When you think of summertime dressing, do you conjure up images of pastel florals and wafty fabrics?

It’s true that for some, this is a perfectly wonderful way to dress during summertime. It’s also true that for many others, this is a complete disaster.

One of the first things I teach my clients, is the importance of dressing for you first, then adapting your outfit to the weather and the occasion.

If you are not a pastel person and if you know that you suit deeper, darker colours best, you may need a bit of inspiration as to how to lighten up your outfits up during the warmer months.

Five Ways To Lighten Up A Dark Outfit

1. Choose a summer fabric and add a contrasting accessory.

Linen is a great choice at this time of year (unless you are a true classic dresser who can’t deal with the inevitable creasing).

Whether a linen shirt dress or some trousers and a top, you’ll stay cool and feel summery in this natural fabric whatever colour you choose.

To lighten things up, consider adding a pair of white sandals, plimsoles, trainers or espadrilles into the mix. Black and tan are another marriage made in heaven, try this if you prefer a less contrasting, more subtle look.

Alternatively throw on a metallic or lighter coloured necklace or earrings if black footwear is your only choice.

John Lewis & Partners Scoop Back Linen Dress, £65.00

2. Pick up a basket/straw bag.

These fun bags have been an Instagrammers dream for the last couple of summers. And whether or not you like to follow fashion, there’s no doubt that adding a straw bag into your outfit brings that summertime vibe in spades.

H&M Straw bag Reduced to £4.00

3. Go Monochrome

The contrast of black and white makes a strong statement alternative to soft sugary shades. Mix black and white together whether as separate pieces or pick a print that speaks to you. Elephants anyone?

Whistles Elephant print jumpsuit Reduced to £126.75

4. Choose Navy!

Navy is as dark as black but ever so slightly more summery. I love how this jigsaw linen belted dress has been styled with red sandals. That’s two tips for the price of one!

Jigsaw Linen Belted Dress, French Navy £82.50

5. Add a hat

This might not go down so well on your weekly meeting via Zoom, but when you are taking your daily walk in the sunshine, or doing the weekly shop, a hat is SUCH a style statement.

Oliver Bonas Striped Straw Floppy Hat £26

Which of these do you already own? I bet you can recreate at least two of these ideas without buying anything new. Dust off what you have and give these ideas a go. And don’t forget to let me know how it goes by leaving me a comment.

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