Summer is here – yeah! Vacations, barbecues, long weekends at the beach – sounds great, doesn’t it? But don’t you still need to go to work? And aren’t there times when you want to appear more polished than shorts and flip flops can achieve? The answer for the majority of my clients is “yes”, so I’m assuming that it’s the same for you. But don’t fret! You can feel just as summery in what you wear to the office as you do during your time off, and it’s simpler than you think.
If you read my blog often, you already know how much I love a third piece – a jacket or similar item that finishes off outfits and makes them feel completely pulled together. And in the summer, my absolute favorite third piece is a white blazer! A white blazer is a little bit of magic – it’s not only the ideal warm weather completer style, it also transitions the exact outfits that you’ve worn all spring long into summer-appropriate looks. And depending on which white blazer you choose, the same one can take you right into early fall. So, if you’re looking for one item to summer-ize your style, you need a white blazer.
Speaking of shifting a look from cool to hot – check out this photo. It’s almost exactly the same pieces with a black blazer on the left, but with the white blazer on the right, it feels oh so summer ready! And a white blazer isn’t only for the office – it can take you almost anywhere you need to go this season when you want to dress up a bit. So check out how to wear this summer staple at work, to an outdoor wedding and even to a girls’ brunch.
AT THE OFFICE
Nothing beats a blazer to pull together your 9 to 5 look, and having a classic selection in your closet is key - and that's why a white blazer is a must-have for your summer office style. On days when you just can’t bear to get creative with your outfit, keep it super simple – black pants, solid top, neutral bag and a print heel are all you need to feel perfectly professional and ready to take on the day.
STYLE TIP: If you live in a very warm climate, lightweight fabrics are ideal, like this linen blazer. But if your weather is more temperate, select a slightly more substantial blazer that can take you all the way from spring to early fall. And if you have any concerns about stark white feeling too summer specific, opt for off-white or ivory.
Street style photo from Lolobu, clothes by Theory, bag & heels by Jimmy Choo
AT A SUMMER WEDDING
You may not think that a white blazer would be your first choice to wear to a summer wedding, but ponder this: Do you want to buy a cardigan or shrug that only matches one dress and otherwise sits in your closet? Or do you want to grab something super versatile that will protect you from the chill when an outdoor wedding goes into the evening hours? I always vote for versatile – how about you?
STYLE TIP: For maximum versatility, forego trends and select a blazer with a classic shape and minimal details. Less is more in this case (especially if it’s an investment piece), so skip the statement sleeves and lace trim in favor of something timeless.
Street style photo from 9to5 Chic, clothes & accessories by Banana Republic
AT A GIRLS’ BRUNCH
Yes, you can dress to impress at a fun brunch with your friends, or you can go casual and easy – but how about something in the middle? The same way that a blazer adds instant polish to work clothes, it totally smartens up a t-shirt and jeans. Balance a tailored white blazer with distressed boyfriend jeans, metallic slides and big sunglasses and you’re super stylish and super comfy, too!
STYLE TIP: A white blazer is a little higher maintenance than a printed or dark one, so keep this in mind. I had one client who put on her new white blazer in the morning, and then came downstairs to say goodbye to her 1 and 3 year old kids – and needless to say, the blazer didn’t survive the kids. So if you’ve got little ones (or pets), my advice is to wait to put on your blazer until you get to the car.
Street style photo from Fashion Jackson, clothes & accessories by Rag & Bone
Will you wear a white blazer this summer? Ask me your outfit questions in the comments!