Have you noticed we're all kind of itching for fun, new summer clothes? We're slowly getting out and about, and we're finally tired of the same three sets of loungewear we've worn for the past three months. It's time for some color! Some prettiness! Something different! Turns out there's a lot of pent up demand for summer clothes - retail sales were up 17% last month. The best way to get what you want out of shopping for summer clothes is to have a capsule wardrobe. Buy your core pieces in a strict color palette so you can mix and match every piece into multiple outfits, and sprinkle in pops of color and a few fun accessories. Most of these Summer must-haves can be worn in Spring and Fall, so your cost per wear is next to nothing over time.
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Summer Capsule Wardrobe, The Only Eight Pieces You Need
Left to Right: (1) Neutral Tee, (2) Loose Blouse, (3) Gauzy Cardi, (4) Wrap Skirt
Left to Right: (5) Denim Skirt, (6) White Jeans, (7) Neutral Sandal, (8) Statement Jewelry
Related [Video]: Three Tips For maximizing Your Wardrobe
I've taken these 8 core wardrobe pieces and shown you how to create multiple outfits. Many of them are interchangeable, like the tees or white jeans. The idea is to start with a neutral base and add fun accessories to change it up every time you wear an outfit. Easy-peasy. But not boring.
1. A Neutral Tee
In college I had a group of guy friends who wore white t-shirts every Friday. I was like, GENIUS. I'm not even kidding. So I started wearing mine every Friday, too. And eventually Thursdays, Wednesdays, and Tuesdays, and you get the point. My favorite tees have a little man-made fabric in them to preserve their shape, are thick enough not to be see-through, and they are usually v-neck. And inexpensive. I do not like most slub (see-through) or linen (don't hold their shape) tees. Buy neutral so you can wear them with your colorful skirts and shorts and jewelry.
Related: Summer Shorts: How Short or Long Can You Go?
Ok, ok, I'll make room on your list for a tee in a pretty, non-neutral color. Wear these with a white denim skirt and jeans now, and with blue jeans in the fall.
2. A Loose Blouse
You know all those skinny ankle pants you have (or even "slim")? You need to pair them with a looser, fuller top to balance the look. Go longer if you want to cover your bum. Loose and soft blouses are also a good foil to shorts if you feel too exposed. There are so many pretty details right now like shirring, embroidery, eyelet, and the florals are so sweet!
I found the blue sleeveless Rebecca Taylor on sale, but fewer sizes are available. Same with the Reiss blouse.
3. A Gauzy Open Sweater or Wrap
Everyone has been asking me about gauzy summer sweaters since it's been a relatively cool start to summer. They are perfect to stuff in your handbag and pull out at the drop of an overactive AC in a museum or restaurant or your BFF’s frigid house. Great for wearing over a tank top when you need to be cool but covered. The proportions are key when you are layering. You want a shorter sweater over dresses, and a longer one over skinny jeans.
I'm already booking Fall Virtual Style appointments in August. Email me now to get on the list! [email protected]
4. A Wrap Skirt
Wraps are brilliant. They're adjustable day to day without any sewing! Plus, they just seem resort-ish to me, which is always a nice feeling. Wear with a tee and flip-flops to dress one down, and dress up with a pretty blouse and pumps.
5. White Denim Skirt
I think it goes without saying that the basis of classic and modern style is to have as many white clothes as possible. HA. Kidding. But you do need a white denim skirt. To wear with everything you own and for when it's too hot for your white jeans. It will even go to the office with the right heels and blazer.
6. White Jeans, duh
I really can't justify buying any more white jeans (last count 11 pairs) even though they are my signature. My uniform. I heart them so much. I also love off-white or ivory jeans for a variation. Gettin' crazy.
7. Nude Summer Sandal
Aka, the leg extender. Gives you loooong legs because there's no interruption. Plus, they'll go with every outfit you own. And, bonus points, you'll be able to wear them into Fall - I'll show you how.
8. A Piece of Fun Statement Jewelry
Again, I turn to coral and turquoise as great summer accent colors that you can pretty much treat as neutrals. You don't want to spend too much money on your summer jewelry because you are more likely to lose it or expose it to damaging things like sea salt and sweat. But if you can wear it year-round, then it's ok to spend a bit more, IMHO. Btw, statement jewelry is more subtle this season than in season's past.
8a. A Hat
You really must have a hat with UPF sun protection. Plus, they are such great Summer accessories! You'll find more hats, plus swimsuits here, Oh Joy, The Best Swimsuits and Coverups For Your Shape.
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