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The M Dash

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One Suit, Four Ways: From Buttoned-up to Casual

April 29, 2017 | Filed in: Your Closet

This season, we present MM’s version of seersucker: a lightweight Italian fabric with beautiful drape, stretch, and elegance (think power pieces, not pastel bowties). We’ve named it ripple, and we love it so much that we made it into our new summer suit, a three-piece set (featuring the chic Cassatt vest, the Cobble Hill 2.0 skirt, and the Kelly top) whose components work just as well together as they do worn separately. Here, MM super-stylist Pauline tells us how to wear the pieces together and apart, formally and casually. 

Outfit 1: The Full Suit
The Cassatt Vest + The Kelly Top + The Cobble Hill 2.0 Skirt

Pauline in Ripple

Pauline wears the Cassatt vest with the matching Kelly top and the Cobble Hill 2.0 skirt, all in ripple.

“For me, comfort is key. The ripple fabric looks polished and crisp, but you still feel relaxed because it’s so stretchy—you can breathe and eat and lounge. It’s deceiving, because this suit appears sharply tailored: When you fasten the gold button, it defines the waist. The skirt is also tailored, but not revealing, as it’s high-waisted and fully lined, so it has a very smoothing effect. The overall look is very pulled-together and modest, even though it’s sleeveless—the Kelly top is the perfect under-layer. It’s the ideal summer suit, in my opinion.”

Outfit 2: The Faux Suit
The Lydia DressThe Cassatt Vest

Pauline wears the Lydia dress in galaxy blue with the Cassatt vest in ripple.

Pauline wears the Lydia dress in galaxy blue with the Cassatt vest in ripple.

“Personally, this is my favorite way to wear the Cassatt vest. The colors of these two pieces are so similar that it looks like you’re wearing a skirt suit, but the difference in fabrics make it a little more interesting. I love this combination of textures—the Lydia’s ponte fabric is very smooth and soft, and the Cassatt is seersucker, so you’re playing with the juxtaposition. It’s also easy—you throw on the dress, and the vest is like an accent piece. I’d wear this outfit to work and then take off the vest to go out after work. It’s also a great way to make the Lydia dress more modest if you feel it’s too curve-hugging for the office.”

Outfit 3: The Bold Look
The Cobble Hill 2.0 Skirt + The Rowling Top in Checker

Pauline wears the Cobble Hill skirt in ripple with the Rowling top in checker.

Pauline wears the Cobble Hill 2.0 skirt in ripple with the Rowling top in checker.

“I think it’s a strong choice to pair the ripple texture with a print—it’s a more creative, less safe look. It also shows the versatility of the skirt; when you wear it with something plain, its cut and texture become the centerpiece, but when you add something more eye-catching, it functions as a traditional navy skirt. Also, don’t be afraid to wear black with the navy ripple—the colors combine beautifully. Same goes for black shoes.”

Outfit 4: The Easy Pairing
The Kelly Top + The Carroll Skirt

Pauline wears the Kelly top with the Carroll skirt.

Pauline wears the Kelly top with the Carroll skirt.

“The great thing about the Kelly top is that it’s a layering piece that can be dressed down easily. Because it’s a lighter navy, it also works well with a lighter bottom. This skirt has a beautiful flare, so it makes a nice counterpoint to the top, which has a simple shape. I also love this mix of materials—the ripple has some texture, and the skirt is a very smooth, lined wool blend.”

Bonus Outfit: The Casual Friday Ensemble
The Cassatt Vest + The Coppola Top + The Foster Pant

Pauline wears the Cassatt vest in ripple over the Coppola top with the Foster pant in monsoon.

Pauline wears the Cassatt vest over the Coppola top in dewdrop with the Foster pant in monsoon.

“This is casual but also unexpected. I love the different lengths of the top and the vest, with the vest worn open—it highlights how it works as a layering piece. I also think it’s nice to pair the navy with dewdrop instead of white; the colors look fresh and more modern.”

Photos by Maria Karas.

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