Caftan-Curious

Susan B. of une femme d'un certain age wears a colorful summer caftan.

Every year when summer rolls around, I toy with the idea of a caftan. The thought of wearing something light and floaty and colorful and a little bit glamorous is appealing. But then I always chicken out.

So when Cindy (Cindy Hattersley Design) and Jennifer (A Well Styled Life ) asked if I’d like to join them for a Round Robin on caftans, I thought it might be just the motivation I needed to finally try a style I’ve been curious about.

Trina Turk Caftan | Earrings (similar) | Stacking Rings | Ring |
Bracelet (similar) | Pants | Sandals

Shopping in person is still tricky, so online I went. Right away, I realized that most full-length caftans would be far too long for me. So I narrowed my search to shorter styles. I found a lot of “swimsuit coverup” type caftans, but wanted something I could safely wear without a layer underneath.

And then I narrowed further for colors even remotely within my Spring palette. I’ll be honest, once I filtered down, there weren’t a lot of choices. At least from retailers that seemed reputable and could deliver the item in time to do this post.

Susan B. in a silk caftan from Trina Turk. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

“Another martini, Sweetie Darling, and this time the good gin. Not that other swill.”

So I ultimately ordered this one. It’s a lovely lightweight silk, from Trina Turk. The moment I slipped it on, I felt Absolutely Fabulous! So I set up a Zoom with Patsy and Edina for cocktails. 😉 🍸 (jk)

Whenever I’m trying a new style, I’ve learned to ask myself a few questions:

  • How will I wear it? Can it be worn with pieces already in my wardrobe?
  • When and Where would I wear it? Which leads to…
  • What’s the cost per wear? I’m willing to spend more for quality pieces that I’ll either wear often or that are timeless and will have longevity in my wardrobe.
  • Why am I considering this? Did I love it the minute I put it on? Does it fill a gap in my wardrobe?
Susan B. wears a colorful silk caftan and waits for her next martini. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

“Seriously, what does a girl have to do to get a drink around here??”

This caftan is such fun to wear and lightweight, in colors I love. I actually do feel rather fabulous in it! ✨ So even though it’s a piece I wouldn’t wear daily, it is a perennial style that won’t date, and would be great to have on hand for summer parties (when we start having those again), out for brunch or even as a travel piece for some warm weather destinations. And for Zoom cocktails in the meantime. 😆

Detail: Susan B. wears French Kande and Pomellato nudo rings, with a Trina Turk silk caftan. Info at une femme d'un certain age.

So a caftan may be my “thing” after all! The takeaway? If a style keeps calling out to you, try it! You may just surprise yourself!

I can’t wait to see what Cindy and Jennifer have found!

More Summer Caftans…

Thanks for reading!

Stay in touch.

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62 Comments

  1. LeeAnn
    June 16, 2020 / 5:01 am

    You look great! That style reminds me of Auntie Mame (Rosalind Russell–love her!), and I mean that as a compliment. I hope you eventually got that cocktail.

    • Susan Blakey
      Author
      June 16, 2020 / 6:17 am

      Yes!! I love Autie Mame and her joie de vivre. Rosalind Russell was the BEST Auntie M.

      • June 16, 2020 / 7:37 am

        MY FAVORITE MOVIE AS A CHILD!
        DOES THAT EXPLAIN A FEW THINGS??!!!

        • Susan Blakey
          Author
          June 16, 2020 / 8:32 am

          Oh yes, absolutely!

  2. Elle
    June 16, 2020 / 5:20 am

    Fun! I can see that piece looking awesome on a warm weather holiday.

    Pants look great under it. Are those the bone or white? I’m thinking of trying the bone, although I’m a cool winter in coloring.

    • Susan Blakey
      Author
      June 16, 2020 / 6:16 am

      Hi Elle, thanks! These are Bone.

  3. Kelly
    June 16, 2020 / 5:21 am

    When I think of caftans, I can’t get past Zsa Zsa Gabor on Green Acres reruns as a kid! I think you’ve embodied her personality in your cocktail comments, but you’d need to add “Dah-ling” at the end. The caftan you’ve chosen actually looks quite cute on you. The size isn’t overwhelming and the colors are perfect. You’re right, it would definitely work at a summer party.

    • Kelly
      June 16, 2020 / 5:29 am

      Oops, I see you did add “Dah-ling”! You were on it!

