I'm Not Really Shopping, But I'm Tempted by These 9 Practical Summer Items

Like most people at the moment, I am being very cautious with my spending and certainly don't want within my role as a fashion editor to promote buying anything throwaway or needless (for both financial and sustainable reasons).

With every story I write, I'm always looking to feature items that have longevity and will outlive the rapid trend cycle that can make certain items dated after mere months. For summer, there are a few basics in particular that I would like to add to my own wardrobe, as they are timeless but not so plain that they could be considered boring.

They are also all practical and things you can wear at home, on a balcony or in the garden and not feel too dressed up when you have nowhere to technically go. Personally, I keep wearing linen shirts, comfortable shorts and throw-on dresses for my walks around my corner of London. If you feel you might be missing some summer basics in your wardrobe, and are struggling to know what to wear in this heatwave, keep scrolling for the nine practical items you can rely on year after year (whether it's a lockdown summer or not). 

1. Sleeveless White Shirt


(Image credit: Marissa Martins)

This is the one summer item I have bought myself this year. Opt for light cotton and linen fabrics in white and beige hues. 

2. White Tennis Shorts


(Image credit: Handinfire)

Tennis shorts have become an unlikely trending item this summer and look amazing with just a white T-shirt or shirt. 

3. Linen Shirt


(Image credit: SmythSisters)

If you want something easy to wear but polished enough for a work call, look no further than a linen shirt. 

5. Bucket Hat


(Image credit: Alyssa in the City)

Bucket hats might not be for everyone, but their practicality is undeniable. SPF dressing at its best.

5. Flip-Flops


(Image credit: Brittany Bathgate)

Thanks to The Row's mega-popular Ginza flip-flops, this is the trending sandal for summer 2020. Once the skin in-between your toes has adjusted, they're really comfortable too. 

6. Tote Bag


(Image credit: Lucy Williams02)

A chuck-it-all-in tote bag is perfect for grocery runs and carrying supplies to the park. 

Crinkle Bikinis


(Image credit: Nicole Ocran)

Crinkle bikinis in one block colour are a simple choice but a little more interesting than a completely plain fabric. 

Tank Top


(Image credit: Lucy Williams)

As many of us are sticking to practical staples right now, the tank top has had a sharp resurgence in popularity. 

Throw-On Dress


(Image credit: Style Idealist)

The throw-on dress is one of the easiest items you can wear in summer. Opt for light fabrics and loose silhouettes.

Next up, see our guide to the key trends for spring/summer 2020.

Emma Spedding