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Photo by Ashley Belanger

Unsung summer accessory: Koozies finally have a day in the sun 

Sweating the Florida sun is a given in the summer, but through it all, the koozie keeps its cool. (Well ... unless you get one of those especially shitty foam jobs that blow out faster than Jimmy Buffett's flip-flops.) The koozie (a.k.a. coozie, coolie, cozy, etc.) is nearly as critical an accessory as air conditioning or sunglasses for sensible Floridians. It's a poolside tool as much as a toy, necessarily insulating our refreshments to keep us hydrated, inebriated and, on more forgiving days, even a little less jaded.

Some koozie designs skew tourist-trashy, mirroring salacious bikini-clad postcard imagery, while others get punny with snort-laugh slogans or smirking, cheesy humor. Most often, koozies seem to pass between owners the way that lighters and ballpoint pens do – a friend wraps your can in a koozie and next thing you know, you have a drawer full of them and never sought to own a single one. Call it serendipkoozie?

But if you're in the market, you can root out old-school designs at thrift stores and the latest neon trends in can cover-ups at tourist shops in town. There's also local designers like VNM with their crude-dude line of koozies (thevnm.com, or at Etoile Boutique), which with a certain bro nonchalance shrugs suggestions like "Dump 'Em Out" and "Chill 'Em All." There's also newcomer VSOM (vsombrand.com), whose initials very seasonably stand for "Vacation State of Mind" and whose koozies show a dachshund in shades who seems to have found his beach on Gilligan's Island.

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