I'm pretty strict when it comes to a summer capsule wardrobe. Years ago, I might have been tempted to ensure there were loads of summer dresses and loose-fitting trousers in my wardrobe, but I'm now set on only a few items. This reasoning is absolutely to do with sustainability and ensuring my wardrobe works as hard as possible for me, but also, when it's hot, you don't want options—you just want pieces that make you look and feel good.
I've finally narrowed down my warmer-weather outfits to just nine pieces. It doesn't seem like very much, but all of these items are perfect for mixing together and creating different looks. Not to mention, I've included plenty of accessories. Sunglasses, a pair of sandals that work with everything, and a proper basket bag will do brilliant things for your outfits.
Below, you'll see the nine items I recommend that should be in everyone's summer capsule wardrobe. Note that there's no mention of swimsuits, as this isn't for going on holiday, even if plenty of these pieces work for that, too. Rather, it's for your day-to-day looks during the summer.
1. Oversize Shirt
If there's one item I can't do without during the summer, it's an oversize shirt. It can be in any colour you want—although my preference is a white or striped version—and just know you'll wear it all the time. Whether worn with jeans, shorts or knotted over a dress or your swimming cossie, this will be your summer saviour.
Maison Margiela Cotton-Poplin Shirt (£435)
H&M Oversized Cotton Shirt (£20)
2. Summer Dress
I think everyone needs a summer dress that makes them feel great. You know the frock that you can throw on when it's boiling and you still manage to stay looking cool? That one.
Sleeper Atlanta Off-the-Shoulder Shirred Linen Midi Dress (£245)
Mango Broderie Anglaise Cotton Dress (£60)
3. Basket Bag
Take a tip from our French pals and opt for a basket bag during the summer. My preference is oversize in case there's a call for a picnic and you need it to double up as your picnic basket.
Loewe Shell Large Leather and Raffia Basket Bag ($475)
Saint Laurent YSL-Plaque Wicker Basket Bag (£1190)
Don't forget to pack your sunnies every day of summer. Sure, one minute it'll be raining, but the next, it'll be sunny.
Le Specs Oh Damn! Rectangular Sunglasses (£60)
& Other Stories Rectangular Frame Sunglasses (£39)
This season, there's been a lean towards '90s-style sandals. Flatforms and chunky flip-flops are where it's at. My best tip, however, is to keep them simple so that they go with everything you own.
M&S Collection Leather Flatform Flip Flops (£35)
FitFlop Eloise Leather Wedge Slides (£110)
You might not be much of a shorts person, but in the height of summer, nothing else will do. Look to Lorna of Symphony of Silk, who always manages to make her looks chic.
Arket High Waist Denim Shorts (£45)
Isabel Marant Étoile Parana Ecru Cotton-Blend Shorts (£270)
7. Plain T-Shirt
Black and white T-shirts have saved me again and again during the summer. Tuck one into jeans, shorts, and skirts and you'll look chic and fresh.
X Karla The Classic Cotton-Jersey T-Shirt (£50)
COS Slightly Cropped Jersey T-Shirt (£25)
8. White/Off-White Jeans
I never used to be a white-jeans person, but about five years ago, I realised just how great they look in the summer. My preference right now is wide-leg versions.
Frame Le Italien Cropped High-Rise Wide-Leg Jeans (£335)
Free People Thrills Pulp Jeans (£118)
9. Casual Jacket
If I lived in L.A. or somewhere else equally as warm, I probably wouldn't include a jacket. But I live in the UK, and it gets cold in the summer. So a light jacket is a necessity.
Nili Lotan Carter Fringed Suede Jacket (£2495)
Whistles Classic Wool Overshirt (£169)
Next up, these are the biggest spring/summer 2021 fashion trends to know.
This article originally appeared on Who What Wear
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