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’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??

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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

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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I used to have the luxury of spending a lot of time thinking about clothes. They were fun, they were a way to express myself, they were a way to make a statement to the world and if we’re all being honest, clothes are often a means competing with others. For my April edit, I’m taking a very different tact.

But as years have passed and life has gotten much more full, my perspective on getting dressed has shifted dramatically. Now don’t get my wrong, I still fully agree with the ethos of every makeover show that’s ever existed – how you dress is your initial calling card to world so you don’t want to mail it in. But that desire to one up, to out do, or to draw attention feels so childish now.

the april edit on apartment 34

What if your closet was only housed timeless, classic, high quality staples that looked good and made you feel good every time you put them on? What if your closet was trend free so you didn’t feel the need to purge and replenish after every season, but instead you could pull a piece out like you’re saying hello to an old friend?

My closet is slowly but surely headed in that direction and you know what I no longer spend hours doing (nor even really have the urge to do?!)? Shop! Once you build a closet full of beautiful pieces that let you revel in daily life, rather than worry about what you’re wearing all of that distraction falls away. And I never thought I’d say this but it feels great.

Because life is complicated. Getting dressed shouldn’t have to be.

the april edit on apartment 34

SHOP: nikes / rachel comey jeans / madewell tunic / denim loafers / leather bomber jacket / luggage / sunnies / hoop earrings / purse / gray t-shirt / denim jacket


There are a few more staples I’d like to add to my rotation this spring. These days I live in high quality t-shirts. They’re flattering. They’re comfortable and you can layer them with everything. And when you invest in a good one, they don’t pill or stretch and so don’t have to be replaced nearly as often.

I’m obsessed with denim jackets that have a little edge. An oversized silhouette. A cropped sleeve. Maybe some patchwork. Something that makes the jacket just a little different. It makes the piece and therefore your look a little more special.

The perfect cream wide-leg jean. You will wear them for years. The end.

The exception to my fill your closet with basics rule is shoes. I do love to have a little fun with my footwear and these denim loafers with a big ole bow totally fit that bill.

Anyone else have itchy feet? I want to take my entire spring edit, shove in it a cute suitcase and jet off to a beautiful destination. Maybe I should go back to Greece this year.



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As the tulips begin to bloom and the cherry trees bud out, I’m feeling SO excited for the arrival of spring! After a season of nothing of heavy jackets and heavier news headlines here’s hoping the new season tap dances in all airy and light.

While you’re probably being inundated by the “what you need right now” posts, rather than frantically try to incorporate this season’s “trends” into your world, why not opt for timeless, classic silhouettes, less is more design and quality staples that you’ll love for years to come. Refined style all the way baby.

refined spring style on apartment 34refined spring style on apartment 34refined spring style on apartment 34refined spring style on apartment 34refined spring style on apartment 34refined spring style on apartment 34refined spring style on apartment 34refined spring style on apartment 34

The formula for classic style is fairly straightforward. Step one: pick a monochromatic color palette and run with it. White is my favorite pretty much all year round, but then comes camel, gray and maybe a touch of navy. Exciting? Not necessarily but you’ll never look at your closet nor your living room and suddenly hate what you see. I’m really loving a head to toe monochromatic look – or a tone on tone room.

And even though they’re called basics, minimal pieces – be they for your closet or your home – can be anything but. If you invest in high-quality materials – think cashmere, Japanese linen, good chunky knits, supple leathers – the craftsmanship is going to stand out in the fast-fashion (and fast everything) crowd. And the details don’t have to be boring. I’m obsessed with the oversized cuff of Anna Quan’s shirts. Levi’s and Citizens of Humanity are doing some very cool vintage denim. High waists, good tailoring or dramatically oversized pieces keep your look feeling fresh.

For your home, think about just going along and removing the top layer of crap. While stuff can add personality and texture to your home, it can also begin to suffocate the space. If you boil things down to what is truly essential or truly gorgeous, you’ll find you appreciate what’s around you more. When things get overstuffed I feel like our eyes don’t see them anymore. I love really architectural bowls or ceramics. A refined bench in a hallway or a large piece of art leaning against a wall catches your eye. And never underestimate the power of a good plant.

