While summer style is meant to be colorful, cool and free-spirited, it can be easy to fall into a tank-top-and-denim-cutoffs rut. To help you combat those inevitable outfit blahs, we asked the top talent behind a few of our favorite retailers what game-changing pieces every should woman have in her wardrobe this season. The takeaway: fashionable flats, unisex separates and head-turning handbags will keep your style game in check through August.
Shopbop Style Director, Elle Strauss
Photo: Vanessa Jackman
Elle's Must-Buy: Birkenstocks
"These Rachel Zoe slides will totally transform any outfit into a fashion-forward look. I love them with boyfriend jeans or something more feminine, like a full skirt."
Elle's Must-Buy: Blue Shirt
"A blue button-down is a classic. For a more adventurous look, wear it with a white t-shirt underneath and keep a couple of buttons closed at the collar."
Elle's Must-Buy: Bermuda Shorts
"Bermuda shorts are huge for summer and black and white tailoring was also everywhere. I love the idea of combining the two trends. For instance, wearing tailored white shorts with a black blazer, a black camisole and this season’s other It shoe: the mule."
Kirna Zabete Owners, Sarah Easley and Beth Buccini
Sarah & Beth's Must-Buy: White Jeans
"These jeans from Frame are white denim perfection. We love the new cropped and frayed silhouette."
Sarah & Beth's Must-Buy: Calf Hair Slides
"In a season of Birks, skates and slides, this pair by Ancient Greek Sandals is our favorite. It's the quintessential summer shoe."
Sarah & Beth's Must-Buy: Fringe Clutch
"Fringe, leopard and scarab come together in this amazing Valentino bag (from one of our most favorite runway shows ever)."
Forward by Elyse Walker Owner, Elyse Walker
Elyse's Must-Buy: Tie-Dye Espadrilles
"Espadrilles the perfect run-around shoe for summer and they go with everything; throw them on with a great dress or a pair of jeans. This tie-dye pair screams beach-chic!"
Elyse's Must-Buy: Mirror Aviators
"Sunglasses are a summer staple and the aviator is a must-own shape. Victoria Beckham nailed it with these tinted blue lenses."
Elyse's Must-Buy: Bright Bag
"The Saint Laurent Sac De Jour is your new everyday bag. I love it in this neon blue color, which goes with everything and is the perfect pop of color you need. Blue is totally the new black for summer."
Barneys Fashion Director, Tomoko Ogura
Photo: The Window
Tomoko's Must-Buy: Luxe Backpack
"For those summer bike rides this Mansur Gavriel backpack is the chicest hands-free option."
Tomoko's Must-Buy: Polka Dot Dress
"Flirty and feminine, polka dots feel just right for summer. For a summer wedding, party or celebration this dress is a standout."
Tomoko's Must-Buy: New Hoops
"You'll fall in love with these hoop earrings once you try them on; the diamond bars actually appear to float under your ears. Something like this lets you add flare to your summer look without adding bulk."
Curve Owner, Nevena Borissova
Photo: Leonardo Corredor
Nevena's Must-Buy: Metallic Bikini
"Nothing can spice up summer like a Lisa Marie Fernandez metallic bikini."
Nevena's Must-Buy: Terry Cover-Up
"We want to live in her terry cover up as well. It's perfect for the beach or the pool."
Nevena's Must-Buy: Summer Jewelry
"Take your beach look to the next level with a body chain or an ear cuff."