I Try Not to Buy New—5 Summer Staples I Pull Out Every Year


Bianca Foley is an influencer and sustainable-fashion expert who we follow closely because she’s super skilled at bringing together style and more conscious ways to consume. From her amazing second-hand pieces and her inspiring ways to rewear clothes through to her thoughts around rentals, alterations and new sustainable brands, Foley is our go-to girl both via her Instagram (@biancaffoley) and the podcast she co-hosts, Sustainably Influenced. For the next three months, she’ll be sharing her intel with you, starting with her journey from a self-confessed shopaholic to a more sensible shopper.

Summer is here, and I just know I’ll be wearing my favourite pieces on rotation. 

This is the final piece in my series about capsule wardrobes, and what better way to finish it off than to talk all about summer staples? I’ve spent my entire adult life looking forward to the great summer wardrobe switchover. It’s a ritual for me—out with the chunky, dark winter clothes and in with colourful, cheerful and lightweight summer options. I find that it always comes at a time when I’m starting to grow a little bored of my wardrobe, so once I unpack the boxes of all of these (old) goodies, it’s as if I’m seeing them for the first time all over again.

I have so many pieces that I love, especially in the dress department, but there will always be those key pieces that come out year after year. If you don’t already own these pieces (chances are slim, I know), then I’ve included current-season suggestions for you below. However, as always, I encourage you to shop mindfully.

In the summer lead-up, all I can think about is taking a holiday and sipping on something delicious and frozen! I adore floral prints in summer (groundbreaking, I know). What’s better than wearing something flirty and floral in the sun?

Rely on a relaxed fit on the hottest summer days. 

This cut is so flattering. 

Another beautiful floral print courtesy of Never Fully Dressed. 

If you read my first piece, you’ll know how much I love a slip dress. They are always the first item I pack when I’m heading on my holidays. They’re a great base for an outfit, and they can be dressed up or down in a flash. In the summer, I also tend to whip out my stash of slip skirts and style them with shirts and camisoles.

Monochromes are so easy to style. 

This slip dress in punchy pink can be worn for day or evening. 

This is a real stand-out piece. 

Every time I look at this dress, I hear the TikTok sound bite, “Did you just say you don’t like the colour pink?” A bright colour-block dress is key in my summer capsule wardrobe. I got this dress three summers ago, and not only is it my favourite piece in my wardrobe, but it’s one of the most rented pieces in my wardrobe, too!

You can rent my exact dress. 

For a colourful summer outfit, look no further. 

This figure-hugging Staud dress is the perfect pop of colour. 

I love bold colours and prints in the summer, and with dopamine dressing being a major 2022 trend, you can’t get bolder or more beautiful than a gorgeous candy-striped piece.

This floaty style adds an airy feel for warm days. 

I love these pastel hues. 

How cheerful is this?

My wardrobe is never without a denim skirt. I bought this one about six years ago from a fast-fashion brand and have worn it every year since. Denim, like a fine wine, gets better with age, so the longer you keep it, the better it will look. 

Denim midi skirts are big for summer 2022. 

A great pair of denim shorts will come in handy every year. 

I love the raw hem to add a relaxed feel. 

Up Next: This Is The Most Useful Item You Can Buy This Summer

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