When it comes to spending your hard-earned cash, the key thing to ask yourself is “will I get thirty wears from this?”
The beauty of sustainable fashion is that every piece is designed to last a lifetime, and spending a little more will ensure your pieces really go the distance. For this reason it’s worth remembering, fit and fabric are key factors to consider, as is colour. Balance out a neutral palette with a few pops of interest in between – yellows, reds, blues and greens will serve you well.
Here’s our run-down of styles to help you on your way to building the ultimate summer wardrobe.
The 24/7 shirt
If the humble shirt only gets a look in when you’re dressing for work, then let us introduce you to ones that will rock your everyday wardrobe. For me, a shirt is the most vital of all the building blocks. Tucked into slim-fit trousers with heels or providing a splash of colour under a block print jumper, it’s an easy outfit maker. And for that reason you need one in your life, ideally tropically printed like Lulue or with splashes of colour akin to our Painters smock.
The day-to-night dress
Near impossible to find: the do-it-all, classic dress. Casual/Smart, Day/Night, Work/Weekend – this number needs to cover all manner of things. Choosing elegant dresses that are versatile without verging on boring is the key. Mid-length styles are advisable. As are those that can be worn over a roll neck, ditching the trainers for high-heels when the occasion dictates. With that in mind, we think both Aurora and Bailey are great options, and well worth the investment. For something more maxi, Emery is a contemporary alternative.
The all occasion trouser
If you haven’t yet bagged yourself a classic pair of culottes or experienced the free-spiritedness that a pair of palazzo pants can awaken, now is the time. We love styles with figure-flattering side pockets and just the right amount of drape to ensure a seamless transition from super cool to nonchalant elegance all in the switch of a shoe. These Jessica culottes are great for those wanting something cropped, but if you prefer to have a trouser to suit a longer leg, Susie’s my go-to.
The ultimate jumpsuit
The jumpsuit has fast become a fail-safe outfit option; particularly when faced with an ambiguous dress code, or dressing for multiple occasions in one weekend. Naturally, darker shades will always be chic, and we sway towards styles with capped sleeves, and wide legs like Darla. To get even more use from such an investment piece, wear over a classic shirt. Plumi’s particularly good for this.
The uplifting striped top
A stripe always lifts a look and is pretty much a summer must-have. Rather than opting for the obvious nautical-inspired blue and white style, try injecting a shot of colour with this red and white version that will always feel a little unusual no matter how many years you cling to it. Alternatively, go for something that will transition across the seasons like Lida. If you just love the freshness that blue and white delivers, look for difference in the details. Fiona’s contrasting stripe and Kamala’s dramatic ruching offer just that.
The stand-out separate
A printed skirt or pair of shorts will always come in handy, and we think spending a little extra will serve you and your wardrobe well. Midi-length ensures timeless appeal, and if there was one item I was most excited to build into my own collection this summer, it was Fia. Choosing styles that can work equally well with a cropped knit and trainers as with a silk top and elegant accessories is essential. Both the De Kooning skirt and these Roxia shorts were designed for that very purpose.
The all-rounder top
A top that can do bo-ho style when paired with vintage jeans just as easily as dressed-up elegance when worn with smart separates is near impossible to come by. But Komodo’s Camila top with cut-out lace detail and silky drape seems to do just that. Navy is timeless, but for those of a darker complexion nude might suit you better. If sleeveless isn’t your thing, but you still want something with stand-out appeal, Clemence is worth a closer look.
introduce items that will sit alongside your existing wardrobe rather than throwing the baby out with the bath water
If you’re just beginning on the sustainable journey, I’d start with the all-essential shirt and a pair of culottes. That way you’ll be introducing items that will sit alongside your existing wardrobe rather than throwing the baby out with the bath water sartorially speaking. Gradually build from there, adding more unique and one-off pieces as times goes by. When it comes to spending your hard-earned cash, the key thing to ask yourself is “will I get thirty wears from this”. If the answer is yes, and you can visualise how it will blend with what you already have, then you know you’re onto a keeper.Index