Row Your Boat

central park row boats, kate spade garden leaves dress, red valentino bow sandals, kate spade wicker snail bag

Rather than settling for the most convenient locations for photos (which is typically how I roll — near my apartment, in-between meetings, etc.), I’ve been trying to branch out lately and capture some of New York City’s most scenic backdrops. Gotta get them in while I can, right?!

For a change of pace, Lydia and I met outside of Central Park after work last week to shoot my outfit. I’ve never shot photos on Bow Bridge in the park (one of the prettiest bridges!) so we set off into the park to scope it out. As soon as we got to the lake and saw the bridge, all of our photo dreams were kind of smashed. At first, we thought there was a movie being filmed (A NY’ers first thought, always.) because there was a large tarp over a section of the bridge. But it turns out that they’re resurfacing the bridge and it’s completely closed. Womp, womp!

While we were standing at the lake watching row-boaters go by, I kind of had this wild idea for us to rent a row boat and take photos in there instead of trying to find a different bridge! I mean, my outfit goes pretty well with the backdrop, don’t you think? But that actually wasn’t planned at all.ย Neither Lydia nor I had ever rented row boats from the Boathouse so it was the perfect excuse to check an item off of our bucket lists while we got our work done. But man oh man, it was an adventure. (There’s an outtake below and plenty more where that came from! 😂)

central park boathouse

I actually wore this outfit a few weeks ago for a quick trip to Atlanta to visit the Southern Proper HQ with Carly! This dress is my new favorite piece in my closet. Iย ordered it online without ever having seen it or tried in on in person and it fits like a GLOVE. (Have you seen Kate Spade’s new “True Fit” service? Basically you enter in some basic sizing information custom to your body and the website saves it for future reference. So each time you’re on a product page with True Fit, it guesstimates which size is best for you and how well it will fit! It’s GENIUS, really, and it works!)

The material is not what I was expecting at all. But in the best way possible! It’s a pique jacquard-like fabric that super soft, has a great weight to it, and doesn’t wrinkle. Did you catch that? DOES-NOT-WRINKLE. I knew we would be going straight from the airport to the office in Atlanta and I wouldn’t have time to change in between. This dress proved to be the perfect outfit for the occasion because it was so fuss-free!

Oh, and my little snail bag?! I HAD TO. I have been lusting after this little guy (I think Lydia and I named him Sammy) since I saw it at the spring preview during NYFW last September. When I saw it on sale, I was at the checkout screen entering in my payment info within seconds. And I’m so glad I did! Is it practical? No, not really. To be honest, my iPhone 6 doesn’t even fit inside, BUT this dress has pockets so it worked out just fine. ๐Ÿ™‚

If you have an outfit or boyfriend with pockets and you only need your keys, some cash, your cards, and lip balm, it’s the perfect size! But I fully intend on using it as a decorative piece in my new apartment when it’s not in use. ๐Ÿ™‚ #TwoForOne

central park lake row boats boathouse

Back to the boating .. I did all of the rowing during our hour-long boat session because Lydia had to keep her hands free to use her camera. (What was your excuse after photos were done, Lydia?! Haha, just kidding!) And oh my gosh, it was quite the shoulder workout! I was sore for a day or two afterwards!

central park new york city row boats on the lake

Since it was so spur of the moment, we weren’t exactly prepared. For starters, I was wearing bow wedges! And moving around a little metal boat filled with two people, all of Lydia’s camera equipment, both of my computers, and both of our phones and purses was just a teensy bit nerve-wracking! 😂

But hey, we’ll do anything for photos!

central park nyc

kate spade garden leaves dress, central park row boats

kate spade garden leaves dress

kate spade leaf dress, central park row boats

kate spade leaf dress, red valentino bow sandals

kate spade snail bag

kate spade spring 2015

what to do in central park new york city

rowboats in central park

row boats new york city

leaf printed dress

kate spade wicker snail clutch crossbody bag

Kate Spade Garden Leaves Dress (on sale here, also available here!)
Kate Spade Wicker Snail Crossbody Bag (on sale!)
Red Valentino Bow Wedges (old, similar here & here)
Banana Republic Ruffled Trench Coat (old, similar here)
borrowed Lele Sadoughi Necklace
Michael Kors Watch
Ralph Lauren Bracelet
Lele Sadoughi Pearl Cuff
Coach Sunglasses

Just in case you were thinking it was all smooth sailing out there… #outakes Too bad Lydia didn’t capture one of the two moments where our oar came unattached!

boat outtake 1

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Leave a Comment


  1. 6.10.15
    TOPS said:

    I am obsessed with those bow wedges!


  2. 6.10.15
    Emma said:

    I was actually at Central Park this past Sunday and walked past the rowers, I’d love to do it sometime because the scenery is so beautiful! Very pretty dress(:

  3. 6.10.15
    Bets said:

    This ensemble is perfection. Love the dress and purse! You look great too, so fit and toned.

  4. 6.10.15
    Jessica said:

    Your dress is adorable! You look like you should be yachting! ๐Ÿ™‚


  5. 6.10.15

    I love this print!! I’ve been eyeing it for a while – so cute!

  6. 6.10.15
    Mom said:

    I love your little snail purse! Showed the pics to your dad and said isn’t ‘Sammy’ cute? His response was “Doesn’t look too functional.” Men – what do they know? Have fun with Ellen and the rest of the gang in Palm Springs. Loving your Snapchats about your new Apple. I can only say they are lucky it’s you and not me! Lol

  7. 6.10.15
    Meghan said:

    Literally the cutest shoot ever. Knowing how much goes into photos, I give you major props for making this happen!

