Cosy knitwear is all well and good but isn’t there something rather magical about summer dressing? The sun comes out and suddenly those vibrant prints and bold block colours that seemed garish during the winter become the only things you want to wear.
Of course, as with any season, summer dressing requires planning and that attention be paid to the occasion and environment. It doesn’t take a genius to work out that a chic beach look might not go down so well in the boardroom.
The key here is not to buy more – but to buy better. Creating a truly great wardrobe doesn’t mean just filling it full of options, many of which you’ll likely never wear, but scouting out those truly special pieces that you’ll love (and wear) for many a summer to come. It goes without saying, of course, that this is also a much more sustainable way to shop.
Creating this kind of wardrobe doesn’t need to be hard work either. Thanks to Harvey Nichols, which offers some of the world’s best-loved luxury brands both online and at its flagship store in Knightsbridge, you can kit yourself out for every summer occasion in one go. Here’s a little inspiration to get you started…
London comes alive during the summer but there’s no denying that traditional office attire and sweltering city streets are rarely the happiest of bedfellows. Soaring temperatures don’t have to mean leaving tailoring behind, however – simply swap your usual silhouette for something a little roomier.
Loewe’s wide-leg leather trousers are the perfect starting point for a seasonal work look. Pair them with Stella McCartney’s azure-hued collarless shirt – a great alternative to classic white for adding a little colour to your summer attire – and contemporary accessories from Coperni and Chloé for a modern yet effortless weekday outfit.
If your summertime sojourns to the country are usually filled with more weddings and garden parties than long walks you’ll need a wardrobe to accommodate. Take inspiration from your surroundings in Zimmermann’s lightweight linen maxi dress – its floral print is guaranteed to inspire envy – and swap heels for Jacquemus’ leather sandals. They’re smart enough for most occasions and far more grass-friendly than stilettos.
And to finish? Get matchy-matchy with Zimmermann’s coordinating blue and gold vermeil ring and Khaite’s sky-blue shoulder bag. Its slouchy shape is simultaneously nonchalantly casual and deceptively roomy.
The undisputed pinnacle of summer activities, if you’ve spent months dreaming about the holiday that’s going to finally see you relax next to a pool or ocean, you best put your most stylish foot forward. Again, look to Zimmermann for pretty-as-a-picture printed crochet bikinis and swap your tired sarong for Jacquemus’ jersey skirt. Featuring beaded embellishments and a wrap-style silhouette, its promises all the same summer vibes without worrying about loosening knots or tricky ties.
And, when it comes to accessories, there’s really only one place to look. Chloé’s coveted Woody collection has long been the go-to for stylish holidaymakers in the know. Plus, its raffia tote and denim sliders will look as great back at home as they do on the Côte d’Azur.
Whether this summer will see you front row at Beyonce’s Rennaisance tour or revelling with the masses at Glastonbury, there’s no doubt festival dressing has become its very own genre over the past few years. But that doesn’t mean you have to invest in pieces you’ll probably never wear again.
Courrèges eye-popping T-shirt and Jacquemus’ silver jeans may be a festival match made in heaven but both will look equally chic worn with blue denim and a white T-shirt, respectively, afterward. Likewise, Stella McCartney’s boxy trainers and The Row’s multi-wrap belt bag are as home in a muddy field as they are in Mayfair.
Visit harveynichols.com to shop more summer style.