10 Essentials For A Casual Summer Wardrobe

May 25, 2017


One of the best things about when the season’s change is that I get to create a new capsule wardrobe.  To begin my capsule wardrobe, I always like to include a core group of pieces, they are the items that my wardrobe can’t function without.  Here’s my personal list of 10 items I must have in my casual summer capsule wardrobe, along with the reason why I’ve picked each item.

Shopping Brake’s 10 Essentials For A Casual Summer Wardrobe:

  1. Denim Jacket.  The first piece that I add to my summer capsule wardrobe year after year is a denim jacket.  Layering a denim jacket over a t-shirt (or other top) adds a little extra interest to my looks, as well as warmth in air conditioned settings.  I’ve had my current jacket (by Kut From The Kloth) for 5 years and it’s still going strong, but this one by Kut From The Kloth is similar.
  2. Lightweight Cardigan.  When I’m not in the mood for my denim jacket I typically reach for a lightweight cardigan.  Once again the cardigan adds a little interest to my outfit of the day, while providing a barrier from air conditioned settings.  This Jackie Cardigan from JCrew pairs well with jeans and a button down shirt or a tank top and shorts.
  3. Graphic Tee.  When it’s too hot to layer anything a graphic print tee adds a little interest to an outfit all on its own.  I recently picked up this one.
  4. Shorts.  There are always at least a few days when it’s just too hot to wear anything else, and shorts fit the bill.  I’ve had these 4 inch shorts by JCrew for 3 years and they still look great.  If you aren’t a shorts gal, once again skirts are another good option.
  5. Cropped Jeans.  In air conditioned settings my legs get cold fast.  Cropped jeans and pants provide a little extra warmth and come with the extra bonus of covering up my legs on days when I’m too lazy to shave. 🙂  If you aren’t a pants gal, long skirts is a great alternative.  I have 2 pairs of boyfriend jeans, white and blue denim, which are from last season but these and these are similar.
  6. Weekend Outfit.  Since I work in a casual office setting, everything in this list except for the shorts can be worn during the workweek.  But sometimes I want a change from my weekday outfits.  Since I’m not a dress gal, I’ll sport cropped cargo pants with a tank top as my weekend look (I recently picked up these cargo cropped pants and this black stripe tank top).  But if you are a dress gal, this maxi dress is a lovely alternative.
  7. Flip Flops.  No summer wardrobe can be complete without summer’s easy to wear shoe, flip flops.  I like these white one’s because they pair well with the white shorts and cropped cargo pants featured here.
  8. Espadrilles. One shoe style I see every summer is espadrilles.  I recently picked up these espadrilles.
  9. Peasant Top.  Peasant tops are carried every summer season by retailers, and for a very good reason.  Because this style of top is loose and flowy by nature, I can stay cool while breaking my daily outfits out of the “t-shirt and jeans” rut.  This top has a pretty mosaic print.
  10. Summer Bag.  During the hot months I like to lighten up my bag and swap my leather bag for a lighter material such as a canvas print.  This leaf print bag ties together the colors of this capsule wardrobe.  Crochet and straw are other fun alternatives.

Having a group of essential items for my summer capsule wardrobe gives me a strong foundation upon which I can build out the rest of my wardrobe for the summer season.

Interested in reading more about top ten lists?  Check out my previous posts:

What are your top 10 must have’s for your summer wardrobe?


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