Summer wardrobe essentials under $50
A few weeks back, one of my Instagram followers asked me to share my favorite summer bottoms. While responding to her and sharing my favorites. I thought why don’t I put together a Summer Essentials post that will serve as a guide for anyone who is looking to upgrade their summer wardrobe with versatile and affordable pieces that never go out of trend. Note- I will be sharing a separate post that will my favorite modest beachwear and natural beauty essentials.
All the summer essentials I am sharing today are great for everyday wear and also to dress up for special events. You can basically do any summer activity wearing one of these: from running errands in the scorching heat to chilling by the pool, to dinner dates and some are even appropriate for work. Without further ado, here are my
12 Basic Summer Essentials for your Closet Under $50
1 Striped Tee
Stripe T-shirt has long been a summer staple. The nautical-inspired striped looks great when paired with jeans or denim shorts or linen pants. They are eye-catching without being overwhelming.
I absolutely love the Everlane box tee. I own it in several colors (seen here and here). It’s not too long or too short. Perfect to wear it un-tucked with a cotton pant or jeans or you can dress it up by tucking in. Relaxed fit, not skin-tight. It’s made with 100% cotton, very soft and breathable. My pants are also from Everlane, it quickly became my favorite store to shop for basics. The pants are very slimming and comfortable at the same time. They are currently the most worn pants in my closet.
Shop this Striped Tee Look:
Tee (wearing size s) | Pants (very slim looking, wearing size 4) | Crossbody Bag | Wedges (similar here and here) | Hat | Hoops
Favorite Striped Tees
2. Chambray Pant
Another easy breezy summer wardrobe staple is chambray pants. The chambray fabric is extremely breathable and light, which makes it perfect for the scorching days of summer. Plus, it’s a classic neutral that pairs well with other summer clothing and totally remind me of the ocean.
Favorite Chambray Pants
3. Maxi Dress
Long, billowy, and breezy, the maxi dress is the perfect solution to beat the summer heat in style plus you don’t have to shave your legs to wear it :D. They are universally flattering, chic and comfortable.
I shared this JC Penney maxi in my summer outfits under $30 post. I love how flattering it looks on a curvy body, very slimming! The knot detailing adds a structure to the dress and makes it dressy. The length is perfect to wear it with sandals and love the fabric, it’s soft and comfortable. You can also dress up for casual summer weddings by accessorizing it.
Shop this Maxi Dress Look:
Dress (also available here; last seen here) | similar Kimono | similar heels | Bag
4. White Tee
A white Tee may seem simple and basic but it’s one of the most versatile summer wardrobe-essentials. You can pair it with literally everything and look instantly put together. So, whether you’re rocking trousers, a patterned skirt, maxi dress, or jeans, you can never go wrong with this staple piece.
I am totally digging this cropped tee with front tie-knot detailing. It looks super cute with high-waisted pants and midi skirts. You can wear it under sleeveless dresses/jumpsuits or over dresses to give am the impression of a skirt. The t-shirt is surprisingly thick and not see-through. Don’t size up for length, the front knot doesn’t look good loose. I got my regular size S.
Shop this White Tee Look:
Skirt (last seen here; wearing XS) | Tee (wearing S) | Pumps
Kimonos are my favorite layering piece in summer. They are lightweight, breezy, and versatile. Not only they provide extra coverage, but they also elevate your basics. I personally prefer structured kimonos over slouchy ones. Structured ones look more dressy and sleek.
Shop my current favorite Kimonos:
6. Linen pant
The lightweight, breezy bottoms that will have you looking and feeling cool this season: linen pants. I got my first 2 summers ago and ever since I am hooked by how easy they are. Perfect for running errands in the scorching heat and also as a beach coverup.
The pants I am wearing are from Old Navy. They are true to size and comes in several colors. The material is very soft and made with 100% cotton.
Shop this Linen Pants Look:
Top (last seen here) | Pants ( size S) | Sandals (also available here) | similar tote | Hair tie
Favorite Linen Pants
7. Straw Hat
Sun safety and style aren’t mutually exclusive. Block harmful rays while relaxing at the pool with one of these sun hats that also doubles as a fashion statement.
For outfit details, check this post: 8 Ways to style black Tee and Jeans
Favorite Affordable Hats: Fedora Hat | Boater Hat
8. T-shirt Dress
The perfect balance between flirty and fuss-free, the T-shirt dress is an ideal option when the weather’s a little too hot to handle. A T-shirt can be dressed up or down based on the occasion. A swing t-shirt dress will look great on pear and apple shape body type.
Shop this T-Shirt Dress Look:
T-shirt Dress (also like this) | Sandals (also available here)| Similar Kimono | Bag
Check out this post for more affordable t-shirt dresses-> Summer Outfits Under $30
9. Denim jacket
The closet staple that truly stands the test of time! Denim jackets are great for breezy summer nights. My closet is incomplete without a denim jacket. I wear them all round the year. Yes, I still wear jackets a ton even in the summer because indoors like in malls, restaurants, movie theaters, they tend to exploit the AC. I bet it’s 60 degrees inside all the time. So, I definitely need to wear a jacket this time of year.
My personal favorite denim jacket is this Madewell jacket. I have had it for 3 years and I still wear it a lot. The wash is beautiful and just goes with everything. It’s a great investment piece if you wear denim jackets a lot. If not, this Old Navy jacket is pretty cute and serves the purpose.
Left Outfit deets HERE | Right- Similar dress | Bag | Wedges
10. Tank Top
With the heat of summer upon us, welcome to the tank top season. Whether you’re headed to a to the office or need a quick cover-up for when you’re laying poolside, the basic sleeveless top is an easy, versatile summer staple that can be incorporated to fit looks from desk to date and into the weekend.
If you have followed me for long, you know that Madewell is one of my top places to shop basics. They make the softest and cutest tees and tanks. And also the fact that my friend Sasru (the beauty in the pic above) used to model for my blog when I started out. This was one of the summer looks I styled almost 3 summers back. It is still relevant to current fashion trends.
Shop this Tank Top Look:
Madewell Tank | Similar skirt here and here | Sandals | Tote
11. Straw Bag
One Summer trend that everyone loves is a straw bag. They are a seasonal fabric that pairs well with straw hats, sundresses, espadrilles, and all summer attire. A straw tote is ideal for the beach since you can fit in everything inside including a swim cover-up, Sunscreen, book, extra sandals, and other beach essentials.
The straw bag comes in a variety of styles from a crossbody, to satchel, clutch, and tote. I personally love this crossbody for everyday use. It’s the right size to fit all my essentials– my cardholder sunglasses, lip balm, and keys. It looks super cute with every summer outfit.
Outfit Deets-> 4th of July Outfit Ideas
Whether you are headed to the pool or to the farmers market. A pair of sandals is a must-have in every girl’s closet. They are particle and an elevated version of flip flops.
My sandals are from Steve Madden. The upper looks like they are Raffia but they are actually faux leather. I was a bit disappointed when I received them but kept it anyway because they looked cute with every outfit I tried. My other favorite sandals are this and this.
Shop this Summer Look:
Tee (wearing S) | Linen Pants | Sandals