The hottest trends for summer
The Island's unofficial start to summer — Bermuda Day — is almost here! And while some of us will be using this long weekend to go through those storage containers of summer clothes and deciding what to keep or throw away, the more eager few probably already started reaching for their shorts and bikinis a few weeks ago.
And it's no surprise really.
Summer is the best opportunity to put your freshly-pedicured foot forward.
Not only is everyone out and about during the fun, warmer months, but it's also an opportune time to ditch those black and grey wardrobe staples and try out some bold new colours and styles.
In honour of the arrival of summer, The Royal Gazette's Lifestyle section asked local fashion professionals to weigh in on what they predict will be the hottest styles for the season. Here's their predictions for what styles will keep you looking sizzling this summer.
Light weight pants and tees:
According to Heather Macdonald, owner of Atelerie, one of the biggest trends for those hot months will be light weight pants and tees.
She said by this time of year people are very ready to take a break from the heavy denim pieces they wore all fall, winter and spring.
“It's hard to know what to do once it gets too hot for you to even think about putting on a pair [of jeans],” Ms Macdonald said.
“Designers have started to create other options of lightweight, elasticated pants in relaxed fits as well as wide leg palazzo pant in linens and prints.
“Always try these on and if the pant is a loose fit aim for a fitted top or cami. “
She recommends that people pair these lightweight pants with a little kitten heel or wedge, which can elevate it to become a dressier look.
Also if you happen to be wearing a printed pant on the bottom, Ms Macdonald recommends that you pair it with a solid neutral top that picks up one of the colours in the print.
Both Ms Macdonald and Lisa Perry, a buyer at Gibbons Company, said maxi dresses would be a popular style this season.
The great thing about these long, flowy dresses is they usually flatter women of all different sizes and shapes and can be dressed up for a special occasion of paired with sandals for a luncheon with friends.
“They are great for the summer to just throw on and go,” Ms Perry explained. “Stripes, and floral prints have held on for another season, and don't seem to be going anywhere fast.
“The maxi dress is the absolute hottest trend. It's not only comfortable, but so stylish, hence why this season the maxi reigns supreme when it comes to sundresses.”
Ms Macdonald said one misconception about the maxi dress trend is that some shorter girls feel they can't wear it because of their height.
Instead she recommends for petite girls to choose a slimmer maxi — where the skirt is not as full and overwhelming — and pair it with a high wedge.
Just be careful though that the bottom of the dress falls just above your toes, she warned.
“Many maxis can double as a day dress (paired with cute sneaker/espadrilles and a denim jacket if you're travelling) or be dressed up with jewellery, a belt and a pretty scarf for a night out on the town,” she added.
Budding fashion designer Kiara Richardson said the high-waisted swimsuit (made popular by stars like Taylor Swift) and the cut-out monokini (seen on celebrities like Beyonce) would be one of the fashion must-haves for the season.
“It's going to be one hot summer and most people will be spending their days at the beach, so having a great collection of swimsuits for the summer season is mandatory,” Miss Richardson said.
“High waisted swimsuits and cut outs are the most popular that I've seen. Stars are sporting these kind of swimsuits, so once someone sees a celeb in something it automatically becomes a trend.”
Miss Richardson said another popular trend she has seen is with lace pieces this season.
The designer said the trend could be worn casually by throwing a lace dress over a swimsuit for a day at the beach.
Ms Macdonald said the dainty and feminine lace trend could also work well for a more formal evening look. “You can never go wrong with cream or white lace in the summer and black lace is gorgeous for a more formal look or transitioning into fall,” she said.
“You can find lace in all silhouettes lined and unlined for beach cover ups. For women who want arm coverage in the heat of summer wear a lace tunic or button down with a skin toned camisole for a very chic, summer look.”
Tribal patterns are also a very cool trend this season, as well as bold, geometric ethnic prints embraced by brands like Mara Hoffman and DVF.
Ms Macdonald said the style has also been incorporated into jewellery or accessories. “Think global touches, rich embroideries, tiers of mismatched fabrics, beaded accessories, geometric jewellery which have a nomadic feel and blending of cultures,” she added.
While on the subject of accessories, local designer Amethyst Richardson recommends that women invest in a great pair of shades for the summer.
Mr Richardson said: “New Vintage eyewear will make an impact to every women's wardrobe for that sophisticated look for this summer, whether it be tortoise shell, oversized round style or the new metal lace cat eye frames.
“They will give protection to your eyes while the sun is out, but the style is also on trend for summer 2014.”
White, blue and ... neons — the colours of the season:
Mr Richardson believes that white could be a popular colour in fashion this summer. He encourages women to try wearing an oversized white men's shirt either under a work suit. Or said they could transform it into a dress by rolling up the sleeves and belting it.
But for those looking for something more eye-catching, why not try neon?
Ms Macdonald said it was a fun colour in the summer for people of all ages. However, the trend could be “a little difficult”.
She recommends that people avoid looking adolescent by using neon sparingly or in a more muted palate.
A more safe and easy shade to try this season might be blue. Navy hues have had a “major comeback”, according to Ms Macdonald, and are softer than traditional black. Electric and cobalt blues are popular these days, while chambray can be seen in everything from shirts to dresses, jumpsuits, pants even hats. “It's great for summer because it has the denim vibe but not all the heaviness and is typically an extremely soft fabric,” she said.
Cropped tops or cut-outs:
If you don't think cropped tops can work with your body type, think again.
Ms Macdonald said when interpreted the right way for the individual, it can be incredibly flattering.
You can pair a crop top with a high waisted pant or skirt so you aren't showing too much skin. “If you're not comfortable baring your midriff, but love the cropped trend wear a crop top/sweater over a simple, solid colour tank maxi dress,” she said.
Or why not try a cut-out style? It's an easy way to to highlight a particular part of your body, like your back, shoulders or hips, without baring too much.
“Know your assets and what styles work best for you,” Ms Macdonald said. “Many stores have personal shoppers who help you figure out what's the best fits and silhouettes and where to accentuate your figure.”
When in doubt ... try accessories:
An easy way to add personality to your look is through adding accessories. “The right belt, shoes and jewellery can completely take a look to the next level,” Ms Macdonald said. “For bold statement jewellery and accessories it's often better to wear a solid, neutral outfit to really show it off. When buying jewellery be sure to try it on.”
She said tear drop shaped earrings and slim chandeliers were universally flattering, while an easy stud earring or clip on earring also works on everyone. “Think about your eye colour and accentuate your assets,” she continued. “If you have hazel or brown eyes, labradorite stone and citrine is beautiful. Those with blue eyes look great mimicking the blue in jewellery or pale pink chalcedony stone. Mother of pearl has a gorgeous neutral lustre that works for everyone, and is a great summer accessory.”