How To: Boho Vacation Fashion Styles for Summer
How to pack Boho Fashion Styles for your Summer Vacation, without Overpacking!
The time for summer travel is finally here, and, if you're anything like me -
your wanderlust spirit is pining for the many destinations that await you. Nothing beats the rush of an adventurous summer, infused with care-free travel, getting lost in the essence of released inhibitions, free wheeling and feeding curiosity with exploration.
In order for you to truly maximize the fast-paced months of summer, it is imperative that you have a vacation worthy wardrobe that is convenient, yet playful and alluring, and as care-free as your spirit. Let your feminine Boho energy be your wardrobe’s muse this season and let me help you to select some incredibly chic styles that are totally customizable to reflect YOU.
The best thing about summer clothing is that it is lightweight, making it easy to fill a suitcase without exceeding burdensome or costly weight limits. When it comes to Boho fashion specifically, one of the most captivating elements is that the summer styles are so effortless, yet look intentionally cohesive. A few pieces can be worn in multiple ways, leaving plenty of room for souvenirs in your suitcase.
Without further ado, let’s dive in to my top 5 Boho Vacation Fashion Styles for Summer that are chic, body lovin’ and perfect for the beach, resort, road trip, cruise and stroll along majestic cobblestone walkways. By the end of this blog, you’ll be running out the door with only a few outfit essentials and your polaroid, fantasizing about the perfect Instagram-able kodak moments to come.
My Top 5 Recommended Efficient and Timeless Boho Summer Fashion Styles for your Vacation:
First up, is the Maxi Dress
Oh, the maxi dress. Whether you are a Boho style virgin, or have become a Boho style guru, the maxi dress is a stunning Boho essential for your wardrobe. How many adjectives can be used to describe the maxi? Ladies, let me count the ways:
…and the list goes on.
I can think of nothing that makes me feel more confident or sexy than a maxi dress. The maxi dress is, in and of itself, an outfit, designed for elegance and simplicity. It can be paired with other layers, including a denim jacket, vest or cardigan, or accessorized with a wide-brim hat, sunglasses & statement earrings or necklace.
Though I would not coin Christian Dior as a Boho fashion designer, I am honored to use his term, “A-line” to describe the silhouette of the maxi dress. The maxi is fitted around the bust and waist, beautifully accentuating the upper body, and flaring slightly at the hips. A-line style dresses are incredibly figure flattering for many body types. Due to its figure flattering design, combined with its ease and simplicity, the maxi-dress continuously appeals, which is why we see it trending year after year.
Don't be afraid to wear a strapless maxi dress as a skirt!
As the fashion industry continues to modernize, the maxi has become available in a multitude of colours, patterns and fabrics to suit nearly every style personality. Whether you prefer spaghetti straps, wide shoulders, open backs, cut out waist or even leg slits there is a maxi dress for YOU. The maxi is sold by nearly every female fashion retailer during the spring and summer months; It will take no time at all for you to find one or two that reflect YOU!
Next on the list, an ode to Denim
We all have that one pair of jeans, without which we could not live; The pair that has developed the perfect worn in shade and comfortable stretch, yet still looks great with everything and takes you from daytime errands to girls’ night out. For the summer lover, I know that denim also exists in your wardrobe in the form of shorts. If you don’t already know, I would like to clarify that Denim shorts are TOTALLY Boho!!!
Why, exactly, is denim Boho?
Well, denim has been a staple material in the fashion industry and was incredibly popular among the hipsters of the 60s and 70s. Many individuals would customize their denim with rips and tears to create edgy looks. The modern development of intentionally distressed, tattered, high waist and torn denim is really a result of the vintage customization, therefore bringing a retro essence to modern fashion.
If you are a sustainable and eco-conscious fashionista like me, I’m excited to report that you do not need multiple pairs of denim shorts - one pair goes a long way, because they are so versatile and can accompany many staples already in your wardrobe. A few examples of how to wear your denim shorts include over swimwear to the beach, under a high-low maxi dress, with a kimono, with a fringe or faux fur vest, with a tee, tank or crop, and even a denim jacket. To make my denim inspired outfits more unique, I prefer to wear mine with ankle boots or heeled wedges, even in the summer. Although more urban than Boho, a white pair of sneakers can also be added for a cute “Boho in the City” style.
For a really vintage and country aesthetic, you can pair a long sleeve denim top with denim bottoms, however, if you are going to wear denim on denim, I highly recommend pairing different shades (i.e., a light wash with a dark wash). Personally, I am not a fan of denim on denim (though the Country song is totally fun), but I have seen it done well…AND…if denim is your thing, then by Golly, just do it!
