Summer is about adventure and long, sun-soaked days spent with people you love. It’s a dream made real; time stretches out and slows, the living is easy. But, it’s also hot as hell. Overheating is a quick way to ruin your good time and a breezy outfit can easily be weighed down by a leather purse or a wool cap. ’Tis the season for linen, basket bags and straw hats.
Woven palm totes, rattan bags and wicker basket purses flood your social media feeds as summer inspires odes to Jane Birkin, the French goddess of the '70s who never went far without a picnic basket in warmer months. It's a light accessory and a wicker addition to any outfit makes for a classic look. They've even enjoyed a resurgence in 2018 resort and cruise collections from the likes of Prada and Gucci.
Finding one in Santa Fe isn’t the easiest task, however, but I did track down a few options after an afternoon of hunting. You’ll have an easier time locating a local option if you’re looking for a bigger basket that can hold everything you need for your next trip to the lake.
(2820 Cerrillos Road, 471-8539)
has a few large tote-sized, woven seagrass baskets ($45) with leather-covered handles. A towel, your favorite bottle of wine and a good book would fit right in there.
La Montañita Co-op (913 W Alameda St., 984-2852) has African market baskets, each of which is made by hand. The larger version ($32.99) comes in striped patterns and could hold everything you need to pick up to make delicious dinner and enjoy it al fresco, including ingredients fresh from the Farmers Market, candles and a picnic blanket.
Online, you'll of course find a larger array of basket purses in a variety of shapes, sizes, colors and price ranges. Given my choice, I'd go with Doen's Pheobe Basket ($38, shopdoen.com), which has a closeable top and a rounded shape. Although Doen's other equally cute hand baskets are sold out on their site, you can find them at Reformation (thereformation.com).
The company Orang Wanita—which means "woman person" in Indonesia's native language, Bhasa Indonesia—sources woven purses made by a group of people in the rainforest of Bali who use traditional techniques. Lined with beautiful textiles, they're really wearable works of art. The Duniabasic ($70-$100) is everything you want in a basket purse: It closes and can be worn on the shoulder or as a crossbody.
There are other ways to weave wood into your summer accessories besides carrying a picnic basket, since I know not all of you will be into that. Straw sun hats, however, are functional and cute. Sun protection is obviously a good plan since, according to the American Academy of Dermatology, one in five Americans develops skin cancer in their lifetime and sun damage can cause early skin aging. Snow, sand and water all increase the need for protection because they reflect the sun's harmful rays. With opposing opinions regarding sunblock and its toxicity—more on this in a future Bed Head—a sun hat is a great option.
Luckily, you'll have an easier time getting a sun hat in this town. They're available at most gardening establishments and grocery stores, but if you're looking for a more style oriented sun-blocker, pop into Maya (108 Galisteo St., 989-7590) for options including a golden straw hat embroidered with small red and yellow dots that look like confetti, or a black and white straw version with a colorful pom pom hat band ($55.50). Here you'll also find a classic, stiff brimmed straw hat with a big black bow ($45.50).
Sometime this fall, H&M is scheduled to open in a 26,000 square foot space in the Santa Fe Place Mall (4250 Cerrillos Road, 473-4253). While it's certainly a fast-fashion chain (meaning they produce a ton of low quality items using synthetic fibers with no concern for the environment or future), it will offer a place you can score an affordable sun hat ($17.99) and will give, like, one reason—maybe, maybe—to go to the mall.
So, hold all your stuff in a basket, put one on your head, tap your heels three times and remember to appreciate the summer; it will be gone before you know it.