From a backyard barbeque to an exciting new food truck festival, summer is all about staying active. But being outside in the sun all day doesn’t mean that you need to sacrifice style for comfort. By adding a few key pieces to your wardrobe, you’ll be able to effortlessly fine-tune your style to fit the challenges of summer’s sometimes harsh and unpredictable weather.
Read on for some summer casual style ideas you can use to look your best while also staying cool this season.
Tip #1: Lightweight Dresses
Lightweight summer dresses are perfect for warm weather and come in a variety of styles, lengths, and colors. Summer dresses are typically made of lightweight, breathable fabrics such as cotton, linen, or rayon. These fabrics help keep you cool and comfortable in the heat. These flowing and oftentimes colorful pieces are perfect for a wide range of occasions, including picnics, barbecues, beach outings, outdoor concerts, and casual outings with friends.
Another benefit of wearing dresses in the summer is that they can be worn formally or casually depending on the occasion. A wide-brimmed hat can provide some shade on a sunny day and add a chic touch to your outfit. A straw hat is a classic summer accessory that can pair well with any summer dress, immediately dressing down your look while staying polished.
Tip #2: Cropped Tops
A cropped top is a type of shirt designed to expose the midriff area—and you don’t need to have a flat stomach to look great in one. A high-waisted or pair of pants can complement a cropped top perfectly by providing coverage for the midriff area while still showing off the style of the top. Cropped tops can also be paired with shorts or jeans for a more casual look. For a more edgy look, try pairing a cropped top with high-waisted ripped jeans and combat boots.
Cropped tops are a great option for summer events, especially when paired with high-waisted shorts or skirts. If you’ll be heading to an event early in the morning when temperatures will be cooler, toss a jacket over your cropped top for lightweight coverage that can easily be removed later in the day. It’s important to note that some events may have dress codes that prohibit midriff-baring attire, so it’s always a good idea to check the dress code beforehand.
Tip #3: Linen Clothing
Linen fabric is lightweight, breathable, and has a unique texture that makes it ideal for summer clothing. It has a natural, slightly rough texture and a subtle sheen. Linen clothing comes in a range of colors, but it’s most commonly found in neutral tones like beige, white, and gray.
Linen clothing can be worn for casual outings like brunch or shopping. Pair a linen top with denim shorts or linen pants for a comfortable and stylish look. Linen fabric is dressy enough for a formal occasion but also keeps you cool and comfortable, making it a great choice for outdoor weddings.
Tip #4: Wide-Leg Pants
Wide-leg pants are a type of trouser that are fitted at the waist and hips but then flare out from the thigh to the hem, creating a wide-leg opening. They have a loose and flowy fit, making them comfortable and easy to wear. Wide-leg pants look great with a fitted top to balance out the volume of the pants. A tucked-in blouse or a cropped top can create a chic and trendy look for any occasion as well.
Wide-leg pants are comfortable for traveling because they allow for ease of movement and are not restrictive. Pair them with a comfortable top and sneakers for a casual and comfortable travel outfit. They’re also ideal for outings when you’ll be swimming, with a linen pair of wide-leg pants acting as the perfect cover-up. Wide-leg pants can even be worn to formal events such as weddings or cocktail parties. Pair them with a silk blouse and heels for a chic and sophisticated look.
Tip #5: Straw Accessories
Straw accessories are a must-have for any summer wardrobe. These accessories are made from woven straw, raffia, or other natural materials and are lightweight, breathable, and perfect for keeping you cool in the summer heat. Straw hats are a classic summer accessory that not only look great but also provide much-needed protection from the sun. They come in various styles, including fedoras, floppy hats, and visors, and they blend well with any summer fabric. Even better, the natural material instantly makes any outfit more casual.
Straw accessories work best when paired with other natural materials, such as linen or cotton. For example, a straw bag paired with a linen sundress creates a perfect summer look. Straw accessories are also great for outdoor events, such as music festivals or picnics, and the flat material makes them ideal to pack. This can make them another great option for travel, along with linen clothing and wide-leg pants.
Tip #6: Flowy Skirts
Flowy skirts are a perfect choice for summer, as they are comfortable, lightweight, and provide a breezy and relaxed look. These skirts come in various lengths and styles, ranging from maxi skirts to midi skirts to miniskirts, and are usually made of light and airy materials, like cotton, chiffon, or silk.
Flowy skirts look great when paired with a simple top, like a basic T-shirt or tank top. This creates a casual and effortless look that’s perfect for everyday wear. If you want to add some definition to your waistline, adding a belt to a flowy skirt can create a more flattering silhouette. This works especially well with maxi skirts or high-waisted skirts. Flowy skirts are ideal for beach days, music and cultural festivals, or anywhere else where you’re looking for a more boho, relaxed vibe.
Tip #7: Rompers and Jumpsuits
Rompers and jumpsuits are versatile one-piece outfits that can be dressed up or down. A romper typically has shorts on the bottom, while a jumpsuit is full-length. They both come in various styles, fabrics, and patterns, making them perfect for any fashion preference. These one-pieces look great with accessories, such as statement earrings, a belt, or a hat. This can add some dimension and create a more polished look.
Rompers and jumpsuits are perfect for summer events where you’ll be doing a lot of moving, such as barbecues or outdoor concerts. They’re comfortable and easy to move in, making them great for spending time outside and dancing the night away.
Tip #8: Denim Shorts
Denim shorts are a summer staple that now come in a wider range of shades, washes, and styles than ever before. Denim shorts look great with a variety of tops, such as cropped tops, tank tops, or flowy blouses. Choose a top that complements the shorts and creates a balanced look with the sleeves of your outfit. Note that denim shorts come in many lengths, so don’t be afraid to try on a few pairs until you find a length that makes you feel comfortable.
Denim shorts are perfect for casual outings, such as running errands, grabbing lunch with friends, or going to the beach. Denim shorts are also great for outdoor activities, such as hiking or camping. They’re durable and can withstand rough terrain while still looking cute. Adding some accessories, such as a belt, sunglasses, or statement jewelry, can add some personality and elevate the outfit without looking too dressy.
Tip #9: Bright Colors and Prints
Bright colors and prints are a fun and popular trend in summer fashion. They can add a pop of color and personality to any outfit, and there are endless options to choose from. Popular choices for neon items in the summer of 2023 include lime green, Barbie pink, and animal prints.
When it comes to styling bright colors and prints, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, it’s important to balance the bright or bold pieces with more neutral or subtle pieces. For example, if you’re wearing a bright pink top, pair it with white or denim bottoms to balance the look. You can also mix and match prints, but be sure to choose prints that complement each other and are in the same color family.
Getting Ready for Summer
The summer season is all about experimenting with fashion. Without the need for a heavy coat or school bag, you’re free to explore more breezy and fun styles you might be more restricted from during the fall and winter. For example, if you work at a school with a business casual dress code, you might want to try out bright neon or comfy sandals in your downtime. Showcase your style on cabi and connect with other fashion enthusiasts to make the most out of your summer wardrobe.