The Summer Essentials Edit
- Words by
- Bibby Sowray
- Photography by
- Eva K. Salvi
- Edited by
- Petro Stofberg
In Partnership With Ralph Lauren
Ralph Lauren’s all-American aesthetic has made the brand one of the most recognisable and loved in the world. The easy-to-wear, preppy pieces blend perfectly with the W. ICONS philosophy of versatile, classic wardrobe heroes that are built on quality and comfort. That’s why we’ve handpicked our favourite pieces from the current collection to create our very own summer essentials edit, full of items that will slot seamlessly into your forever wardrobe, this season and beyond.
Never underestimate the transformative power that a shirt dress can have on your wardrobe. One of the key features of a forever piece is its ability to adapt to numerous occasions and therefore be worn endlessly without you ever growing tired of it. That’s exactly what this style does; perfect for day and night, formal and relaxed occasions – it’s all about how you style it.
Raffia is a texture that returns every summer, so a worthy investment. Its beauty lies in its neutral colour, which allows it to pair with everything seamlessly, while its rustic feel is a great way to dress down more formal pieces to make them holiday-ready. Whether you go for a classic raffia basket bag, espadrilles or even a raffia hat, it’s truly timeless.
Utility is a huge trend this summer, but for us, it's a wardrobe mainstay. The clean lines, pocket details, neutral palette and practicality make for pieces that are suited to a classic wardrobe and work seamlessly all year round. The utility jumpsuit is one such piece. In a soft beige tone, it’s the perfect outfit for summer days when you want to feel a little more covered up but still cool and comfortable.
The handmade feel of patchwork adds an artisanal and nostalgic feel to any outfit, and the soft pastel shades of this shirt make it ideal for summer, paired with neutral shades or denim. Try knotting at the waist like Deborah, or a French tuck for a relaxed, chic look.
There’s no better fabric for summer than linen – light, airy and breathable, it’s comfortable and elegant all at once. A linen two-piece is an easy shortcut to put-together style that can adapt to many settings, from beach to office, with ease. Use accessories to change it up – a smart leather bag and clogs make it work-ready, while beaded jewellery and sandals take it to the beach.
Black leather accessories can sometimes look too heavy in summer, when the colours we wear are generally lighter and softer. Switching out black for tan is a simple but impactful swap. Look for classic shapes with subtle detailing, and match with tan sandals. This bag, from the Polo ID collection, is a perfect example of minimal design that will stand the test of time.
A great wardrobe is built on practicality - you can have hundreds of beautiful pieces, but if they’re impractical, you won’t wear them. That’s why we love wear-everywhere dresses that you can slip on at a moment's notice and will take you anywhere. This bold asymmetric number can be styled up or down with a few easy accessories, taking you from easy daytime to evening elegance with minimal fuss.
Metallic accessories are one of the easiest ways to add interest to simple outfits. Whether it’s a bag, shoes or jewellery, a pop of sparkling gold instantly elevates a look to event-ready status. Ralph Lauren’s signature Pony pouch is the perfect choice, with a classic drawstring closure and elegant slim shoulder strap.
We consider stripes a neutral – it’s a pattern that never dates or goes in and out of style – and a striped shirt is a forever piece you’ll turn to again and again. Opt for a thick stripe for maximum impact and pair with chic wide-leg trousers for a smart summer look. The added bonus? Vertical stripes have an elongating effect on the silhouette.
Everyone needs a classic pair of sunglasses in their arsenal. But there’s no one-size-fits-all style. Every face shape is different, so it’s about finding the style that works best for you and then investing in the best quality version you can. As for colour, a sleek black or tortoisehell frame with gold accents is a classic choice.
A crochet skirt may not appear a timeless piece at first, but believe us, it’s something you’ll return to every summer. The bohemian feel it brings is great for adding an ease to outfits and making more formal pieces holiday-ready.
Mix up your shoe collection with statement two-tone heels. White and tan pair perfectly as both are neutral colours and emphasise sun-kissed skin. Keep the style simple – slim straps and a fine heel looks refined and classic. Now all you need to do is book in for a pedicure.