Every summer needs good music and a few great reads to enjoy while sipping on an icy drink (perhaps even all at the same time). Luckily, we did the hard work and chose the best ones for you (and if you missed our first round-up, check out Summer Series: The Beginning.
Here’s our guide to get you into your summer groove:
The latest Passion Pit album. “Kindred” is the perfect summer sound for jamming and celebrating the good weather. If you’re new to them, we challenge you to listen to their past hit Sleepyhead while remaining still. They’re unique sound of keyboards, distinct vocals, drums, bass and synthesizers shouldn’t be missed. You can catch them live, too - the indie electro pop band is touring in the US during July (but tickets will probably sell out fast - so be quick.)
The soft strummings of Laura Marling are great for road tunes through gorgeous scenery. The British singer-songwriter's latest album, Short Movie, is an ode to the year she spent in California and as a result, it’s open and airy. It has her signature acoustic songs as well as more energetic jams. She’s also touring this summer, so catch the soulful songstress on tour in July.
Daily Rituals: How Artists Work by Mason Currey. This treasure trove of daily rituals from great minds is as entertaining as it is thought-provoking.
If you’ve ever wondered what you can do to break out of a creative rut or make more time for what you love to do, this book lets you glimpse the habits of some of the greatest artists and writers. You may find you’re more like Jane Austen, who rose early and played the piano in the morning, or that you prefer to sleep in like author David Foster Wallace, or that what you really need is a chocolate shake and seven cups of coffee like filmmaker David Lynch.
If you find yourself on the road during July, pack Alain de Botton’s The Art of Travel for a unique take on why we travel. This collection of essays ranging from the oddness of airports and museums, to the contents of hotel mini-bars will be perfect fodder for conversations with fellow travelers and friends.
Your summer essentials. For ladies, we have a variety of colors and sandals to mix up your summer footwear options. If you love flip flops, go with the Sheafe Leather Thong Sandals (available in mauve, black, apricot and two-toned styles) and for a sturdier sandal, great for longer walks, try our Sheafe Leather Fisherman Sandals in black, tan, gray and light brown.
Spruce up your outfit with one of our lightweight scarves, which can add a fresh pop of color to any look. Grab your Andover Leather Zip Wallet that’s the perfect size (just big enough to carry on it’s own, but small enough to throw into your bag) and you’re good to go.
For men, a baseball cap that shields you from the sun is essential - and we have plenty, like the Sound View Beach Baseball Cap in red, gray or green. If you’re going for a classic style, a black watch is always a good choice (but we have brown and two-toned ones as well). Pack your books, phone and beachwear into the Alton-Water Resistant 27-Liter Backpack (great for unpredictable July showers) that carries a lot without being bulky.
Refreshing summer drink. Summer weather is smoothie weather, and we like this healthy one with a tropical twist. It’s packed with fruit to get you going in the morning or cool off on these hot summer nights with a dessert that's actually good for you.
Tropical Summer Smoothie (makes 1)
½ frozen banana (chop up before freezing)
½ cup of fresh pineapple chunks
1 cup coconut water (replace ½ cup with water if you prefer it less sweet)
¼ cup Greek yogurt (unsweetened)
garnish with fresh mint
Combine all the ingredients in a blender. Whiz until smooth and add more water if you want it less thick. Bring in a portable water bottle to have on-the-go, or savor slowly while cooling down in the heat.