work for you. This classic button down tank dress was the perfect piece to dress up with a statement earring and heels or dress down with simple sandals. It’s also crazy affordable and I wore it constantly.

How to Pack for a Month in a Carry-on on apartment 34 How to Pack for a Month in a Carry-on on apartment 34

One of my favorite finds for this trip was this two piece look from Apiece Apart. Made from super lightweight poplin, this outfit became my go-to look for wandering the smoldering streets of Rome. I could also swap in a simple white tank top or tee to create three different looks while hardly taking up any precious cargo space.

How to Pack for a Month in a Carry-on on apartment 34 How to Pack for a Month in a Carry-on on apartment 34

I think I would officially live in a linen shift dress. This one is by Rachel Craven. The midi-length and sleeves were ideal for visiting Italian churches where modesty is often required. The sandals are Zara from last year and the bag a good amazon steal! II used zip pouches for essentials like sunglasses, sunscreen and my wallet.

How to Pack for a Month in a Carry-on on apartment 34 How to Pack for a Month in a Carry-on on apartment 34 

I scored this sweet linen shirt dress from my friend Em’s new enterprise Encourage Vintage. It reminded of what someone might have worn while shopping the local Italian village’s Sunday market in decades past. I modernized the look with a woven belt bag – my new go-to travel accessory. I have sworn off carrying a bulky bag ever again!

How to Pack for a Month in a Carry-on on apartment 34 How to Pack for a Month in a Carry-on on apartment 34

This lace and cotton dress was the perfect mix of drama and complete comfort in the crazy Italian heat. Pairing it with a pair of wrapped sandals (this pair is similar to what I’m wearing) and a cute woven bag offered just the right amount of dressiness I was looking for on this trip.

But now, how did I fit all of this (and more!) into a carry-on?? Becoming a pro packer is actually pretty simple.

Step 1, meticulously plan your outfits. This way you will be sure to not overpack. For 27 days of travel, I created the following packing plan:

  • 8 dresses
  • 2 jumpsuits
  • 1 pair of shorts
  • 1 pair of pants
  • 3 tops
  • 1 set of PJs
  • 1 robe
  • 3 pairs of sandals
  • underwear
  • 3 swimsuits

Combined that created 16 outfits. I simply did laundry throughout the trip or washed my underwear in the sink! I planned to shop if I got really sick of my choices, but I never had to.

Step 2, get yourself some packing cubes stat. Packing cubes are a gift from the travel gods. These little cubes allow you to compress your clothes into the smallest cubic inches possible. This is your primary goal – maximize all the space you have. Additional pro tip – roll your clothes and put them in the cube, rather than fold and stack them. You’re able to fit a lot more in each cube that way.

Step 3, take the time to get all your favorite beauty products in travel size. It made sure I had minis of all my necessities – toothpaste, haircare, skincare, all the things. You can still have all your favorites at the ready SpaceNK was my go-to for hair and makeup. Additional pro tip: there is so much amazing skincare in Europe (and the EU bans 1,328 chemicals from beauty products while the US bans just 30) so instead of weighing your suitcase down, scoop up as many goodies as you can while there.

Step 4, wear all your warmest, bulkiest clothes on the plane. Sneakers, jeans if need be, jacket, sweater, etc. You know it’s going to be freezing anyway.

Step 5, wear your sun hat on the plane too. You can usually find room for it in the overhead bins on international flights as so many people still check their bags.

A few other little tips – look for wrinkle resistant fabrics if you can. Wrinkled dresses drove me a bit crazy, but luckily I could get an iron almost everywhere we stayed (details on that coming next week!). Also avoid synthetic fabrics. I had one poly-blend dress and it made me sweat like crazy! I also packed my belt bags in a large, but light purse that served was my “personal item.” Things like my camera, computer, makeup pouch (I only used make-up items, are you interested in what they were??) and my travel wallet.

If I, a consummate over packer, can be reformed, so can you. I’ve rounded up some of my favorite summer travel essentials below. If you have any failsafe travel or packing tips, please share them in comments. I just booked my next international adventure and I want to do even better on the next trip!

photography for apartment 34 by andrea posadas creative

I’m still putting the finishing touches on my recap of Scandinavia for you, but one of biggest takeaways is actually fashion related. I saw one particular style literally everywhere I went, and I even embraced it myself. Call it a fanny pack or a belt bag, it doesn’t matter because this bag should be come your new best friend.

The Fanny Pack is Back & Really Really Good Looking on apartment 34

Yes, I too was embarrassed of my parents wearing fanny packs in the 80’s. I might have even had one too. But the fanny pack has made a major come back over the last couple of seasons and this go-round they have a whole new layer of fashion. Think leather, skinny straps and killer details. Oh and did you catch the memo – the way to wear the belt bag is cross body.

