A Shorts Story

The key to looking polished in shorts is making sure your ensemble has a beginning, middle, and end


Yes, it’s true: you can be urbane and even dressed up—in shorts. 

1. This blouse is sweet, but not saccharine, thanks to the glittery crochet Peter Pan collar and juicy hue. $44 @ Parc Boutique, 320 Hennepin Ave. E., Mpls., 612-353-4966, parcboutique.com

2. Break up the boxy shape with a long, vertical necklace. $20 @ Parc Boutique.

3. Soft, high-waisted, belted shorts call to mind a certain Ms. Hepburn. $64 @ Parc Boutique

4. A big tote will carry you from power lunch to happy hour. $90 @ Parc Boutique

5. A link bracelet is classic and polished. $22 @ Parc Boutique

6. Keep shoes neutral for gorgeous gams. Seychelles shoes, $100 @ Parc Boutique

Heavy Metal


Add metallics to your outfit to up the style quotient. Jewelry and sequins ratchet up dress-code status.

1. Yes, mixing metals is A-OK. Easy rule of thumb: Try keep them in relative proportion to each other. Necklace, $40 @ Target, target.com

2. A silky T-shirt with a cute print adds personality. $18 @ Target

3. Men’s watch styling, ladies’ watch sizing. Xhilaration watch, $10 @ Target

4. A woven purse feels summer-casual, but this one gets amped up with sparkles. Purse, $25 @ Target

5. These shorts add polish with pleats and a washed-suede faux finish. $64 @ Parc Boutique

6. Pull out the pink color in the shirt and keep the outfit bright with magenta sandals. $30 @ Gap, gap.com

Pattern Play


For a truly casual look that still radiates polish, mix patterns and bold colors.

1. Make a statement in hot pink. The drape of the T contrasts nicely with flat-front patterned shorts. Tee, $20; shorts, $50 @ Gap

2. This outfit can still carry cool accessories. Consider a tribal-style necklace or digital-print scarf. Necklace, $15 @ Target; scarf, $30 @ Gap

3. Love cobalt paired with hot pink. You’ll turn heads with mixed patterns. Purse, $17 @ Target

4. Color-blocked flat espadrilles: right on trend. $17 @ Target

5. Add a cluster of neutral bangles. DeVintage bangles, $38 @ Parc Boutique