Courtesy of Miu Miu Spring/Summer 1996

These Minimalist Summer Outfits Inspired By '90s Swim Style

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What coats are to winter, swimsuits are to summer: The season doesn't officially get started until you've put your first one on. Why then, is the coverup always forgotten until the first day you reach for your bikini? Draw inspiration from some of these minimalist summer outfits that double as swim cover ups, brought to you straight from the '90s. Whether you're enjoying some fresh air on the roof of your building or you're actually lounging by a body of water, these foolproof outfit formulas will not only serve you time and again, they're incredibly simple to recreate. After all, simplicity is the linchpin of every minimalists' approach to dressing.

What is particularly striking about all of these outfits, is their dual ability to either temper colorful, playful swimwear, or elevate sleek, classic swimwear into iconic territory. Take for example the Arthur Elgort's photograph of model Carrie Otis elegantly stepping out of a car in a white bikini topped with luxe, matching separates that are so achingly simple she could realistically be both heading to bed or boarding a yacht. Or the playful image of Kate Moss wearing a tropical-print underwire bikini, of which you'll see an abundance this season, balanced by a demure, cropped knit. The best part is that you likely own all of these staples already, and thanks to that recent closet clean out, you know exactly where they are. At the very least, these ideas might inspire you to give your loungewear a well-deserved break.

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Minimalist Summer Outfits: Bucket Hats & Bermuda Shorts

Arthur Elgort / Conde Nast/Conde Nast Collection/Getty Images

Olive tan and mile-long legs aside, Gisele's crisp Bermuda shorts, simple white tee and floppy bucket hat proffer the kind of nonchalance we can all channel right now. Pair with simple slides or sneakers for added comfort.

Minimalist Summer Outfits: Luxe, Coordinated Separates

Arthur Elgort/Conde Nast Collection/Getty Images

If you're feeling extra elegant, opt for coordinated silk pajama pieces, or try a more lightweight linen instead. The pants and button up can also function brilliantly alone, and will likely become regulars in your off-duty rotation. Dial up the '90s revival by finishing the look with a matching stretch cotton headband.

Minimalist Summer Outfits: Textured Knits

Arthur Elgort / Conde Nast/Conde Nast Collection/Getty Images

Once you get past the nostalgia for sidling up to a bar to order an espresso, appreciate the versatility of an open cardigan paired with a bikini. When the breeze picks up or the sun goes down, you'll be grateful you chose something with a little warmth. Whether you're pairing it with a high-waisted jean or a slip skirt, the polished topper adds a little more flair to the look. Plus the exposed-bra trend encourages you wear this into the evening, making it an ideal day-to-night look in the unlikely event you aren't actually at home.

Minimalist Summer Outfits: Breezy Sheers

Courtesy of Miu Miu Spring Summer 1996

Miuccia Prada's mid-nineties collections offer an abundance of inspiration, but the sheer shift silhouettes feel particularly appropriate right now. Go ultra-minimal with a neutral palette, or introduce a pop of color via your sandals or bathing suit. The result is utterly effortless.