Summer’s Swan Song & the Ultimate Layering Piece

Black Lace Dress: Free People | Short Necklace: Me & Ro (circa 2005) | Long Wooden Crucifix: Christian Bible Store | Leather Bracelets: Brandy Melville, Target | Handbag: Stella McCartney (Saks) | Sandals: Isabel Marant (Consignment)
Black Lace Dress: Free People | Short Necklace: Me & Ro (circa 2005) | Long Wooden Crucifix: Christian Bible Store | Leather Bracelets: Brandy Melville, Target | Handbag: Stella McCartney (Saks) | Sandals: Isabel Marant (Consignment)
Black Lace Dress: Free People | Short Necklace: Me & Ro (circa 2005) | Long Wooden Crucifix: Christian Bible Store | Leather Bracelets: Brandy Melville, Target | Handbag: Stella McCartney (Saks) | Sandals: Isabel Marant (Consignment)

It’s the end of summer, and New York City is bordering on hysteria. Labor Day signifies the end of Summer Fridays and a seasonal slope into what’s shaping up to be the worst winter since… last winter. I’ve already air vacuumed half of my summer wardrobe to free up closet space for coats and jackets, but this Free People dress is one of the rare items I wear year-round. (I took these photos last week, which explains the old manicure and pedicure.)

The dress is a sack shape with a handkerchief hem, which is swooshy when you walk. (These are the little things that make clothes fun to wear.) It’s a roomy silhouette, so I normally cinch this dress with a thin belt. But it’s summer, so I kept things airy.

I alluded to the coming autumn with a perennial pairing of lace and leather, including cognac-colored leather accents: necklace, bracelets and sandals.

Top to Bottom: Bracelets: Target, Brandy Melville | Sandals: Isabel Marant (Consignment)
Top to Bottom: Bracelets: Target, Brandy Melville | Sandals: Isabel Marant (Consignment)

While this dress is perfect for summer, it has launched itself into MVP territory thanks to its versatility in cooler weather. Here’s how I wore it on a chilly day in New Orleans last October:

Dress: Free People | Leather Jacket: Diane von Furstenburg (Consignment) | Scarf: Vintage (Found in Paris) | Opaque Maroon Tights: Target | Ballerina Flats: Jasper & Jeera (Anthropologie)
Dress: Free People | Leather Jacket: Diane von Furstenburg (Consignment) | Scarf: Vintage (Found in Paris) | Opaque Maroon Tights: Target | Ballerina Flats: Jasper & Jeera (Anthropologie)

This fall, I’ll be remixing this dress with tall leather boots, floppy hats and maaaybe a purple velvet coat. You’ll be able to keep tabs on this dress’ multiple personalities by checking the Seasonal Shifts category.