Reader ML has a tough fashion nut to crack:

Hi! I just bought a ticket to a Summer Solstice party at our local art gallery, I'm very excited. The dress code is "summer chic." My concern is that the party is going to be outside, and night temperatures are, oh...6 degrees C? They might have heat torch lamps and fire tables (common on patios around my city, because the evenings are chilly in the summer), but I run cold, and don't want to freeze, yet want to fit "summer chic". I think my budget is max $200, particularly if the items chosen are good additions to my summer closet. I'm 5'2, a size 10-12, and quite hourglass shaped, and a large bust. Brown hair/brow eyes, and skin the colour of coffee that's been liberally mixed with milk (I'm on the lighter side of biracial). I love colour, I don't often choose patterns, but I do like the idea of patterns. Also, it would be best if you choose from stores in my city [please redact this, but I'm in [a city to be named ... NEVER....but its in our neighbor to the North]!- so we have stores like Anthro, Forever 21, H&M, Zara, J.Crew, Club Monaco, Banana/Gap, Aritzia, Tristan, Jacob - it's cool if you pick items from stores that aren't here though, even just for inspiration/ideas]. The party is in a week - so most onlne orders wouldn't arrive in time. I'd also be cool with accessory/shoe suggestions...if you have any. Thanks! 
Okay - so I'm going to (a) look for items that will be a bit warmer and (b) try to look for items that will layer well while still giving off the summery vibe you're going for.  I'm also going to try to do something I don't usually do and build *specific* outfits from a few of the retailers above.  You can use them as inspiration at whatever store you go to - but I also think that way, you can go to one store and simply try on what I recommended as well.
Emblem Wide Legs at Anthropologie ($98 - I love the dark blue of these, though there is a lovely linen pair that comes in petite lengths - but without the pattern.)
Anakena Maxi Dress from Anthropologie ($148 - I love the colors in this - pretty for the summer but not SO bright you couldn't use it other times - and the maxi means you could put leggings on under neath and either this dress or those pants would go with the same blazer/sweater/top.)
Adelle Cardigan from Anthropologie ($88 - I would wear this with either the dress or the pants - though it also comes in a yellow/orange - I might try both. You might try belting it over a cream shirt with the blue pants or just wearing it over the dress.  I think it would help keep you warm.  With the dress, I'd maybe add a white or gray scarf?)
Modern boot pants in kelly green at Gap (CA$37.99 - your size in these pants aren't on-line but hopefully they're in cute!  I personally wouldn't wear heels unless you're tougher than me - do you have wedge boots or just boots?  Or some sort of shoes you could wear thicker socks with?)
Fitted boyfriend Swiss dot shirt in navy at Gap (CA$42.99 - I love navy with kelly green.  I'd add a third color in jewelry [do you maybe have purple or orange] and then I'd wear a jean jacket or a navy or neutral blazer, like a tan blazer over it to add a little warmth.)
Printed dress in blue from Zara (79.90 CAD - lovely lovely lovely.  Will be great for the rest of summer when it warms up.  As for the temperature, I think I'd find some end of season textured nude tights and but them - they're likely to be on sale!)
Off-white Single Button Blazer from Zara (99.90 CAD - will match perfectly with this dress and then will go great for both work and play in the summer.)
Printed pencil skirt at Zara (59.90 CAD - If you'd like bolder colors - this skirt would be a lovely option. Though I would not wear it with white - maybe gray or black instead - but I think still with the cream blazer.  Does that make sense?)
Striped Tie-Front Patio Maxi Dress at Banana Republic ($160 CAD - I rarely love maxi dresses for petite people like, well, myself - but I think this would look nice on your curves - the v-neck  and the waist-tie would really emphasize your shape while, again, you could wear leggings under it without feeling silly.  Also, a blazer could be worn over it.)
Chambray Blazer on Banana Republic ($160 CAD - I love the idea of a light blue blazer contrasting with the navy and white dress.  Its also a lovely blazer for day to day wear for work.)  Lacquered Link necklace at F21 Canada in peach ($12.80 CAD - I think this nice light necklace would look BEAUTIFUl with this darker dress.  PERFECT.)
Iridescent Circle Earrings in cream and gold at F21 Canada ($6.80 CAD - lovely for summer.  If you don't object to cheap, cheap jewelry.)
Merona navy Madge Ballet Flat at Target (not sure of expense in Canada - but go check out all the cute flats at Target - I just bought these this past weekend!)
Frayed lightweight scarf in yellow at F21 Canada ($10.80 CAD - I love the yellow - add color to any outfit.)
I'm not going to like to you LM; if it was 40 degrees F outside - I would not go to ANY outside event, let along a "summery" event.  But have fun!  Hope you have fun and find some cute 

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