Last year my family and I restarted the tradition of spending time at the Connecticut shore. This was a place that I grew up going to each summer along with generations of family members before me (you can read about my childhood memories and why it’s so special here). Prior to last year, since I moved to Los Angeles, I had only been back there once in 2013. After our last trip we realized how much we missed the beach, so my parents recently purchased a beach house on the water. This summer, I’ll be heading to Westbrook and spending the rest of the season in Long Island Sound.
Usually, I shop for summertime essentials starting in the spring and slowly pick up a few things here and there. Due to Covid, I got a late start since I wasn’t sure what was going on (they just purchased the cottage this month). As I made my list, I leaned more towards casual items since I’m not positive what we’ll be doing (and what will be opened). Here are 20 items that I’m purchasing (or have already purchased) for my summer at the shore.
1. Bluetooth speaker. How cool is this? You can listen to music in the pool or ocean and it lights up the water around you. (Here’s my favorite playlist that will be blaring out of it all summer long.)
2. Band.do beach bag. Every summer I have a tradition of buying a new beach bag. Last year it was a tan straw one with pom-poms. This year I opted for a bright yellow canvas tote that says “Make Time For Sunshine”.
3. Trina Turk coverup. This was the first thing I bought this season. I love the vibrant beachy floral print and it’s perfect for throwing on when I get out of the ocean.
4. Show Me Your Mumu bell-bottoms. I’ve always loved the 1960s and 1970s bohemian style and these striped bell-bottoms perfectly capture that.
5. Sterling Forever necklace. As I was curating my wishlist, I noticed that I was gravitating towards items with yellow or gold in them. When it came time to buy some summery jewelry, this sun, and moon-faced necklace was a perfect find.
6. Tie-dye kit. East Coast summers bring plenty of rainy days, so having something to do indoors is essential. With tie-dye being everywhere this year I bought a kit so I can create my own. (I also purchased a white hoodie and a pack of tees from Target.)
7. Ryan Porter “IDGAF” bracelet. This handmade bracelet gives off the ideal beach relaxation message. It also came with cute stickers and a card to decorate.
8. Dolls Kill “camp crush” hair clips. These colorful barrettes remind me of the friendship bracelets I made (and wore) as a child.
9. Blank NYC vintage highrise shorts. A pair of sun-bleached denim cutoffs are a summertime must-have, but the white stars add a unique accent.
10. Sterling Forever ring. This 14K gold ring in the shape of an ocean wave perfectly represents where I’m spending the summer.
11. Gucci pool slides. I went back and forth between these in pink or black but ultimately decided on the black since they’ll go with more things.
13. Dolce Vita sandals. To say I have an obsession with anything holographic would be an understatement. These strappy sandals are super-comfortable, which will come in handy when I’m walking for long periods of time.
14. Dolls Kill hat. A denim bucket hat is a perfect throwback to the ‘90s era while protecting me from the sun.
15. ASOS sundress. This pastel pink and white tie-dye sundress can be thrown on over a swimsuit or dressed up to wear out at night.
18. Ray-Bans. You can never go wrong with a classic pair Wayfarers.
19. Ban.do sunglass case. A padded case from Ban.do to prevent my sunnies from getting scratched in the sand.
20. Rebecca Minkoff purse. This sunny yellow purse will brighten up any outfit.
Traveling to a cottage or Airbnb this summer? Check out my comprehensive beach house shopping guide for tips and everything you could possibly need to have a safe and comfortable stay.
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