  4. June 16, 2020 / 5:21 am

    Love the colours in that top, Sue. It looks light and cool, and perfect for summer evenings.

  5. Susan D.
    June 16, 2020 / 5:31 am

    You look beautiful in this caftan!

  6. June 16, 2020 / 5:36 am

    Love the kaftan on you.

  7. Nancy
    June 16, 2020 / 5:43 am

    A store in Palm Springs, can’t remember the name, sells vintage caftans. Beautiful, good condition, clean, caftans. My daughter found the store and bought us both one, I love mine!

  8. Lisa B
    June 16, 2020 / 6:02 am

    You look wonderful! Being on the short side myself at 5’2″ i hear you regarding length. My favorite online store is VINCE but ordering from them requires paying even more for alterations. Wish they had some petite options. Just ordered their slip dress which has adjustable straps that will hopefully help somewhat with the length problem. If it’s knee length on model will be a midi on me.

  9. Lyn
    June 16, 2020 / 6:03 am

    This look is great on you! Love it!

  10. Gayle
    June 16, 2020 / 6:17 am

    I love this on you so much! The colors suit you to a tee.

  11. Anon
    June 16, 2020 / 6:19 am

    Edina, dahling, Edina. But you can call me Eddie. Is that Lacroix?

    That length of caftan is my fave, too. I’d blow away like a sail in anything too voluminous. Wind is a thing where I live.

    • Susan Blakey
      Author
      June 16, 2020 / 6:30 am

      Gah! I always do that. Fixed it, thanks!

  12. June 16, 2020 / 6:37 am

    You do look marvelous, darling. It is the glamour and comfort that appeals to me in a caftan. That said, i look huge in mine but a cocktail will help 😉
    Yours is amazing. I love it over pants.

  13. June 16, 2020 / 6:42 am

    You look great in the caftan! love the color on you! but silk is hot in the summer!

    • Susan Blakey
      Author
      June 16, 2020 / 6:47 am

      Thanks! This silk is really lightweight, and I think would be comfortable unless it’s really sweltering.

  14. June 16, 2020 / 6:52 am

    I guess when I think of caftan, I think of muu-muus, which are anathema to me. But I like tunics so I suppose if I identify a caftan as a tunic, I could live with it. It looks good. It looks really comfortable.

  15. tracy
    June 16, 2020 / 7:18 am

    Love it, I think it would be a great “double duty” travel piece to a warm weather destination to wear as you show it or as an elegant swim cover up! And it almost looks long enough to wear without pants under if you wanted

  16. Maria
    June 16, 2020 / 7:28 am

    Oh my goodness! Absolutely adorable!!!

  17. Karen
    June 16, 2020 / 7:32 am

    Fun to see a sassier side to you in the pic where you are looking over the top of your glasses.
    I bought a long caftan for our last cruise to S America. I think it’s a Trina Turk but at a lower price point than her designer line, silky but not silk (My messieur and I are on a little staycay for a couple of nights so I can’t look at the label). The bright colors look great on you!

  18. June 16, 2020 / 7:39 am

    STUNNING ON YOU!
    But this is a TUNIC NOT A CAFTAN!ABSOLUTELY, something YOU can WEAR…………..

    • Susan Blakey
      Author
      June 16, 2020 / 8:32 am

      You are the Queen of Caftans, so I’ll bow to your expertise. 😉 But all of the full-length styles I looked at would have left me with about a foot of fabric puddled at my feet.

  19. MW
    June 16, 2020 / 7:40 am

    Like your hair and your glasses. What brand are the sunglasses, please?

    • Susan Blakey
      Author
      June 16, 2020 / 7:41 am

      Thanks! They’re Missoni, a few years old.

  20. June 16, 2020 / 7:40 am

    Well you certainly do not look like Mrs. Roper! What a great choice. When I saw your Instagram (super clever by the way) I loved your choice. I absolutely adore you in that color! This was a learning experience for me as well. A typical caftan I cannot wear. Always love collaborating with you! Great fun!

  21. Melissa
    June 16, 2020 / 7:56 am

    You do look absolutely fabulous. And I love the pics. Thanks for the smile!

  22. Cynthia Dodd
    June 16, 2020 / 8:01 am

    Fabulous! You certainly narrowed down your choices to the perfect one. You have truly gotten your new “colors” down to exactly what makes you sparkle. Maybe you should do a series on how to transform your colors and your wardrobe.