Denim shorts, knotted top and ankle length kimono - Killer!
Photo source: styleoholic
With respect to my comment above regarding sustainable shopping, to help better preserve our planet, I would suggest sourcing genuinely vintage, pre-loved denim from a consignment shop, opposed to purchasing brand new, fast fashion, intentionally distressed denim shorts. Not only would your end result be a pure throwback, you would be doing a good deed…and saving money!!
Third on my list is the Romper
When it comes to the Romper, I have four words: Boho Chic in Minutes!
For time saving, effortless fashion, the romper, much like the maxi, is a must have this summer! Available in a variety of colours and patterns there is sure to be a romper on the market that pairs perfectly with your style personality.
One feature I absolutely love about the romper is that it is designed to fit virtually every body. Six years ago when I was wearing a size 2x, peplum dresses and rompers were my go-to.
Now, at a size medium, peplum dresses and rompers still remain two of my favourites. Rompers and peplum cut dresses, albeit different, are both designed to be fitted at the waist and wider at the hips, accentuating all the right curves. Ladies, do you know what that means? You guessed it…feelings of CONFIDENCE, which, we all know, I adore about fashion!
Another great aspect of the romper is that it is more ideal for shorter women than a maxi. I have some customers who, rightfully, complain about their inability to wear maxi dresses because of the length vs their height. There have recently been some improvements with the maxi, with some designs now being more midi (aka shorter in length), and there are even high-low maxi dresses, meaning the dresses are shorter in the front and longer in the back. However, even with that, the overall length is still awkward for many and the general consensus remains that maxi’s are inconvenient for shorter women. Rompers on the other hand sit above the knee and, therefore, appeal to more body types, though I do know the length of the torso can also be a game changer here. Oy vey – why does fashion have to be so complicated?
Extra fashion tip #1: rompers are stellar pieces for layering. Wearing your romper over nylons or leggings and adding long sleeve tee’s under or, crop sweaters over, makes an off the shelf design more playful and tailored to match your unique style. It also means that you have multiple options for styling one base piece of clothing.
Here is a combo from the Boutique that I favour in the spring and fall:
I pair our Tropical Print Romper with the Faith before Fear crop sweater, a pair of nylons and black floral army boots. And, of course, gold hoops. I feel it really gives off a vintage punk energy but is still modern and playful. And then, when summer rolls around and I’m feeling ultra feminine, I prefer the Tropical Print Romper on its own, with a cute pair of heeled wedges and a clutch or crossbody purse.
Speaking of hoops and accessories, jewelry is a key component for designing your Boho summer vibe, which is why it is next on my list.
Ok, my Boho fashionistas. It’s time to be honest with yourself and with me….
How many of you are guilty of having a jewelry box that is bursting at the seams, making it impossible to narrow down a few essential pieces for summer? For me, the verdict is…
When piecing together your customized head-to-toe look, jewelry makes a bold statement and is alluring because it draws your essence into your outfit. For example, if you are pairing a bright maxi dress with a bulky and bright necklace, you are likely a vibrant individual who loves to stand out in the crowd. I love women who are unafraid to make bold statements with their fashion because it is a sign of confidence and acceptance of self, which is what my entire vibe is about!!
On the other hand, if you are wearing moderate stud earrings with a pair of denim shorts and lose tunic, belted at the waist, I would suspect you are more neutral and easy-going, radiating chill vibes and a willingness to go with the flow.
Is there a type of jewelry that you gravitate to more than others?
For me, at 36 years, my go-to statement jewelry is a large gold hoop earring. I absolutely love the simple drama (if that is even a thing and not just a juxtaposition?) and vintage throwback. Quite simply, hoops are just part of who I am and help me to be confidently me. I hope you have a statement piece that is you.
So, if you are like me, you are a woman of convenience, who loves to keep it together, but in as little time as possible – amiright? As a result, I have the following suggestions that can help make packing more efficient and diminish some of the trauma of having to narrow down all your favourites in the jewelry box:
- Stick with your most neutral-colored and solid metal pieces (gold, silver, rose gold, grey or black) so that you can wear the same jewelry multiple times with different outfits. This will save space in your suitcase, and keep every morning fast-paced because you won’t have the opportunity to over think what colour or style to pair with your outfit each day.
