In honor of the federal holiday that honors America's independence from the Brits (even though it's really more of an homage to grilled ground meats and binge-drinking, but that's cool, too!), we're paying homage to the most all-American of the American designers. Ralph Lauren isn't so much a fashion designer as a brilliant appropriator of classic sportswear, from rugged denim to prairie dresses to cowboy hats to turquoise and sterling-silver jewels...to sailor shirts.
The Piece: Ralph by Ralph Lauren linen French navy uniform-inspired blouse, circa early-1980s; available now for $100
The Inspiration: (from left) Ralph Lauren campaigns, 1982-1985; Brigitte Bardot; Jackie O.; Marilyn Monroe; Audrey Hepburn; and Elle Italia and Lui July 2014 editorials
The Way to Wear It Now: Let the linen crinkle as much and as naturally as Ralph originally intended, and take this to the beach for a knowing nod to the retro Cape Cod prepster. Tattered vintage Levi's cutoffs and a bare face with glowy cheeks and a Popsicle-stained mouth complete the look. Try By Terry Cheek to Cheek Watercolor Blush in Cherry Cruise ($48), along with Lipstick Queen's aptly named Hello Sailor berry-tinted lipstick ($25).