After the success last week of Debbi O’Shea’s Polyvore posting on how to update your little black dress for spring, we decided to ask her to do the same for white. White is a staple in everyone’s spring/summer wardrobe, and with all the season’s socializing, we love learning ways to reaccessorize our basics!—Ed.

I adore white dresses in the summer, but a “LWD” will inevitably have a shorter shelf life than a “LBD.” For that reason, I looked to find one that was both on trend and feminine, and that could be worn for a season or two without breaking the bank.  I lucked out and found a white lace BCBGMaxAzria sheath dress for $248.  It is the linchpin of all three looks.

Pretty Woman: Bridgehampton Polo
We know not everyone goes to polo matches; consider this as inspiration for any upscale daytime summer affair.  love letting the dress speak for itself here.  All it needs for finishing is perfect coral pops, like the Pucci banded hat for shade, the Rebecca Minkoff  Diamond straw tote, and J.Crew  Marci patent wedges for half-time divot stomping. Oh, and don’t forget the sunscreen.

Rooftop Cocktail Party

Wouldn’t it be lovely to be in New York on a beautiful night, sipping cocktails with friends on a garden terrace in the sky? Even warm days cool down,  so pairing the same LWD with this black Antonio Marras three-quarter-sleeve black cardigan would be smart and look relaxed and stylish. The cobalt and black Pucci Python clutch is a seasonless beauty that would be equally fetching with a black dinner suit in the winter.  The splurge is the Manolo Blahnik Vitribium black and white linen scalloped pumps . . . sometimes a girl just has to do it.

Casual Mondays at the Office

As the mercury rises during the warmer months, dress codes may relax a little or a lot, depending on the nature of the business.  Either way, the goal should be to appear cool and crisp (aka “never let them see you sweat”). Pairing a navy Ralph Lauren blazer with the LWD looks chic but appropriate.  Adding the scarf, cheap and cheerful linen Nine West bagand lemon patent Alice and Olivia belt keeps the look  fresh, not stodgy.

Colorful accessories are the easiest way to update your wardrobe this season, and they are available at price points that will suit any budget.  Your LBDs and LWDs await. Have fun!

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  • DivaDebbi May 4, 2012 at 3:38 pm

    My pleasure Dr. Pat!
    They are so much fun for me to do. It would be a joy to shop with you… Richards in Greenwich is just a blip away.
    I have a lovely private office. Just say the word!

  • Patricia Yarberry Allen, M.D. May 4, 2012 at 12:25 pm


    Thanks for the great white dress you found for us! I love summer white dresses but their shelf life is so short…

    And the accessories, once again, make this one basic dress, into three fabulous outfits.

    We are so lucky that you write for us, Debbi. Now, I just need to go shopping with you.

    Dr. Pat