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Toteme raw denim shorts
Toteme raw denim shorts

This week: Charon discovered the summer counterpart of her winter uniform. Plus, the two people whose style is dragging us out of our fashion boredom.

We can't quite pinpoint when or why it began, but both of us feel that at the moment we miss the joy of dressing up. Is it a seasonal shift, with our outfits hidden beneath coats and scarves, leaving little motivation to put effort into what's underneath? Or perhaps it's the time constraints of being mothers to toddlers, leaving us with little opportunity for morning dress-up sessions. Could it be that we simply need more moments in front of the mirror, to play around with our clothes and styling them in a new way? Unsure if it's just us experiencing this, we're writing this partly for ourselves. However, if you're also grappling with fashion fatigue, we'd like to introduce you to two individuals who inspire us to embrace full-on morning fashion extravagance.

 ALAÏA La Toque hat, TOTEME cape (on sale), GUCCI horsebit detail mules, and ALAÏA Le Teckel small in red

1. Jalil Johnson, the creator of Consider Yourself Cultured Substack, resides in New York and defines his style as "ladies-who-lunch garb." Inspired primarily by Jackie O, he gravitates towards kitten heels, boxy jackets, and hats reminiscent of her iconic looks. Johnson's accessory game is on another level, featuring a tiara from the 1920s that he casually wears for strolls in Central Park or glamorous nights out. He frequently adorns his knits with brooches, cinches his ensembles with small waist belts, and accessorizes with pearl necklaces and fabulous hats. A true maximalist, but in the chicest way possible.

2. Model Lara McGrath, also known as The Goat Dancer, gained recognition when she self-shot and styled herself in Alaïa for Issueissue Magazine. Her unconventional poses against backdrops like brick walls, trees, and trash cans evoke the raw humor of Juergen Teller's photography. McGrath challenges traditional garment styling by draping pieces in unexpected ways, often placing them in front of her body or over her head. We’re also obsessed with her @thegoatdancerfittingrooms account, where she takes mirror selfies in the fitting rooms of random malls or high street stores, styling and draping to transform mundane clothes into couture-worthy looks.

 HODA KOVA Sheep fleece ‘Fur coat’, The Ceilings CELINE 80’s leather dress, MAISON MARGIELA Distressed denim shorts, and FERRAGAMO 85mm patent leather boots

Summer staple to invest in now

Summer dressing as a winter person, the sequel. As discussed in our first newsletter of the year, navigating summer attire can be a bit tricky for those who feel a strong affinity for the layering and darker colors of winter fashion. However, since officially relocating to South Africa last month, I (Charon) believe I'm beginning to master dressing for a warmer climate. This newfound ease is largely thanks to the Toteme raw denim shorts. I reached for them on the very first day of my arrival in [city], and I've practically lived in them ever since. The unwashed denim seamlessly complements my preference for darker autumn/winter tones, and the fit is just right—neither too tight nor too loose.

TOTEME Raw denim shorts

These shorts remind me in a way of the Levi’s cutoffs that accompanied me throughout my twenties but are now gathering dust. Equally versatile, yet chicer and more suitable for both business meetings and the playground. My go-to look with the shorts is actually a Toteme uniform: paired with the Toteme grey t-shirt that we've discussed a few times already (the Wardrobe NYC t-shirt is also a great option). However, sometimes more is more and dressing up is the only way to go. When paired with a La Collection blazer that Stephanie thankfully influenced me to buy, a slim vintage Ferragamo belt, and a vintage Ferragamo Hobo Bag (love this smaller white version too), which used to be the cornerstones of my winter wardrobe, this ensemble transforms into a chic night out look. Combined with the Toteme shorts, a good pair of ballerinas (my beloved white Tabi worn here) or sandals and sunglasses (mine are The Row x Oliver Peoples, similar styles available here or here), the ensemble easily transitions into a sophisticated spring/summer look. For rainy days, I've already devised the perfect country spring look: the Tabi rain boots paired with a simple tank or long-sleeve top would breathe new life into these Toteme shorts.

La Collection Dark grey Gianna blazer, similar here, here and here, vintage Ferragamo belt (try this silver chain belt or this and this slim belt could work too), TOTEME Raw denim shorts on sale (also very good in mid blue denim), vintage FERRAGAMO Hobo bag (see also here) and The Row x Oliver Peoples rectangular glasses (similar here or here) and SOPHIE BUHAI gold hinged hoops 

Circling back to how we started this newsletter. Now that I've laid the foundation for the principles of summer dressing, it’s time to start practicing what we preach and incorporate more fun into my looks. I guess it’s finally time to bite the bullet and order those Wellipets.

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