5.7.19 2

On Romanticizing the Past and the Best Warm-Weather LBD

What’s up, team?! Long time, no chat. I’ve had a busy week and a half—lots of fun social plans after work and then an amazing trip to Charlottesville to spend some quality time with my college best friends, Lauren and Molly. We met through our sorority, lived together third and fourth year, and have stayed close ever since. Lauren is engaged, and asked me and Molly to be Co-Maids of Honor in her wedding this weekend, so that was super exciting. I’m excited to be planning her bachelorette in Nashville for this summer and even more excited to stand up there with one of my best friends on her special day come November!


Last week, I met my old roommate for dinner in our old Arlington neighborhood. I had the best time catching up with her, and whenever I walk the streets near our Courthouse apartments, I always look back so fondly at our time there. When we first moved in together, we were 24 and still had the majority of our college furniture (s/o to the octopus lamp), got by on small salaries, lived a fairly hangover free life (with the exception of my 25th birthday when I drank my weight in Clicquot), and were really just figuring things out in adulthood together. I know my life is still pretty unencumbered now, but things just seemed so much simpler back then and it seemed like I had so much more time. Time to make mistakes and figure things out before the weight of adulthood and the ~future really sank in.

When I started thinking about those years—2013 and the four years that followed—and realized I was describing them as a simpler time like I’m some 80-year-old, I came to the realization I’ve started to romanticize that time in my life. When I think back on my early 20s now, the details have started to fade, the rough edges have become smoother. I don’t remember the mundane, but the highlights stand out. I don’t remember all of the bad, stressful, anxious, or sad times, but the ones I do remember don’t have that much power over me anymore.

I’ve been thinking a lot about how grateful I am to have had such a vibrant, messy, fun, and memorable 20-something decade so far. And I’ve been thinking a lot about how I really liked who I was back in those Arlington days, but even more-so, really liked who I was becoming; who I am still working on becoming now. I’m sure in five years or so, I’ll look back on this time in my life, the fun, bachelorette life in Dupont Circle, in the same way—a romanticization that smooths out the rough edges, and a whole lot of gratitude for the memories and good times.

Maybe it’s because it’s graduation season, or maybe it’s because I’m a little nostalgic for those early years in a one bedroom/sunroom apartment that hadn’t been updated since the early 90s, but I can’t help but replaying Andy Bernard’s famous Office quote in my mind, “I wish there was a way to know you were in the good old days before you actually left them.”

emerson fry cut out mod dress

Last summer, I finally bought this Emerson Fry Cut Out Mod Dress after admiring it for years. (I first added it to my Pinterest boards back in 2014!) It’s the perfect LBD for drinks with the girls, a cocktail hour, birthday party, or even a rehearsal dinner.

The quality is stellar, and Emerson Fry has easy and quick returns if you want to try out multiple sizes. If you’re in between sizes, I’d recommend sizing down because I’ve found their clothes tend to run a bit large. I’m wearing a medium for size reference.

It also comes in white and they typically release it in a new color or so a season—like this chambray, which is available now, or this Valencia color, for which the pre-order is closed, but you can still sign up to be notified when it’s available for sale. If this fabulous dress is not available in your preferred size/color combo right now, definitely sign up to be notified when the item is back in stock. I’ve used their notifier before, and it works great! I’ve got my eye on the top version of this dress—hoping they re-stock it soon!

emerson fry cut out mod dress

Emerson Fry Cut Out Mod Dress
Round Straw Bag—similar here
Baublebar Mya Drops
J Crew Factory Patent Sandals—similar here and here


Photos by Kimberly Graydon

emerson fry cut out mod dress

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  1. ohhh this post speaks to me! i lived in the same apt for the first four years out of college with two of my best friends on the east side of manhattan, with three of our close friends 6 blocks down, two more 30 blocks up, etc. it was the BEST and i definitely romanticize that time in my life, always saying i wish i could go back to 23. i do think also as you get older life feels a bit more real and people’s paths diverge. i was really lucky to have most of my college friends move to NY too, so those early years sort of felt like college! with jobs! haha. there are great things that come with this stage though — more disposable income, etc. but also tough ones — my best friend moved to london two months ago and that’s been hard! loved loved loved this post and that dress looks fab on you!!!

    Published 5.8.19
    • Katie wrote:

      As I mentioned via text, thank you so much for your kind words about this post — I am so glad it resonates with you too. I think you hit the nail on the head that people’s paths diverge — I think that is really want I miss, everyone being on the same page. But you’re so right that there are so many great things that come with this stage, too.

      Published 5.24.19