Sensational Summer Fashion
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“ When it comes to looking good on holiday, this summer is going to be the easiest one in years. OK, before you get too excited, I haven’t stumbled upon the magic bikini that instantly makes you look like Gisele –although if it’s out there, you’ll be the first to know. But what I can promise is that your suitcase will pretty much pack itself, because SS15’s trends come into their own when you’re off-duty.
Not so many years ago, we had a summer of colourful power dressing, all boxy tailoring and angular shift dresses in Lego colours. This worked really well for going to work, but left us a little bit nowhere when it came to the beach. This year’s vibe, however, is very much about playtime. The message that boomed loud and clear from the catwalks was: ‘I am out of the office, and will respond to your enquiry upon my return.’
Seventies bohemia? Letting it all hang out gets a lot easier once you are just hanging out. Denim? The very stuff that cold-beer-on-a-warm-evening dreams are made of. The safari trend? Awesome on an early-morning sightseeing walk; never quite works if you’re trudging to the high street for a paper and a pint of milk. Lace-up sandals? Best showcased by pedicured and tanned summer feet. Saddle-shaped handbags? No room for A4 files or your pre-holiday-diet packed lunch, but perfect for a pair of sunglasses and your ice-cream cash. (The diet stops the moment you carry the suitcase out of your front door. Obviously.)
For the perfect holiday wardrobe, close your eyes and imagine your time away. Think about what you will put on when you wake up. If this will be a bikini and a cover-up, worn for breakfast, then pack several bikinis and a few cover-ups. If it will be trousers and T-shirts for walking, then you need at least three combinations, in mix-and-match colours. Then do the same for evening: will you be lounging at home or dining out? What will you be walking on: cobbles, sand, grass? Oh, and anything that can’t be handwashed, dried on the balcony and worn without ironing goes on the no pile. (I am strict about that. You will thank me.)
Take two warm things that can be layered together – an unstructured, silky blazer
and a ribbed cardigan, for instance – and wear both on the plane, along with the most covered-up and sober of the outfits in the to-pack pile. By wearing your holiday clothes to travel, you lighten your suitcase and get the mood started before you even leave home.
But this will all come naturally, because your holiday wardrobe is what the best of this summer’s clothes are destined for. The out-of-office automated response – to match this summer’s out-of-office fashion – can’t come soon enough. Am I right or am I right?
The Guardian’s Fashion editor, Jess Cartner-Morley