  8. 6.10.15
    PaigeP said:

    You make rowing a boat (in a cute dress) look easy. I would have been a sweaty mess before picture taking even began! Gorgeous dress and photos, by the way!

  9. 6.10.15
    Alexandra said:

    This is way too funny! Love the outtake – you make it look so easy!

    Warm Regards,

  10. 6.10.15
    iReply said:

    Do you live in fantasy land? You state that the dress does not wrinkle but the pictures clearly show wrinkling.

    • 6.10.15
      Jessica Sturdy said:

      Yep, just living in a fantasy land over here! Of course fabric will bunch together when you sit down, that’s obvious. The fabric is not wrinkled upon standing is the great part. (See full length photos outside of the boat.) The fabric is slightly embroidered to give an almost quilted look up close so if you, in your fantasy “anonymous name” land, think it’s wrinkled – it’s not.

      • 6.10.15

        Two for you Jessica, two for you.

      • 6.10.15
        iReply said:

        OK , so I was referring to the full length photo, but lets assume it is not wrinkled for the purposes of this comment…why would you want to wear a dress that looks wrinkled in a photo? Where is the sense in that…especially when the dress costs more than $226 (and that’s on sale).

        • 6.10.15
          Jessica Sturdy said:

          That’s the thing, it doesn’t look wrinkled to me. And luckily, I’m the only one that has to wear it! Keep wearing your crease-free clothes and keep doing you, girl.

  11. 6.10.15
    Jamie said:

    These photos are too cute! Love the bows on the shoes!


  12. 6.10.15

    Love this outfit… and that bag is the cutest thing ever!!!!

  13. 6.10.15
    Melinda said:

    That purse is the cutest!!

  14. 6.10.15
    Briggs said:

    My sister and I rented one of those 2 years ago when we visited New York and we had quite the adventures too. We’ve both done lots of kayaking and canoeing in the past (could I sound anymore Canadian lol) and it was still a struggle.!! Those things are hard to maneuver, so I commend you for giving it a whirl in a dress and wedges! We still had a great time and I have some pretty hilarious pictures of my sister rowing! Looking forward to the rest of your NYC posts – I just spent the weekend there to attend the Belmont Stakes and miss it already ๐Ÿ™‚

  15. 6.10.15

    Bahaha I love that last picture! You look gorgeous and I love your snail purse!

    Her Heartland Soul

  16. 6.10.15

    That snail bag is possibly the cutest thing! Super cute pictures!

    Madison Martine

  17. 6.10.15

    Such a fun shoot! And the snail purse!!

    Liz @

  18. 6.10.15

    Kudos to you and Lydia for braving this! I can almost guarantee that.. I would look a total disaster trying to sit still + row + not tip a boat over while trying to get photos taken. So I applaud you and your finesse!

    Josh | The Kentucky Gent

  19. 6.10.15
    Susie said:

    This is like the cutest shoot ever! I love everything about it: the dress, the snail (Hi Sammy!) and the location! So perfect!


  20. 6.10.15
    Jillian said:

    This is the most fun shoot I’ve seen in awhile! I’m completely obsessed! You go girl with the rowing and thank you for the Kate Spade inspiration!
    XO, Jillian

  21. 6.10.15
    Elisabeth said:

    I simply adore your outfit. That dress is amazing. I love the color and the pattern, it’s so pretty and perfect to wear in the warmer weather. Those shoes are adorable.

    Diary of Elegance

  22. 6.11.15
    Dana said:

    I was so excited to see these photos when you were on SnapChat! Looks like you and Lydia had a blast and the pictures came out great!

    Pink Champagne Problems

  23. 6.11.15
    Katie said:

    OMG girl, this dress is adorable!! And what a great backdrop! Love it!
    xo – Katie –

  24. 6.11.15
    T said:

    It’s true the material is exquisite, and also true (THOSE ARE NOT WRINKLES) It’s the material stitching and pattern. I was so impressed with the True Fit. I would have never knew to try the size they recommended and it too came in the mail fitting like a glove. So glad you also had the same luck I did. The Memorial Day sale was definitely a lucky find too!

  25. 6.12.15


    You guys nailed it.


    Kelly | Kelly in the City

  26. 6.12.15
    Kate said:

    This is such a cute post! Glad you decided to rent a boat! And your bow wedges are adorable!

  27. 6.16.15

    That dress is SUCH a Kate Spade dress haha and I absolutely adore the snail bag! I think kitschy bags like that are so fun and such a great statement and conversation starter.


    COFFEESLAG choices from the NetAPorter Sale

  28. 6.18.15

    Oh my goodness sounds like such an adventure but totally worth it! LOVE the dress and that bag was worth it- so what if it’s more of a decor piece- it’s an adorable piece of decor!

    C’s Collection

  29. 6.22.15
    Nan said:

    I love your dress, I was eyeing the skirt and top version but then the skirt sold out so quickly. Such a cute pattern! Impressed that you took these photos on a rowboat in central park, I am such a klutz that I probably would have fallen right into the water..eek!

  30. 6.29.15

    That dress is absolutely gorgeous!! And I love the photos. The boat looks like so much fun!

  31. 11.23.17
    Orpuna said:

    Beautiful pictures on your site Thanks for sharing so beautiful posts