Tips From A Personal Stylist: Building A Capsule Summer Wardrobe


[Photo Credit: Victor Boyko/Getty]

Packing for our summer holidays can be a difficult and time-consuming task. I sat down with fashion editorial and personal stylist Victoria Martin to get her tips on how to avoid taking your whole wardrobe with you in your suitcase and on the key SS16 trends to adopt.

What would you say are this year’s key summer fashion trends?

Summer fashion should always be fun and playful. Winter is for sharp dressing, so don’t take yourself too seriously and use the summer months as an opportunity to experiment with new trends, styles and colours.


My favourite trend this season is the Bardot-style off-the-shoulder tops and dresses. Style icon Brigitte Bardot was famous for her effortless way of wearing this chic neckline, and this flattering trend is the perfect way to flash some flesh whilst channeling those French Riviera vibes. This coral Bardot top from River Island (£25) is a great pick.


We also have lightweight bomber jackets - these are the perfect way to look cool when the temperature drops in the evening. Opt for a metallic finish for a sports luxe take on the trend, some lace detailing to pair with pretty dresses or a silky print to bring your basic pieces to life. I love this one from New Look (£29.99).

Nightwear as daywear is huge this summer. I’m certainly not endorsing wearing onesies to the supermarket, but don’t be shy about showing off your best bedroom attire in public. From silk camisoles and slip dresses with lace detailing, to pyjama-style tops and dressing gown style trench coats, this trend is far more wearable than you would think. Always go for an elegant heel to ensure people know that it’s a boudoir rather than bin-run look you’re going for though.


Finally, practical footwear needn’t be dull this season with a huge choice of stylish, metallic flats available on the high street. Try some high-shine loafers to add a hint of drama to your look and don’t forget to add some jewellery in the same tone to really up the metallic ante. These metallic flats from Dune (£85) are perfect.

How would you recommend that people on a budget can look ‘on-trend’ this summer?

If you’re on a budget this summer, there are still ways of looking trend aware and stylish without breaking the bank. Pompoms are huge this season and can really make even the most basic outfit look on-trend. From clipping a pompom keyring to your bag or grabbing yourself a pair of bargain pompom sandals, this season it’s definitely a case of more is better when it comes to the pompom party. For an even cheaper alternative, pick up some pompoms in your local haberdashery for a couple of Pounds and upcycle some old sandals to give them a new lease of life.


What are your summer holiday capsule wardrobe packing tips?

Before you start any holiday shopping this summer, look at items you already have and try to stick to a colour theme of around three or four colours. Opt for a couple of neutral shades and then add just a splash of colour so that it makes mixing and matching items as easy and effortless as possible. Stick to one colour of jewellery too, whether it be gold, silver or rose gold, in order to keep within your baggage allowance.

A simple dress in a neutral colour that you can throw in your case, that doesn’t require any ironing and that can be dressed up or down will be your best investment this summer. White dresses are the perfect base for having fun with accessories as well as showing off your summer tan. Cut-off denim shorts or a denim skirt are also both hard-wearing and practical capsule items that won’t ever go out of style.

Stock up on basic tops, ASOS online do a great range of basic tops that you can buy in packs. But don’t spend too much money as there’s a good chance white tees will end up discoloured with sun tan lotion. If you only have time to hit one shop in your town centre, make sure it’s H&M - you’ll be able to grab the basics as well as some more trend-led pieces, plus some cheap and cheerful accessories.

Get your holiday basics right and let the accessories transform your look from day to night. For example, a messenger bag is a practical and stylish daytime bag to team with a simple dress to look casual but cute. Swap to a funky clutch bag to immediately make the same dress ready for a night on the tiles.