The Ultimate Guide to Summer Layering

street style summer layering

It’s not something you’d usually consider during the warmer months, but the standard shorts and tee outfit can get a bit boring and over used. Here’s our guide to summer layering so you can mix up your wardrobe, and seasonal style. 

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When it comes to the British summer, we all know far too well how unpredictable the weather can be. You know that moment when the warmth of a T-shirt doesn’t quite cut it, the sun dips, and we utter the inevitable “should have bought jumper”.

Understanding the best ways to layer in these warmer months is a fail-proof back up, to the uncertainty of the heat, and the cold, and won’t leave you looking like you’ve raided the PE lost property.

Summer menswear should incorporate more than just the classic shorts and tees. There’s a plethora of on-trend ideas out there to suit any style for any situation; from BBQ’s to Weddings, festivals to weekends away.

summer street style
Easy summer street style
PHOTO CREDIT: The Fashion Tag

Vests

Avert your thoughts from the stained wife-beaters of an American trailer park, or the skin-tight stripes of your school PE vest, and picture a multi-layered summer essential, which can build up the ideal look.

Using a basic jersey to underlay your summer style is a great way to add a layer of warmth, colour and dimension. Pick a simple shade like grey, maroon or a pale pattern, and stick to cotton and breathable fabrics so they won’t cling. Picking up a few choices will last you the whole season and make your summer layering easy.

Tees

In a similar vein to the jersey vests, a good quality tee can add an extra layer of interest when popped under an unbuttoned denim shirt or open knit. Good quality tees can be worth investing in, and as like all layering items, it should be something you can wear on its own, too.

Sports branded tees are a key must have this season, and bold graphic logos add a touch of personality to a plain look. It’s worth considering a few tee variations; perhaps one with a round neck, one with a deeper V, and one with a button detail on the collar. This will add an edge to a plainer look.

shirt summer street style
Summer shirt style
PHOTO CREDIT: He Spoke Style

inspiration

Knits

Breathable, open knits are essential when it comes to summer layering. For the sake of variation, it’s a good idea to have a couple of go-to jumpers or cardigans, ranging in thickness, material and colour. These can take you from summer festivals, all the way through to autumn walks.

Though not for everyone, accessorising your look is key to adding interesting layers in unpredictable climates. Express yourself. Don’t be afraid to experiment with bolder prints or colours. We’re not talking about a thick woollen winter warmer here… Think linen or light cotton in bold colours, to complement a range of looks.

straight trousers street style
Simple summer street style
PHOTO CREDIT: Hypebeast

toppicks

Open Shirts

Open shirts are the key to layering. If you can take one thing from this guide, it’s this. The best part of shirt layering is the ability to kill two birds with one stone – or sometimes even three. Opt for something that works open over a T-shirt, as a shirt, or as a makeshift jacket.

Denim is a great fail-safe, and seems to never fall off trend. Choose a light denim for festivals or BBQ’s, and a darker hue if it’s to attend an evening event or party. Another great look is layering a check lumberjack over a plain or graphic tee. Checks are forever adaptable, and it can be a great excuse to insert a pop of colour into an otherwise boring display.

Tying a shirt around your waist is another clever trick which looks great, and acts as an easy way to carry an extra layer around for when the chill strikes.

Jackets

Owning a range of jackets is an easy way to ensure you aren’t caught out when the weather turns this summer. Layering with outerwear is a strong look, and can instantly transform an otherwise simple outfit.

From the classic bomber, which can be thin, breathable and lined with pattern and colour, to lightweight, packable waterproofs which can rescue you when the heavens open in the middle of your favourite band’s festival set.

open shirt street style
Open shirt street style
PHOTO CREDIT: W Magazine

alternatives

Feet

To suit your summer layers, and help finish your versatile warm-weather wardrobe, there are a few footwear choices which will last you the whole season.

Firstly, opt for a canvas trainer, like a low Converse in white or grey, for that casual, festival essential. They are practical, comfy, and come in so many styles. For more formal events, a leather boat shoe is a classic. Breathable and on-trend, they can complement shorts, jeans or linen trousers, and tie in nicely with leather belts of a matching colour.

The Ultimate Guide to Summer Layering

  • Opt for a lightweight jacket that can be easily stowed away or carried if necessary.
  • Revere collar shirts are great for summer, and can be worn either open or buttoned.
  • Lightweight knits are also brilliant for layering – add one to your outfit.
  • Vests are a solid option when worn underneath something else.
harrington street style
Lightweight jackets in summer
PHOTO CREDIT: NY Times

On That Note

All in all, layering shouldn’t be tricky. Remember, keep it simple, stick to tones and materials which work well together, and make the most of your money by ensuring every visible layer can be easily worn on its own, too. Take on board the advice we’ve given here and you’ll be well on your way to creating the perfect summer outfits in no time, it really is a lot simpler than it sounds.

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