  23. Joan
    June 16, 2020 / 8:43 am

    Love your sense of humor…even your facial expressions just like the British series with the gals.
    You look great with all the rings on your fingers.

    • Susan Blakey
      Author
      June 16, 2020 / 8:50 am

      You may not be overstating… 😉 And thank you!

      • June 16, 2020 / 9:03 am

        😉 I’ve certainly gone more in the direction you saw in me.

  24. Ann
    June 16, 2020 / 8:49 am

    Caftans aren’t my style, but this looks great on you. I do love your longer hair.

  25. DudMom
    June 16, 2020 / 8:53 am

    I love it! That color is amazing on you. I am officially obsessed with this look. My height/stature is like yours. My coloring is different (very dark brown hair/dark brown eyes/lightish medium neutral skin tone), and i think that color would be great on me and so many skin tones. This might be my favorite on you!

  26. citizen spot
    June 16, 2020 / 9:00 am

    Those colors and pattern are giving me a 1960’s Peter Max flashback, but in a good way. It looks good with the white bottoms. Definitely a bright breezy look for a summer garden party. Are the sleeve holes very low cut? It is hard to tell from the pictures here and on the link. The silk must be very comfortable.

    That said, I think they can see you now from the International Space Station. Just kidding! It looks fun!

    • Susan Blakey
      Author
      June 17, 2020 / 3:01 pm

      Hah! Peter Max was the first thing I thought of when I opened the box. Fortunately, the armholes are high enough not to flash anyone. 😉

  27. Elizabeth
    June 16, 2020 / 9:17 am

    Susan, you sparkle in these colours! Kudos to Red Leopard and do I ever wish they could give me an overhaul! I often visit (pre-pandemic) with my British family who live an hour outside London.
    Your caftan is very classy and looks so like “I’m on vacation”, even if it’s a staycation. I must admit that I prefer a closer fit, stretchy, sun repellent fabric (I burn easily), like the tunic/dresses from Cabana, worn with white capris, cropped pants or as a casual summer dress.
    Your hair style/length is very flattering.
    Could you provide the link to the tour of your backyard?

  28. Garden Goddess
    June 16, 2020 / 9:37 am

    The caftan looks great on you. I’ve been thinking I need one or two myself this summer; I never thought about getting a short one. Oh, and can I please get on that zoom call with you, Patsy and Edina? As you know they are Absolutely Fabulous!

  29. Rondi
    June 16, 2020 / 9:37 am

    You look great! But what’s really impressive is that you challenged yourself and tried a look you were always curious about. And the pictures are really cute! Good for you!

  30. Kathy
    June 16, 2020 / 10:23 am

    Your caftan is gorgeous! The color is stunning and so right for summer. Like you, I have not tried one, but just might change my mind after seeing this work for you.

  31. Jean B.
    June 16, 2020 / 10:35 am

    Fantastic look and I love your Eddie-and-Patsy references. Your color palette suits you to a T!

  32. Kay
    June 16, 2020 / 10:44 am

    The key is a fabric that will drape and flow. That way, the garment doesn’t look like a box as you move about.

  33. June 16, 2020 / 11:26 am

    You chickened out! That’s more of a tunic. But the color looks wonderful on you. So let’s give you a pass. I think I’m going to get a caftan. Never to wear in public. Of course, I don’t go out in public these days but something comfortable for the hot days of summer. The concept for the blog is a fun idea.

    • Susan Blakey
      Author
      June 16, 2020 / 11:28 am

      I’m open to a longer style, but every one I looked at would have left a foot of extra fabric puddled at my feet. I’d try a “midi” version (which would be “maxi” on me) if I found one in the right colors.

      • Rosie
        June 16, 2020 / 1:21 pm

        Chop the bottom off and style scrap as hair turban. Length is but a suggestion 😉

  34. Lynn Reed
    June 16, 2020 / 11:49 am

    Susan, the Trina Turk caftan is a winner. Of all three bloggers posts, I like this one the best. I think the shorter style is easier for the 5’4″ and under women to pull off. And your photos were adorable!.
    I follow all three bloggers who participated today I love that you are showing us looks that you normally do not find comfortable. I think it helps us all. Thank you Susan, Cindy and Jennifer! Well done!

