Last year I created a blog post about basics you’d need for Fall and soo many of you told me how helpful it was while building your wardrobe for the season. I decided to create a similar post, this time for summer!
I know what you’re thinking… summer is halfway over. While that is true so are two other things: 1) these basics will get you through next summer and the summer after that bc these are seasonal staples, and 2) in South Carolina temperatures feel like summertime well into October.. so if you live near me you’ll have plenty of time to get some use out of these items.
Check out my list below for the 10 items you’ll need to build a classic summer wardrobe!
The ultimate summer basic is a simple white dress that you can dress up (with heels + a silk scarf) or dress down (with sneakers + a fun bag). There are soo many options when it comes to white dresses: t-shirt dresses, puff-sleeve dresses, strapless dresses, etc. Simply find the style you’re most comfortable in and then have fun playing around with it. You can wear it to any seasonal occasion– except a wedding or any bridal event. But the best part is, we’re living in a time when fashion seriously has no rules, so feel free to wear this dress well after the Labor Day cutoff.
2. Denim Shorts
Can you say you’ve experienced summer if you didn’t wear denim shorts? The answer is no.. and I’d know bc I’ve spent the last three months avoiding them thanks to my growing baby bump. But I JUST found a pair of maternity shorts that I LOVE and it feels like I’ve officially started enjoying summer. Something about denim shorts just feels so carefree and timely. Of course they pair well with a T-shirt, but I also love adding something super feminine on top for a casual night on the town. While it would be nice to have a stack that you can rely on, all you really need is one great pair– trust me!
3. Black Swimsuit
A black swimsuit is the perfect companion for a day at the beach, lying by the pool, or in-between bc it’s so easy to make it look chic. You can pair it with a colorful cover-up, choose a solid one, or opt for a monochromatic look. I also love adding bold, gold jewelry (that I’ll take off when in the water) to add some elevated style. And we all know how flattering the color can be so let’s not pretend like we don’t need it most when we’re wearing the least!
4. Brown Sandals
A good brown sandal works as a nude shoe that almost disappears. You can pair it with shorts or a dress and you can wear it shopping or to a casual dinner. You’ll feel comfortable in every situation. It gives your outfit the opportunity to shine without feeling basic or like an afterthought. There are so many style options, so I recommend choosing two or three to ensure you’ll always have something that works.
5. Neutral Wedges
Just like the brown sandals, a good pair of neutral wedges can be worn across the entire spectrum of your summer wardrobe, except instead of blending in like the sandal, these act as an exclamation point to the end of an otherwise simple sentence. Throw them on with a pair of shorts to add a little sass, or polish off a dress outfit. And since so many special events take place outside during the summer, you can trust that this option will keep you feeling leveled while still being elevated (pun intended lol). But if wedges aren’t really your thing, you can shop my selection of mules here!
6. White Tee
This old faithful will get you through soo many uncertain situations. Have a skirt or summer pants and can’t figure out what to pair ? Add a white tee. Running late for something and need to look effortlessly cool? Throw on a white tee, denim and some fun heels. The possibilities are endless. You just need the perfect tee to get you there!
Ok, I know I said I’d share basics with you, but sunglasses are a great opportunity to play with the season’s trends without fully committing to uprooting your wardrobe (or budget). I always add a couple of pairs of sunglasses to my collection each year.. which explains why my collection is getting pretty sizable. But I always have a pair for whatever outfit I throw together, and I can always count on them giving me just the right amount of edge to crossover into “cool girl” territory.
8. Beach Tote
This season, a tote bag is just as important, if not more, than your purse. You’re likely gathering with friends + family by the water so you’ll need something sizable to keep up with your necessities for summer fun (and possibly a change of clothes). Don’t let this accessory be an afterthought that comes across as an old gym bag. Choose something intentional that can match a variety of styles while still making a semi-bold statement.
9. Straw Hat
The ultimate statement piece of the season is the straw hat. Something about it feels very European and timeless. I love that hats have such personality and can take over an entire look when given the chance. Buy one for the fashion aspect of it all, but actually wear it for it’s functionality. Nothing protects the skin on your face like a brim!
10. Graphic Tee
For those super hot summer days when the idea of wearing “real clothes” just isn’t an option, opt for a graphic tee. Not only does it provide a window into your personality or taste (bc you can quite literally tell the world something about you), it also does a fabulous job of hiding the inevitable sweat marks that come with the season. While it looks great with jeans shorts, I love juxtaposing graphic tees with ultra-feminine pieces like skirts. And once the air starts to cool and the season begins to change, you can pair the same tees with jeans and a blazer for an easy look that screams CHIC!