Prediction: 8 Summer Trends That Are About to Blow Up

While we're still in the middle of spring, I'm mentally already fast-forwarding to summer. Don't get me wrong—I love to layer up in coats and boots, but I pretty much live for warm-weather style, so summer is where my wardrobe really shines. After all, I grew up in Arizona and live in L.A., so feel like I've become somewhat of an expert when it comes to dressing for summer. So which trends are on my radar and which pieces do I think will be huge in a few months?

Looking to the runways and fashion insiders, it's clear that there are a number of trends that will be big this summer, from padded shoulders and bold colors to chain heels and exposed bras (and plenty more). Ahead, see the eight summer trends I'm predicting are about to blow up, and shop my edit.

Padded Shoulders


(Image credit: @nycbambi)

Get ready to say goodbye to your ordinary tees and hello to padded-shoulder versions. The rising micro-trend is already huge on the street style scene but will be everywhere by summer.

Shop the trend:

Nouveau Aviator Sunglasses


(Image credit: @rosiehw)

Sure, aviator sunglasses have been around forever, but this summer, we'll be seeing updated takes on the classic. Bottega Veneta's sleek hexagonal pair have already been popular with celebs like Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, but we're also seeing other brands coming out with their own take on the reinvented aviator.

Bold Colors


(Image credit: @jacquemus)

Get ready for big punches of color with lots of hues that scream fun. I'm especially drawn to bold pinks as well as sunny shades like yellow and orange. 

Shop the trend:



(Image credit: @cultgaia)

Raffia might be a summer staple, but we'll be seeing it blow up this year. Look for the material in chic market totes, hats, and shoes.

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Bra Tops


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We're already seeing bra tops emerge as a huge trend for 2020, but it will only be picking up steam as we get closer to summer. My favorite way to style them? Underneath a blazer, as seen here from Staud.

Shop the trend:

Wraparound Bikini Tops


(Image credit: @matteau)

Wraparound bikini tops are a trend I've been seeing pop up in swim brands. What I love most about it is that the top doubles as a cool, wearable bra that looks just as chic with flowy pants or a maxi skirt.

Shop the trend:

Heels With Chains


(Image credit: @paciotti)

Chain-embellished heels are the shoe trend that will dominate 2020. Last summer, everyone was pairing anklets with heels, so think of this as a way to breathe new life into that trend. While I'm sticking to slippers and sneakers most days, I can't wait to try these for myself soon.

Short Suits


(Image credit: @thestylestalkercom)

Suiting has been one of the biggest trends in fashion, period, so you better believe that there will be a way everyone will wear suits this summer. Look no further than the shorts suit. It's an outfit I've been embracing for my Zoom calls.

Shop the trend:

Next, see everything that just landed on my personal shopping list.

Associate Director, Special Projects

Kristen Nichols is the Associate Director, Special Projects at Who What Wear with over a decade of experience in fashion, editorial, and publishing. She oversees luxury content and wedding features, and covers fashion within the luxury market, runway reporting, shopping features, trends, and interviews with leading industry experts. She also contributes to podcast recordings, social media, and branded content initiatives. Kristen has worked with brands including Prada, Chanel, MyTheresa, and Luisa Via Roma, and rising designers such as Refine and Tove, and her style has been featured in publications including, Vogue France, WWD, and the CFDA. Before Who What Wear, Kristen began her career at Rodarte, where she worked on assistant styling, photo shoots, and runway shows, and at Allure, where she moved into print and digital editorial. She graduated from the University of Southern California, where she studied art history and business, and currently lives in New York.