It’s summer! Time to fill your commemorative World Wildlife Fund cup with some iced rooibos chai and peruse the new collection from Carol’s Closet, your source for clothing that’s slightly hipper than Hillary Clinton’s but not quite as racy as Michelle Obama’s and, in any case, won’t make you look like your neighbor Elaine, who is really going through something since the divorce, poor thing.
The College-Visit Trouser
Slip on these flattering lightweight wool trousers for your visit to Oberlin with Nathan. Their luxurious palazzo-style drape says, “Of course we can afford the tuition,” while their sturdy construction gives you the fortitude to steer your youngest child away from the sex-positive anarchist commune and toward the music conservatory. In Sand Dollar, Gooseberry, or Eleanor Roosevelt beige.
The 8 p.m. Cardigan
Settle into this amply proportioned, reliably cozy wrap-style sweater for a nostalgic evening spent watching Jon Stewart clips from Obama’s first term and enjoying the leftover quiche from Nancy’s daughter’s baby shower, paired with a glass of that really nice twelve-dollar Pinot Grigio. Or tighten the belt and throw on a chunky necklace for a look that says, “The trial separation was myidea.” In Pottery, Marin Sunset, or Funky Persimmon.
The Bushwick Sheath Dress
When Katie’s budding art practice takes her to Brooklyn’s gritty frontier (while Ted and Carolyn never fail to remind you that their children are both thriving in their medical residencies), you’ll turn to this dress. Zip it on and let the figure-flattering seams support you while you endure an evening of performance art about menstruation from the twenty-seven-year-old who called you Mommy until last fall, when she began addressing you as Carol, a choice she still refuses to explain. In Dill, Place Mat, or Change-of-Life Fuchsia.
The I’m-Over-It Swimsuit
Slip into this unfussy tank suit and relish the deep satisfaction of knowing that you’ve finally made peace with your physical form. Pair with oversized sunglasses for a touch of glam, and chuckle knowingly at the skittish twentysomethings on the other side of the pool struggling to look relaxed while sucking in their stomachs and never laying their legs out flat. In Helen Mirren Red, Lauren Hutton Navy, or Jane Fonda Gold.
The Rise-to-the-Occasion Blazer
Maybe you’ve been telling your children about the pre-Roe era since they were in the sixth grade, but they’ve just started listening. Maybe you recently saw your neighbor desperately trying to scrape a Gary Johnson bumper sticker off her Camry. Whatever your motivation, the world needs you now. Slip on this sharply tailored jacket and start plotting your city-council campaign, send flowers to Maxine Waters, or write a check to the A.C.L.U. We know—you thought you were going to spend the next decade finally watching “Grey’s Anatomy” and making beaded earrings. Turns out a woman’s work is never done. In Jesus Christ, We’re Still Protesting This? Periwinkle, Heavy-Sigh Fuchsia, and Fuck-You Coral.