The Fanny Pack is Back & Really Really Good Looking on apartment 34

After years of carting around a mom bag stuffed for every possible contingency, there is an immense sense of independence in enjoying your day completely hands free.

The Fanny Pack is Back & Really Really Good Looking on apartment 34 The Fanny Pack is Back & Really Really Good Looking on apartment 34

While the fanny pack might not be the most practical on a day-to-day basis, it is perfect for a date night, a Sunday brunch and while you’re traveling. I loved rocking my fanny pack in Sweden and I’m already hunting for the perfect option (or two!) to carry me through my upcoming summer escape in Italy (more details on that coming soon!).

I’ve rounded up my top fashionable fanny pack contenders below. I’m curious, have you embraced this trend yet??

image 1 / 2 / 3 / 4

Happy Monday friends! I hope everyone has been enjoying these first few days of spring. If you don’t mind, I wanted to share something a bit personal with you today. It’s been a bit since I pulled back the curtain on my life. In just a couple short weeks, my son will be turning four. While I feel like I’ve finally gotten a handle on many aspects of motherhood and mom boss life, I’ve continued to struggle with the simple prospect of…getting dressed.

There are a litany of reasons for this. Obviously, I had that tiny human (and also kinda birthed This Old Victorian at the same time). I work from home, often going days without seeing anyone during the day. It also doesn’t help that it took me more than three years to feel like my body has returned to (almost) normal. That definitely makes loving your clothes a lot more difficult.

But prior to pregnancy I loved fashion. Style was kinda my thang (have you ever checked out my old personal style posts, or our old Monday Workwear series?? I still kinda miss that one). But for the past year or two, I’ve looked at my (admittedly fully stocked) closet and have had no idea how to put a decent outfit together! It’s turned into quite a problem.

A Spring Wardrobe Refresh on apartment 34

Let’s face it, we all get in a rut with our closets from time to time.  But I’ve been feeling more stuck than that. My closet was actually becoming an overwhelming source of stress in my life so I just avoided it entirely. My yoga pants were just the easier option. But the easy way out isn’t much fun.

But getting in a style rut doesn’t mean we need to toss out our entire closet and start from scratch. Sometimes we just need a fresh eye to remind ourselves why we bought certain pieces in the first place.Thankfully, my girlfriend and fellow OG  blogger Christine is a professional personal stylist and she recently paid me visit to help me shop my very own wardrobe – and we captured the whole experience on video for you!

A Spring Wardrobe Refresh on apartment 34 A Spring Wardrobe Refresh on apartment 34

Christine takes a very intentional approach to her client work. She helps you reevaluate your current closet and purge what no longer brings you joy. That’s a key step – we rarely evaluate all the clothes we own. It’s truly an eye opening (read terrifying) experience – and is much easier tackled with a buddy to help you through it! Once the clutter is cleared, you finally have enough space to rediscover pieces you love and remember why you bought them in the first place.

Since I no longer have the luxury of taking a lot of time to get ready in the morning, Christine helped me identify my version of a cool mom uniform (sorry silk shirts, I no longer really have any use for you). She then helped me see how to layer back in pieces from my pre-mom life, amping up my style for things like business meetings, date nights and special occasions. Prime takeaway; never underestimate the power of a good pair of heels! Even though I so rarely wear any of my fancy shoes now, I’m glad I’ve held onto all my pretty ponies.

When I took my trip to Scandinavia a couple weeks back I really made a point to diligently wardrobe plan, picking through my closet and selecting the pieces that I felt both stylish but also comfortable in (I have a whole story saved on Instagram about that btw!). As we move into the new season, I’m making a point to plan out my spring wardrobe, selecting all of my go-to looks in advance and adding in a few fun accessories to take things up a notch.

You can check out an example of my spring wardrobe plan below.

A Spring Wardrobe Refresh on apartment 34

SHOP: sneakers / tee / jeans / blazer / necklace / sunnies / sandals / tote / heels 

It’s amazing how much better you feel about yourself when you take that little extra effort to put together a good outfit. Now I feel like I can do that quickly and easily – and I didn’t even have to buy anything new.

To see how Christine helped me shop my own wardrobe – and how you can do it too – watch our video below! Eager to hear if any of you struggle with similar challenges.

To check out Christine’s styling services, CLICK HERE.

To check out how I designed my closet, CLICK HERE. 

photography & video by andrea posadas creative

Ok, the shearling thing has been happening in furniture for a bit now and I’m very into it, but I’d been reluctant to jump on the teddy bear coat bandwagon. Until this season. They’ve just gotten so good that I may have gone from zero shearling coats to now having three different styles in my closet. And I kinda just want to live in them all year long (thankfully with San Francisco’s unpredictable weather you can do that).

