Sitting Preppy

Maybe I’m in recession denial. Or, maybe living in the hipster capital of the country has finally left me longing to stand out among an ocean of artsy types layering, sewing and mismatching our way to distinction. Whatever the impetus, I’m having a preppy phase.

This is aspirational dressing. This is full blow sailor-stripes-Gweneth-Paltrow-on-holiday-with-Bylthe-Danner-and-Apple obsession.

I want to crawl into my J. Crew catalog and live there among the freckles and white teeth. I want to buy matching Land’s End boat-neck shirts with my mom. I want to monogram things.

It’s possible that my oldest friend, Heather, moving out of NYC and into a gorgeous place close to our Pennsylvania hometown while—despite a pipe above my crumbling Brooklyn kitchen leaking—my rent is being raised, has something to do with it. Perhaps I’m compensating for lack of order, leisure and collared shirts in my life.

Following such logic (or illogic), I have dipped into my savings to take a long Presidents’ Day weekend with two girlfriends. We are going to Tulum, along the Mayan Riviera. Mexico is not too far and not too expensive. We will snorkel and explore ruins and lounge.

I am in need of Riviera shoes. They must ooze prep.

Luckily I saved a Macy’s gift card from Christmas for just such an emergency. And sweet, thoughtful Macy’s has already begun stocking summer shoes. They are a dainty take on the boat shoe, the Tabitha Moc from Michael Kors. Macy’s doesn’t seem to have these online but red and black patent versions are available here.

Blythe Danner probably has a pair. Mr. and Mrs. Howl would’ve worn these on Gilligan’s Island, classic and upper crust. Speaking of crust, I glance up at the widening yellow stain forming, scab-like, around the offending pipe in my kitchen. I pack my shoes and a cotton cardigan for over-the-shoulder draping. To the stain I say, adios, Lovey.

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