I spent last weekend hiding under a sunhat in Venice Beach, and have decided to share my beach bag items with you.
(Clockwise from top left):
-Beach towel and Sunscreen. Some people even use their beach towels as status symbols, picking up designs from Louis Vuitton or Hermes. I prefer to never pay more than $15 for mine, because they're inevitably going to be ruined. Check out this cute pink damask beach towel at Target. Although I prefer to use kids' sunscreen, this is because the sun here is extremely strong and even I, with my Native American skin, can get burned. Never use anything with an SPF of less than 15!
-Beach bag. This vintage African-print bag is meant for yoga, but it's large and sturdy enough to haul all my beach stuff around in, so I can at least look like a stylish bag lady. I got mine from Sew Trendy on Etsy. She will custom make orders for you, just mention this site and receive a discount!
-Reading and Writing Material. You never know when inspiration will strike! Which is why I always carry a notebook and pen with me. Yes, I know my blackberry has a memo pad but I prefer the old fashioned way. I also prefer if we refer to it as being "classic", like these Mead Composition Notebooks. I'm also working my way through the current issue of The Paris Review, and On Paradise Drive: How We Live Now (And Always Have) in the Future Tense, by David Brooks. Both great, interesting reads. Remember to always pack more reading material than you know you can get through.
-I-pod, Camera and Carrying Case. The sound of the ocean is nice, the screeching seagulls and the drunk hobos is not, so at a beach like Venice, an i-pod is a necessity. So is a camera for capturing those summer memories. Don't forget to charge both before you leave the house! I keep it all safe in this handy carrying case, also from Sew Trendy.
-Tunic. Something loose and breezy that looks nice over a bathing suit but that you also wouldn't be embarrassed to swing by the grocery store in on your way home, while you're picking up stuff for dinner. I got this coral tunic at Target three years ago for $15, and I still love it. I also long for this lust worthy version from Priorities, that is both beach and casual.
-Cotton blend scarf. For covering the back of your neck. I don't know about you, but mine ALWAYS gets burned! The cotton blend is essential for keeping you cool under the sun. I love the selection of ladderweave scarves at TopShop. A solid print is best for matching with all your bikinis, so if you go with a print make sure you have a specific suit in mind.
-Wide brim floppy hat. Perfect for keeping the sun off, I like to go with a wide brim straw hat. Not only does it protect your face, you can also pretend to be a gardener or at the Kentucky Derby. Be sure to avoid camping or "fisherman's" hats, as you will look like you're trying to imitate an Australian explorer or a minivan mom. Michael Stars makes a very cute and simple wide brim straw hat. The trick is to choose a light, neutral color to deflect rays and maximize versatility.
There you have it! Everything you need for a fabulous, relaxing day at the beach! Do you have anything to add?
Your Golden Girl,