A wedding in Maryland took me to Washington DC for the first time and it was spectacular! Easy to navigate, great food, and a cornucopia of some of the best museums I’ve had the pleasure to visit. But it was hot—oppressively hot! However, that did not stop me from getting to where I needed to go but it sure slowed me down. The upside of hot days are the warm evenings spent outside strolling and eating alfresco. If you are planning a visit don’t forget the sunscreen and a hat. Getting from one museum to another and then to a monument requires lots of walking in unshaded territory (you’ll thank me later). I always bring a cardigan with me as I never know when the air conditioning is going to kick-in. But as I said the hot, humid and unrelenting weather was oppressive so I never had the opportunity to cool down—no cardigan required.
Don’t miss the National Museum of American History where there is a permanent exhibit of gowns worn by the First Ladies. (Interesting little fact, there have been nine first ladies in their 20s.) Have a good look at the dresses. Some will surprise you. Notably, Eleanor Roosevelt’s dress was refreshingly elegant while Jackie O’s dress was, just as surprisingly, uneventful.
The heat did not seem to be a deterrent to the masses of woman working downtown. Lots of light weight, dresses worn with an array of flats. No cut-offs, sky-high heels, or leggings just cool, chic summer dresses.
Then it was off to New York where the weather was only slightly cooler during the days and some evenings did require a cardigan. But it was my hat and light cotton separates that saved me from collapsing in the heat. And in these temperatures always opt for a skirt or dress instead of shorts and pants—the breeze between your legs will be a welcomed one.
If you have a chance to get there this summer do not miss the Charles James Exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum. The gowns are Charles’s claim to fame and the exhibit offers a deft look at the deconstruction of some of his pieces.
The exhibit is split into two completely different rooms. One room houses the gowns while the other (way on the other side of the museum) holds the cocktail dresses and coats. If you are in the mood to see more in the way of fashion exhibits check out Exposed—A History of Lingerie at the Fashion Institute of Technology.
But no trip to New York is complete without a window shopping excursion to Bergdorf Goodman on 5th Avenue.
Eat well, laugh a lot and stay cool and chic!