Let me show you why.

The Coat You Still Need this Winter on apartment 34 The Coat You Still Need this Winter on apartment 34 The Coat You Still Need this Winter on apartment 34 The Coat You Still Need this Winter on apartment 34 The Coat You Still Need this Winter on apartment 34The Coat You Still Need this Winter on apartment 34

It’s nice to have cozy option to throw on on the way home from the gym. A simple shearling bomber coat is perfect for that look. Something knee-length is ideal for a day at the offie or to wear out on a date night. Then you must have an elevated version with killer leather details. Just because you can.

I get stopped and complimented on my teddy coats each time I wear one. They’re extra huggable too! I’ve rounded up a few of my favorite teddy coat options for you below. They cover the range of styles and price points. Bonus of buying a winter coat in February? Many are on sale! I promise you’ll still want to snuggle up in one of these babies come spring.

The Coat You Still Need this Winter on apartment 34The Coat You Still Need this Winter on apartment 34

What do you think? Are you feeling this trend?

shearling coats from arje / the arrivals / need supply / zara

So I have a little secret. I’ve been carrying it around with me for more than 20 years now. But it’s time I think I finally come clean with you. I have terrible vision. Not just a little bad. Not kinda bad. Like I can’t see six inches in front of my face bad. But after the trauma of getting eyeglasses as a child in the 80’s – they weren’t cute my friends – I swore I’d never wear glasses again. And here I am, decades later still hiding my terrible eyesight with contacts.

But in the intervening years, it turns out eyeglasses have gotten way cuter, way less expensive and much less of a pain to get. Case in point, Zenni. Since discovering this amazing site, you can consider me a glasses convert!

Why My Eyeglasses are My New Favorite Fall Accessory on apartment 34

Cute right?! I’ve always been convinced I just can’t look good in glasses, but Zenni has the largest collection of affordable glasses online. And their website has the coolest technology – you can upload a picture of yourself and actually preview what a pair of glasses will look like on your own face! So genius. After taking Zenni’s quiz to determine the ideal frames for my face shape, I flipped through a million styles, from ultra modern to uber hipster before settling on these cute round tortoiseshell frames in a chestnut hue. And I love them! I consider it an eyeglasses miracle.

Ordering my glasses through Zenni was so super easy too. It’s key that any glasses I wear fit and are well made cuz I really really need them to see. To order from Zenni, I simply inputed the prescription numbers my eye doctor emailed me, selected my picture perfect frames, and then I got to add a variety of the bells and whistles Zenni offers – every pair of their glasses come with a UV protection and an anti-scratch coating, but I nearly decided to get lenses that convert into sunglasses! Maybe on the next pair. The frames arrived at my door with their own case and cleaning cloth and I’m really impressed with the fit. These frames are super light and super comfortable. Nothing reminiscent of my childhood glasses nightmare.

What do you think? So good right?? I’m so feeling this new glasses look that I decided I needed to do a little shopping for a fresh fall outfit to highlight them.

Why My Eyeglasses are My New Favorite Fall Accessory on apartment 34

Thankfully, just down the block from my favorite co-working space, the Assembly, (you caught my tour of it right??) sits one of another San Francisco gem – the concept boutique called Le Point. They carry super unique pieces, hard to find brands and local Bay Area designers. Plus the store is just real purdy. Added bonus.

Le Point boutique in San Francisco on apartment 34Why My Eyeglasses are My New Favorite Fall Accessory on apartment 34

While I usually associate wearing glasses with hiding at home in my pjs, there’s something about these frames that make me want to dress a little smarter. A chic sweater. Maybe a midi-dress. Or a really really good coat. Ready to do some serious business.

Why My Eyeglasses are My New Favorite Fall Accessory on apartment 34 Why My Eyeglasses are My New Favorite Fall Accessory on apartment 34

I was loving how the warm caramel of the sweater played up my tortoiseshell frames and the balloon sleeve offered an interesting detail. I think I’d pair them with my favorite high waisted black culottes and a patent leather slide.

Why My Eyeglasses are My New Favorite Fall Accessory on apartment 34 Why My Eyeglasses are My New Favorite Fall Accessory on apartment 34Le Point boutique in San Francsico on apartment 34Why My Eyeglasses are My New Favorite Fall Accessory on apartment 34

I had so much fun day-dreaming about new looks in which to strut my new glasses-wearing style. Are you thinking I should add that yummy brown sweater to my options? Zenni’s eyewear selection if so affordable and they offer so many varying styles, I’m actually considering picking up another pair or two to create a whole slew of new fall looks! Do I hear a second?