So as spring makes its debut, it’s the ideal time to whittle things back to the basics. Set aside the 5-10 things you actually wear and then gather everything else in a giant pile. Walk around your living room and look at anything you don’t ever use or enjoy looking at. Do you see yourself wearing anything in that pile in the next six months? Do you see yourself missing something from your space? If not, out it goes. Consign the good stuff and donate the rest. Then you can fill in any gaps with the aforementioned minimal basics. Trust me, you’ll feel ten times lighter and ten times happier every time you open your closet or walk through your house.



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images in order of appearance  fitgny / neustadt / pinterest / pintereststairway /apt34 archive / sfgirlbybay / shaina mote


I used to blog about fashion on this site a lot. I even used to post pictures of myself from time to time. But I’ve fallen victim to my natural state – that of a late 30’s mom with a toddler / entrepreneur working from home / live in California where no one gets dressed up uniform: aka lulu lemon. While I know athleisure is like, a thing now, I’ve always felt a little “still in my pjs” in a sweatshirt. But the following upscaled sweatshirt ideas are inspiring me to transform my lazy dressing into an actual outfit! PS these are all from Zara so they are crazy affordable (bonus).

next level sweatshirts on apartment 34

Idea number one: oversized sweatshirt, wide-leg trousers and heels. Not three things you might think to combine when browsing your own closet and yet, I love it. Obviously, this is a look that cannot be worn with bedhead. That’s a little too literal. When you mix the super casual with the dressy you have to keep the rest of your look nice and tight.

next level sweatshirts on apartment 34

A bit of a slimmer and cropped sweatshirt looks great tucked into a pair of high-waisted jeans. I probably won’t be rocking a sky-high heel at the playground, but a cute pair of sneakers (my current faves are linked right here), would work quite nicely. The oversized hoops are a nice addition too. A good accessory always elevates a look.

next level sweatshirts on apartment 34

A hoodie tucked into a pencil skirt? I’m into it. Though I do have to convince myself to wear a skirt again.

next level sweatshirts on apartment 34

Sweatshirt fully tucked into the high waisted jean. Yes, yes and yes. I actually saw this look on a girl walking down the street in San Francisco just yesterday and thought how cute it looked.

next level sweatshirts on apartment 34

An oversized sweatshirt in a bold hue paired a checked trouser creates a cool look. I’m not as big of a fan of the addition of the accessories bag, hat or — how do you even describe these sunglasses that even Beyonce was wearing at the Grammys? Do they have a name? I don’t get them. I cannot endorse any of those add-ons. I’m officially old.

next level sweatshirts on apartment 34

While I probably wouldn’t wear these looks to an office job, I would definitely feel sassy, a bit dressed up and like I’m actually back into this whole fashion thing by simply repurposing the sweatshirt collection already in my closet.

What say you? Are you into these sweatshirts as actual fashion looks?

For more outfit ideas, CLICK HERE.

images via zara 

Happy Monday friends. I hope you all had wonderful weekends. Like I mentioned last week, I’m doing my best to kick my wardrobe back in gear this fall, so I spend most of my Sunday evenings scrolling for the week’s outfit inspiration. This week, denim popped to the top of my search (surprise, surprise). But the season’s it jean feels like multiple flashes from fashion trends past – in a good way. I’m dating myself, but this vibe is a mix of Clueless meets My So Called Life and I kinda love it.

fall's It jean on apartment 34fall's It jean on apartment 34

After what feels like years spent in nothing but dark, skinny jeans, cropped, straight legged, and preferably high waisted feels fresh and new. The easy fit appeals to the tomboy in me (but be prepared – with no stretch, you have to find a pair that fits well!). And the light wash gives me all the 90’s retro feels. There are a lot of good footwear options for this look, but they’re particularly good for showing off the best fall ankle boot you can find.

fall's It jean on apartment 34fall's It jean on apartment 34fall's It jean on apartment 34fall's It jean on apartment 34

What do you think? Are you as into these jeans as I am?



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