- Pack two pairs of earrings to rotate - a small, subtle pair for adventures, and a larger, more dramatic pair to enhance the drama for dinner or the disco.
- Avoid extra rings as they can be tedious and are easy to lose transitioning between pool, beach, resort and adventure tours.
- Pack jewelry, especially bracelets and necklaces, that have convenient closures, or that stretch around your hand or head. Especially if you travel solo. There is nothing more frustrating than losing valuable travel time because you are fighting with clasps.
- Keep your most valuable jewelry at home so there is less chance of loss or theft.
Some excellent examples of convenient Boho jewelry include black or white feathered earrings, cuff bracelets, stretchy beaded bracelets and beaded necklaces. You might also want to pack a headband or two, in case your destination is gruellingly hot and its impossible to maintain a straightened or curled do.
Bohemian Beach Boutique Boho Chic Bracelets
Bohemian Beach Boutique - Vegan Grey Wrap Bracelet with Magnetic Closure
And last but not least -
My number one Boho defining fashion item ideal for summer is the Kimono
A true reflection of the 60s, the Kimono, with its whimsical, free-flowing cut, embodies the care-free spirit. Patterns and fabrics used for the kimono have become so diverse and modern, but the Kimono itself remains a timeless fashion staple.
Downright fun, flirty and loose fitting, a kimono can be paired with damn near anything and worn during any season; Versatility is an understatement when it comes to the kimono. The diverse fabrics, from light chiffon to heavy cotton, means you can find a kimono on the market for literally all four seasons. Moreso, the Kimono is now designed with such a diverse selection of patterns including chevron, Aztec, floral, stripe, paisley and solid colours.
Do you know what that means??
Not only is the Kimono figure flattering, but there is bound to be a pattern that reflects your personal style AND, when worn, becomes the statement of your outfit. Sometimes, with a Kimono you don’t even need to add another accessory. If you do, I would recommend no more than a large pair of earrings, a purse and, if you desire a fitted look, a belt at the waist.
Because the Kimono is so lightweight, it makes an ideal travel companion; If you plan your vacation wardrobe in advance, one kimono can accompany multiple outfits…and even serve as a swimsuit cover for a day at the beach. As mentioned above, the Kimono pairs with damn near anything. So, you can pair with leggings, jeans, shorts, dresses, swimsuits…the options are endless!
For the fall and winter, I love to sometimes switch it up and substitute the kimono with a poncho, which, essentially, has the same effect, but is closed instead of open in the front and drapes over the arms.
If you do not currently have a kimono in your wardrobe, I highly recommend you get out and try some on. If you are used to a more fitted look, a Kimono might seem bulky and unflattering at first. Typically, kimonos are box shaped, having ¾ length, wing-like, sleeves, also known as Belle sleeves, and are designed to fall around the hips. That said however, there are also ankle length kimonos and kimonos with full sleeves, that sometimes cuff at the wrist. Do some research, play around and try on different styles to find the cut that best flatters your personal style.
My Final Thoughts
Don’t over pack!! Boho fashion, much like the lifestyle is simplistic. Let the textures and layers of a few staple pieces make a statement. If you pack one maxi dress, one romper, one kimono, one pair of denim shorts, two neutral tops, 3 or 4 pieces of jewelry, one denim jacket or vest, a bathing suit with two or three styles of footwear, I assure you that you will have ample combinations to style a multitude of Boho chic outfits that are feminine and fun!
Extra fashion tip #2: If you prefer a real hands free travel experience, I recommend a small purse, like the Boutique’s Sophia hand-woven mini palm bag, with a long strap. Simply place the strap around your waist and tuck any excess strap in to the purse itself. Voila – an instant and stylish fanny pack!
Budgeting for your Boho Summer Fashion Wardrobe
One element I have not yet touched upon is budget, and that is because all of the wardrobe essentials I have discussed here are available through many retailers from thrift shops and department stores to local fashion boutiques and high-end boutiques. So, yes, ladies, I will wrap up this blog with the best news: you can design the ideal summer vacation Boho wardrobe on any budget – boom ya!
I hope you have been inspired to narrow down a few essentials that may already exist in your wardrobe so that you can combine ample outfits and still maximize your space and time for adventure. If you want to experiment with some new pieces, I highly encourage you to source second-hand items or purchase from retailers who promote slow fashion. Be sure to purchase pieces that you intend to wear multiple times to reduce fashion waste and help preserve our planet.
Stay beautiful+UNCONVENTIONAL and know that you are loved at Bohemian Beach Boutique!
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