By Nancy McKeon
AS SUMMER HITS its muggy stride, re-opened pools reign supreme, whether their overlord is your local municipality or the fitness center or a generous neighbor. Even strolling past a pool seems to make one feel cooler—ah, the scent of chlorine wafting through the air!
Add, then, signifiers of summer: the beach towels, the pool floats, outdoor lights that work just as well in a summery living room. We’re calling it pool candy, but the color and sweetness extend well beyond that watery realm. Dive right in!
LEFT: Philadelphia-based graphic artist Kendra Dandy applies “Black girl magic” to her Bouffants line of wares. This cheeky cheetah pool float is a collaboration with Anthropologie, where the summer staple is $29.95. The same cheetah also peers up through tropical foliage on a Kendra Dandy dish towel, perfect for anyone’s summer kitchen ($20).
RIGHT: The Otteroo neck float keeps babies upright in bath or pool. And then they just start to flap their little arms and legs, automatically it would seem (at least 7-month-old grand-niece Charlotte did). The “Lumi” is for babies 8+ weeks, 9 to 35 pounds, and costs $24.50. The “Mini” is for 2+ weeks, 6 to 18 pounds, $17.50. Both at shop.otteroo.com. (While you’re there, take a moment to read the Otteroo team’s caution about buying an inexpensive knockoff. I mean, it’s your baby!)
LEFT: Talk about pool candy! The Bougainvillea wrap-front one-piece suit from Tommy Bahama is $168 at Bloomingdale’s.
RIGHT: But if you simply must cover up your suit, you might consider this Ted Baker London cinchable fluttering confection. It’s $150, also at Bloomingdale’s.
The Rio Outdoor LED Lamp is aimed at the pool deck, but I say that, at almost 5 feet tall, it can go anywhere it wants! By day the polyethylene “sculpture” is white; by night it glows. And yes, of course it can change color—and flicker if you want it to. Each tall Rio is $350.55 from Frontgate. The catalogue also features the LED cube seats/tables seen here.
My experience of dogs is that they want to be either in the water or nowhere near it. But maybe your Sadie Lou just wants to chill with the kids in the pool. If so, this Dog Pool Float and Lounger may fill the bill. Available in several sizes and colors, the floats are on sale at Frontgate, $89.10 to $143.10, depending on size. Frontgate also has a dog-bone-shape float, $134.10 to $161.10, again depending on size.
LEFT: The Layla Lion beach towel will stand out from the crowd. It’s cotton and $54 at Anthropologie.
RIGHT: Even more exotic is the Ibiza Bohemia beach towel from Funboy. It’s cotton and $49 at the Funboy site.
Light up the night with these clever 15-inch-tall polyresin pineapple outdoor LED table lamps. Available in fruit-bowl colors of green, yellow and gold, they are $79.50 each from the Grandin Road catalogue.
LEFT: What’s a pool without a resin iguana spitting water into it? (No response required.) This plucky 16-inch-long fellow is from Bay Isle Home and is $86.99 at Wayfair.
RIGHT: Alternatively, you might prefer this Grecian triple-tier floating spray fountain, various styles from about $45 to $65 through Amazon.
A trio of coverups from Bloomingdale’s.
LEFT: When you don’t really, really want to cover up, there’s this ombré frayed-edge cotton pareo from Echo. And if you start feeling shy, you can knot it over a shoulder. It’s on sale for $51.75.
CENTER: Here’s a beach coverup that can head out to dinner. The Karen Kane midi-dress is tie-dye on rayon and spandex, on sale for $104.25.
RIGHT: The Seraphina Heart-Print Tunic of semi-sheer cotton from Roller Rabbit can range far from the pool (think jeans and sandals and in the city). Note the tassel ties and the tassels at the hem. Cute! It’s $148.
TOP LEFT: Funboy’s Gold Swan Pool Float is back, with a brighter metallic finish. It’s $79.
BOTTOM LEFT: This Butterfly Drinks Float is sold out on the Funboy site but on sale at Frontgate, for $44.10.
RIGHT: Funboy’s Mushroom Sprinklers are weighted (with water) at the bottom so they bounce back as the kids horse around. Over 5 feet tall, they’re $59 each, with a $28 discount if you buy three. And who could resist? (Okay, maybe someone who would prefer an adorable 28-inch-diameter Watermelon Sprinkler for the backyard! Just attach it to a hose, plop it down on the ground, and . . . run! It’s $29.99 at Food52.)
MyLittleBird often includes links to products we write about. Our editorial choices are made independently; nonetheless, a purchase made through such a link can sometimes result in MyLittleBird receiving a commission on the sale. We are also an Amazon Associate.