I have a tendency toward the hyperbolic, so when I say “everyone” is talking about something, I tend to mean that I heard a name mentioned somewhere (that I usually can’t remember) and then the same name was brought up by a friend a few days later. But this time, I think I’m being generally balanced when I say that everyone is talking about this outfit:
What you see here is Julie Pelipas, Fashion Director of Vogue Ukraine, in an outfit she wore during Couture Fashion Week. The outfit went street style viral, and I couldn’t scroll through my Instagram discover feed for longer than three seconds without seeing it appear over and over again. Everyone (yes, everyone) was reposting it — proclaiming to the world that this outfit was their summer ideal.
I, meanwhile, saved Julie Pelipas to my personal archive no less than five times, from a whole variety of angels. Every time I saw it, I was scared I would forget it.
Apparently, others ’round the internet were doing this, too.
But why? It’s just a tank and a pair of pants right? Hahaha, just kidding. That was a rhetorical style question. Let’s dissect this outfit like we’re in whatever class one takes to dissect animals (I never had to do that — blessings and regrets).
First of all, we have the swimsuit-like tank top.
It automatically says “summer,” but without the kitchy-kiddie-effect that can sometimes accompany style (blame our nostalgia for school’s-out-vacations) in June, July and August. It is polished, sporty and sexy. It is everything I think I am when I wear a matching all-black set to a Pilates class, until I see myself in the mirror and realize my leggings are on inside out and backwards.
We also have to acknowledge the accompanying earrings.
The tank’s back reveals a braless day, and the neckline seems to beg for its wearer to pull her hair back, still wet from the pool or shower, so that she can make room for her simple gold danglers, which hang from the lobes like two personal suns and warm up the shoulders below them.
Then, perhaps most importantly: the white paper bag trousers.
Be still my beating heart; oh what a dream come true it must be to find the perfect high waist stiff-and-or-starched white trousers that hold shape and stick out from your body far enough that they keep you cooler than any shorts could possibly dream of. Hers strike the balance of ideal proportion: baggy, but not sloppy, so that they make sense with such a body-conscious tank. Hers are also cropped, ever so slightly, evoking that thing male contestants do on The Bachelor whenever water is near, which makes me think: Water must be near! Which feels very summer.
AND THE BELT!
Well of course the belt is divine.
I mean, the shoes are great, too.
The key here is that she picked a brown leather pair that look like she’s had forever, like the kind you buy while on vacation in Italy “from some little street vendor” that you probably wandered upon while in a love-drunk haze, and it turned out your one-weekend-only significant other knew the cobbler’s brother, so he gave them to you for free so long as you promised to come visit.
Last but not least, the massive bag.
Oversized bags are officially back, but that’s not why this bag is the olive that tops off this ideal summer cocktail of an outfit. No. This one earns all its cool points for its mismatched color. All tans and whites and sands and browns then BOOM, out of nowhere: midnight. That said, if I were to recreate this outfit — and mark my words, I will — I’d likely keep it in the chestnut family for the sake of a monochromatic-ish moment.
That the bag is so large does add to its charm, though — again, not for the trend factor, but for all its possibilities. With a bag this large, its interior could be stuffed with bread and bottles of wine, and it’s carrier could be headed anywhere: a couture show, maybe, but also, perhaps, to some sort of picnic atop a sunset-cruising catamaran, the kind where dolphins swim nearby, then leap and hover in the air just long enough for you to capture them in portrait mode on your iPhone.
Yea. That’s the stuff.
If not this, what’s your ideal outfit of the summer?
Photos by Christian Vierig via Getty Images.