For more fall style inspiration, CLICK HERE.


original photography for apartment 34 by andrea posadas

This post is a paid collaboration with Zenni. All thoughts and opinions expressed are 100% my own. Thanks for supporting collaborations that we’re excited about and that keep Apt34’s doors open.

I have a little fashion story to share with you today. Back in the 2000’s (in another life it seems) I worked in politics in Washington, DC. I commuted daily on the Metro, packed in like sardines with my fellow suit-clad commuters. Many of the woman wore sneakers. Bright white, mom sneakers. This wasn’t a choice motivated by fashion – quite the opposite – it was pure utility. And it looked pretty terrible (sorry ladies).

As an early 20-something I looked at these women and scoffed. I swore I would never forgo my heals. You would never catch me trudging down the sidewalk in sneakers before swapping in my heels at the office.

a modern way to wear a suit on apartment 34 a modern way to wear a suit on apartment 34 a modern way to wear a suit on apartment 34

Fast forward. I’ve long since left politics, or any kind of office for that matter, but I’ve recently noticed a fresh suit trend sweeping across street style. But this time the wearers don’t seem to be headed to stuffy, traditional offices, though perhaps they could be. Instead, it appears the suit is being worn simply as a killer ensemble.

But here’s the kicker (pun intended). You can rock these suits with sneakers! This time, the footwear isn’t meant to ease commuting – though it certainly would. Instead, many a very cool lady are rocking the suit + sneakers just for the swagger and I’m loving it.

a modern way to wear a suit on apartment 34

There are a few keys to this trend. The look of these suits definitely has a 80’s vibe. They tend to be double breasted and a little slouchy. A little oversized. Makes me think of Murphy Brown (dating myself! can you believe it’s coming back??). If you’re feeling sassy you can rock your jacket sans shirt beneath. The pants are usually cropped to show off that ankle.

a modern way to wear a suit on apartment 34a modern way to wear a suit on apartment 34

The key with the shoe is to kick your runners to the curb (thought the ugly sneaker is also making a comeback). Instead, a slim white sneaker creates a streamlined look.

While I can go weeks without actually departing my house for any substantial human contact, there’s no reason not to at least look like I might be headed to a meeting. I think I kept one of my suits from my DC days. Maybe it’s time I finally pull it back out of my closet. There’s a chance a 20-something might scoff at this mix of fashion and practicality. I’m completely ok with that.

What do you think??

For more fall style inspiration, CLICK HERE.

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Finding your style is a bit like a never-ending quest. I’ve certainly swung from one side of the style pendulum to the other (evidenced here). But with fall around the corner (sorry to break it to you), I’ve been thinking about my favorite fashion season – and how I’m excited to get dressed again! No Lululemon allowed. This post from 2016 still sits at the tippy top of my style goals. Appears I may have officially found my uniform.

Fall is always the best style season of the year. Before you’re buried under winter coats, but the summer’s glow has yet to fade, now is the time to play. You can have fun with proportion, with textures, with adding a little edge. I’ve always been a fan of menswear influenced style. It gives off a subtle sexiness while being incredibly practical for daily life; think wide-legged pants, flats and a cozy sweater or two. When you mix them all together you get a decidedly strong, but thoroughly feminine approach to taking on the new season on in style.

Continue to scroll for some of my go-to favorite looks.

your fall uniform on apartment 34

Extra-wide culottes paired with a snug sweater have me like whoa. Especially in this creamy, caramel-y warm color palette. And yes…those so ugly they’re really ridiculously good looking shoes are starting to appeal to me too.

your fall uniform on apartment 34

All white is always alright in my book. Those denim culottes are also calling my name and I just might have to add a white blouse to my white shirt arsenal.

your fall uniform on apartment 34

A classic trouser feels fresh when it’s cropped and is an easy thing to get you out of my your denim rut. I love the dress up / dress down combo of a classic tee and loafers.

your fall uniform on apartment 34

A touch of blush & metallic lend a girlie touch to borrowed from the boys staples like bomber jackets and more loafers. Metallic is a bonus.

your fall uniform on apartment 34

A peacoat never goes out of style. To make it more wearable in this early part of fall when the weather just can’t make up its mind, pair yours with some bright whites and a chunky open toe sandal.

I’m a big fan of adding a few choice pieces to my closet around this time of year. Especially ones I know I’ll love for a long time – rather than just buying into the it-trend of the moment. Any of these options would make my closet very very happy for years to come.

For even more fall fashion inspiration, follow my My Style Pinterest board HERE

images via goop

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