As is often the case in fashion history, the nautical look was first made fashionable by none other than the chicest style sailor of all, Coco Chanel. Sporting the classic striped Breton marinière, Chanel made a splash on the French Riviera. The formula for nautical style is as simple as it is perfect: navy, white, and a stripe. The added bonus is that it works for everyone – landlubbers and city sailors alike. Influencing everything from apparel, accessories and color, the new nautical for this season is nostalgic refreshed with a modern twist. It’s all about updating with clean shapes and unexpected details. The current style craze for stripes plays perfectly into nautical style, with classic stripe prints getting a remake with pops of color and unexpected changes in direction. Uneven hems and wraparound layers, lend an urban dimension to nautical ensembles that help to keep things authentic and edgy, without the risk of veering overboard into costume territory. Nautical-themed prints are always popular in the spring and summer because they incorporate breathable fabrics, like cotton and seersucker, which help to beat the heat. For a simple look, try a crisp, striped top with jeans and a comfortable loafer, leather sandal or espadrille. You can also add simple nautical touches to your other cotton ensembles with rope accessories, ocean-inspired jewelry or striped wedges. The classic nautical color combination consists of navy, white and red, but other shades like cobalt and aqua can really add a pop of vivid blue that will make an updated splash. Incorporating tougher elements like red leather pants into your ensemble is a great way to add modernity and edge to a nautical outfit. Designers are giving old, salty standbys like windbreakers and culottes a fresh off the new boat look by restyling them in lightweight leathers. “On a day when the wind is perfect, the sail just needs to open and the world is full of beauty, today is such a day.” Rumi
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