Tuesday, March 22, 2022

Spring Has Sprung

Jumpsuit with Skirt Rococo Vine

Since I of course wear spring/summer clothes all year round in South Florida, I get excited when spring clothing lines comes out as I obviously am not buying from their winter lines. Perhaps my favorite brand is Frances Valentine, the last venture of Kate Spade before her death. Interestingly, I always loved Kate Spade handbags and shoes and accessories, but never felt that her clothing line ever captured her style. If you don't own her little book Style, you really should get it. I have probably read it a dozen times.

"A few lucky women have been born with style -- think Diana Vreeland and Jacqueline Onassis -- but for most of us, style is something that comes with time and experience. Above all, style begins with a sense of who you are and your self-confidence. Style comes from opening yourself to the world around you -- to books and movies, art, music, travel, and especially to other people. 

In this upbeat and engaging book, designer Kate Spade talks about the many people and experiences that have inspired her. For Kate, movies as varied as The Swimmer and The Red Balloon have influenced her vision of style, as have such places as Mexico (where she and her husband, Andy, vacation each year), Napa Valley, and her hometown of Kansas City. 

In the pages of Style, you'll find a large section devoted to the colors Kate most loves and suggestions for combining them. Accessories, which are the backbone of her wardrobe, are given full treatment here, including shoes, handbags, hats, gloves, and jewelry; and a portfolio of Kate's personal favorites from her own closet is showcased. Style in the office, evening style, even ideas for style when you travel and when you play are all featured here. The last section of Style focuses on maintaining your wardrobe, including tips on organizing your closet, caring for vintage clothes, and keeping your jewelry in good condition. 

Style, with 230 watercolor illustrations, is a wonderfully personal and friendly book intended for readers of all ages and style temperaments. If there's one rule Kate espouses, it's that true style comes when you follow your own rules. Moreover, as the writers William Strunk, Jr., and E. B. White once wrote, "To achieve style, begin by affecting none."

 I really feel that Frances Valentine clothes capture Kate's personal style (which I loved) better than the Kate Spade line does both now and in the past. The new spring collection is fabulous and I am sharing today my favorites. They are fun, colorful, timeless, and ageless. Click on the captions to link.

This stunning jumpsuit can be worn with or without the bow skirt. This would be wonderful for a cocktail party, wedding or a Kentucky Derby Party.

Jumpsuit with Skirt Rococo Vine

It also comes in this fabric and I love stripes.

Jumpsuit with Skirt in Sherbet Stripe

I have always loved comfortable clothes and have nothing in my wardrobe that is not. I find that choosing comfortable clothing is essential in hot climates like here. And for me, that means dresses which I wear 100% of the time. (I do not own a pair of jeans or shorts). I even have gardening smocks. This dress is the essence of a comfy silhouette and can be dressed up or down. It is also available in navy, white, green, and a vintage French print.

Easy Dress in Pink

This dress is so Jackie Kennedy. Also available in navy or pink. In beaded boucle, this dress is gorgeous.

Sleeveless Fringe Fish Dress in White

How fun is this blue hand-woven raffia tote?

Fuzzy Tote Natural and Blue

This pink raffia handbag is darling. I have a vintage Kate Spade handbag in black and white that is almost identical.

And this is my 20 year old vintage Kate Spade.


And a Chinoiserie Chic handbag - blue wicker with a bamboo handbag.

Also available in pink and green, these Magnolia Cloud Thong Sandals remind me a lot of Chanel's signature camellia. These are in Nappa leather are supposed to be very comfortable. 


  1. I've always loved Kate Spade's style. To me, she brought reinvigorated the more fun, lady like style that had been missing from fashion for some time. I still have her simple, original black handbag with her name on the side, and it's in great condition too. I remember that was a big purchase for me, as at the time, I was a member of the young, fabulous and broke! I wish now that I had also purchased the one in red. Since that time, I've acquired a few more of her bags and shoes. Thank you for this fun, stylish and pretty post, Beth.

    1. I have many vintage Kate Spade bags but none of the nylon ones. Those were the original.

  2. I love the Fuzzy Tote in natural and blue, but the Buzzy Basket Wicker is my favorite.

    1. I love wicker handbags - I wear them all the time.

  3. Love these new-to-me brand discoveries. Thank you for sharing.

  4. Didn't know that FV was a Kate Spade venture, but now that I've read it, it seems so obvious. Wonderful things.

  5. I think FV is more Kate Spade than Kate Spade.