  35. Marguerite Krenek
    June 16, 2020 / 12:35 pm

    Oh my dear this is a fabulous look on you! I adore a flowy top like this. I’ve looked around for color options that would suit my “summer” coloring, but nothing has been just right. I’ll join you as one of the Golden Girls !!

  36. June 16, 2020 / 12:38 pm

    Oh this kaftan is gorgeous. You made such a good choice. The style, the length, the colours, they are all perfect for you. And indeed you look glamorous, effortlessly glamorous. Was Mr D not quick on his feet to serve you cocktails? Tsss.
    You have inspired me to look for a kaftan. So nice for lounging about the house too.
    Greetje

  37. Rosie
    June 16, 2020 / 1:15 pm

    Okay. After all these years I’ve seen my favorite photo of you EVER. That first picture shooting such a look over your sunglasses? Frame that one Sweetie, it’s a treasure 🙂 and the outfit is adorable too. Lifelong caftan wearer here who recently did a closet tidy and finally got rid of a pink flamingo cotton floor length from India, Neiman Marcus circa 1979. Poor old thing was a tattered remnant of its former self. Caftans rock my Casbah.

  38. Lee Rosenthall
    June 16, 2020 / 2:24 pm

    Oh. My. Gosh. I cannot tell how much I LOVE that caftan and YOU in it! It’s exquisite, and you positively GLOW. I’m about to turn 60 and feel the need to branch out and try some new things. (If not now, when? Right???) I started with color ruanas and ponchos and have found a few that fit the bill as described in your list. Next up, a beautiful caftan. You’ve confirmed that it will be worth the search. (BTW, the ads are much more under control since I first commented them. Thank you for tweaking – it’s greatly appreciated!)

  39. Janet D.
    June 16, 2020 / 2:28 pm

    I must be in the minority in that I adore caftans. I wear them almost every summer evening at home because they’re comfortable & are more dressed-up than most of my at-home stuff. And I have a gorgeous B&W silk one I wear at home when we’re entertaining, especially on the deck or patio, or for an evening out (back when we did both those things) — I dress it up with high-heeled strappy sandals & big jewelry & it looks great (we live in a seaside resort area where this kind of “beach casual” look is common). I’m only 5’4″ & quite slim so it’s easy to be overwhelmed by too much fabric (hence the heels!), but I find that well-cut caftans are very flattering: I love “flowy” clothes that move with you, so sexy & yet deceptively sedate 🙂 I have to admit, though, that I’ve never considered wearing a short one as a tunic! Yours looks absolutely wonderful on you. Gives me pause for thought . . . .

  40. Stephanie Anderson
    June 16, 2020 / 4:44 pm

    My mother always changed into a caftan for evenings at home, and I’ve been doing the same since I was in my 30s! It’s great to get out of street clothes (especially that infernal bra!) but not look sloppy in pjs or a robe. I swan around, cocktail in hand, knowing that I look perfectly presentable should someone come to my house! Noa Noa ( a company based in Hilo, HI) makes wonderful caftans or long dresses (muu-muus, if you will, but not voluminous) in muted tapa prints. I have 3 of them and wear them all summer. Add a necklace and some bangles and I’m set for backyard entertaining!

  41. Rose
    June 17, 2020 / 4:48 am

    Susan—you look beautiful in this outfit. I am short like you and would never have thought it could be pulled off but you proved wrong. I agree with everyone that the color, length, style and shape all fit you perfectly, I’ve never purchased anything by Tina Turk and notice she has other styles of this caftan which may work for my winter coloring. May I ask what size you have on?

    • Susan Blakey
      Author
      June 17, 2020 / 6:11 am

      Thanks, Rose. I’m wearing the XS/S.

  42. June 17, 2020 / 5:49 am

    Very cute. It takes personal flair and confidence to wear a caftan. I don’t have it. Glad to see you in one.

  43. Tricia Dalton
    June 17, 2020 / 9:31 am

    I love this! You look beautiful as always. This has to be one of my favorite posts! So much fun, which we could all use right now.

  44. Renée
    June 18, 2020 / 6:32 am

    I was also caftan curious in this time of stay-at-home orders. I bought a beautiful, light-and-floaty full length Natori caftan and I love it! I will be floating around in it all summer long.

  45. June 19, 2020 / 6:01 pm

    First things first…the colors are spectacular on you and you wear it well. I might have to go shopping!

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