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  • jamesperse.com

At any one time, there are a few wardrobe items I am obsessed with finding. One of them is the perfect shirtdress. I saw my ideal probably six or seven years ago on a woman downtown: a narrow fit, a solid color, and minimal adornment—no epaulets or breast pockets to distract from the silhouette. Sadly, I have never seen its equal in a store. But a girl can hope.

The perfect shirtdress is made of natural fabric and is tailored enough to go to the office with a belt and heels, but can also be thrown on over a bathing suit. James Perse seems to come out with a version that meets this criteria every year (linen shirtdress, at left, $175 at jamesperse.com).