Deciding what to wear on a blistering summer weekend can be tricky. Make sure you stay stylish and cool with our definitive dressing guide
If getting your 9-to-5 style locked down isn’t difficult enough, knowing just what to wear when it’s sunny at the weekend can be an equally tricky business. The great British summer (all two weeks of it) signals BBQ parties, alfresco luncheons, park strolls and (all hail) Pimms o’clock. Lovely yes, but all have the potential to throw even the most sorted stylista into a wardrobe meltdown.
The general consensus amongst the Marie Claire fashion team is that weekend dressing needs to be practical but it shouldn’t compromise your style. We’re also all in agreement that getting the balance between fashion and function just right requires a bit of planning.
First and foremost ladies, consider your environment (wear stilettos to a garden party at your peril), know how long your day out is likely to last (if it’s late afternoon or early evening, cover-ups are a must), check the weather (obvs) and whether or not you’re going to be sat down all day (in which case high-waisted anything is a no-no).
Put simply, staying stylish in the sun is totally achievable, provided you think about the above and follow a few clever rules. Weekenders take note…
RULE 1: Keep It Comfortable.
The weekend means it’s time to relax the rules and your silhouette. Nobody wants to feel restricted in heavy-duty fabrics or tight trousers, so ditch the tailoring and choose a wide-leg culotte instead. We’re currently obsessed with the Mina pant at Freepeople and reckon it’s the investment purchase of the summer. Not only is it super comfortable, but it will keep you looking fashion blogger fresh all day. Wear it for morning market strolls, city sightseeing and Boris bike adventures. It’s also perfect for running around after tiny tots. We love it teamed with a soft denim jacket and relaxed New Balance trainers. A bandana will keep your fashion credentials in check.
RULE 2: Double Up.
Daytime brunching requires maximum style with minimal effort – or at least the illusion of! Put simply a co-ord is your brunchtime BFF. For a new-season take, look for a set with a midi length skirt in an interesting cut. This gorgeous split-front wrap-around style from Whistles is fun and flirty enough to wear with flat, tan sandals (making a lunch to late-night transition effortless). It’s also prim and polished enough to wear with a heel to a chic garden party or summer wedding.
Rule 3: Jeans Are Fail-safe.
Denim might well have its roots in workwear but nothing says smart-casusal like a great fitting pair or jeans. Up your denim game at the weekend with something standout – choose a loose-fitting, cropped style with a raw edge (newcomer denim brand Waven are currently nailing this trend), or try a utilitarian turn up. The Phoebe jean from MiH captures the two trends in one and the cropped length will show off Birkenstock’s and espadrilles alike.
Rule 4: Give Loose Layers Some Love.
Sometimes the best weekends are made from having no plans whatsoever, so you need your outfit to be as ready for anything as you are. When the temperature soars, swap out a plain vest top for a chic one-piece to ensure no pool party or beach trip is off limits. Showing some skin during the day calls for sleek monochrome elegance, so make sure it’s simple black or white. Team with loose layers in clean lines and stick to neutral palette. Shop this entire look now at purse-friendly Bershka.
Rule 5: Style A Sense Of Fun.
Let’s face it, most of us spend just about every millisecond looking forward to our weekend frolics, so why not inject a sense of fun into your weekend wears? Take off serious suits and slip into something less sensible. The appliquéd doodles and happy colours on this strappy dress from LF Markey makes it just the antidote to boardroom boredom. Spaghetti straps over tees are having a real moment so if the weather isn’t quite up to speed with your sunny new sense of style, pop a t-shirt underneath. Pool sliders not your thing? Work a chunky cleated sole ankle boot into this fashion equation.
Rule 6: Take On Tile Print
If you thought city shorts would see you through the season, we’ve got news. It’s time for something a little livelier. Print is a great way for colour-phobes to introduce something bright into their wardrobes and tile print is our current crush. If your style tends to be softly tailored, keep your silhouette simple with clean lines and let the pattern do the talking. Team these Uzma Bozai shorts with a silk shirt and you’ve got an outfit just as perfect for dress-down Fridays as it is for a smart Saturday.