Monochrome styling
Low-key summer styling using monochrome. Photo by Zanne Lee (@allthingszannelee)

If you are seeking a style vibe of low-key luxe this summer, consider monochrome – Read on for my tips on how to style with ease.

Summer days call for sunshine colours, floral dresses and lots of boho vibes – I get it, I am with you! However, I am also a fan of keeping it real – the more you make your daily styling appropriate for what you are doing, rather than the time of year – the more you will get what you need from your wardrobe.

If dopamine dressing is not your usual style then I can’t see how this will suddenly be your calling once the sun starts to shine. I personally believe that colourful dressing is a natural styling choice for those that need it; perhaps they need it to make them feel happy or maybe they are a person that needs to stand out from the crowd, but if this is not what you would normally lean into, then I believe suddenly changing to dressing head-to-toe in colour for a few weeks of sunshine will knock your style confidence! And that’s not what your daily style edit should be about.

Summer styling, holiday styling, trying to fit in with those that say they are children of the sun… can make you feel uncomfortable, unsure of yourself and maybe, just maybe, make you feel like you are a little boring.

Well you are not! Summer styling can be uber chic using a neutral palette, consider luxe fabrics, exciting textures or cut-outs to elevate the look.

Here are my tips for low-key luxe this summer

Bend and flex them any way that makes you feel confident about wearing what YOU want this summer.


Try an all-white look

If you are someone that is typically in all-black in the autumn-winter months, why not reverse your styling to all white? You won’t get dirty in five minutes, honestly it’s a myth, but you will have to wash them more frequently if you use fake tanning products or lots of make up.

If you don’t know where to start, buy some white jeans, treat them as you would any other pair of jeans; add any summer white tops you have – don’t worry if you don’t have any white accessories, use straw bags, black accessories or any metallic accessories or shoes that you own, I often mix with gold.

If you wish to explore texture, try crochet or broderie anglaise both scream summer without saying a word.

You also don’t have to go mad on fake tan, especially if this is not you typical thing to do, but consider using a gradual glow cream like Dove, just to warm your skin.



Low-key luxe is making sure your clothes fit right – depending on what you are wearing you may need it to have a loose fit or a correct fit (noticed I didn’t say a tight fit!)

A typical mistake I see in summer, is what they call the buffet dress, I get it’s floaty and keeps you cool, but if your body shape needs the waistline accentuated, like pear or hourglass – you are not doing yourself any favours wearing anything oversized; unless you can cinch it in with a tie or belt.

Wearing a crop top or bodysuit this summer (extra tip: Wear your one-piece bathing suits as bodysuit, you’ll get more wear out of them!) then opt for wide-leg trousers, jeans or the latest boxer shape shorts to balance the look.

When wearing white, buy the best quality fabric you can afford and especially if it’s on the bottom half of you, wear it looser, for the ultimate chic vibe.


Accessories for monochrome styling

Consider textures in your bag like straw or raffia bags to give a summer look. If you pick one of these in a natural colour then instead of having black sandals consider a lovely pair of brown sandals – these neutral accessories will work with a monochrome look or even all-black or all-white – in fact they are great versatile pieces to wear all summer.

I’ve bought these lovely vegan-leather sandals this summer, I have loved them so much, I have just bought the black pair too.


Tan coloured accessories are perfect for summer styling and when it comes to your jewellery, again keep it low-key and simple to enhance the look – gold or silver metals plus pearls or white  beads are all a great way to continue the flow.

Look closely in the photo above, I’ve taken my nails into the theme as well, I thought white nails would look like tippex or get dirty quickly – well I’ve had my pedicure for weeks and my manicure for over a week and these gels are perfectly fine!



Yep, I am not expecting you to spend your entire summer in just these two colours, but you can easily retain this low-key luxe this summer by opting for some ultra chic alternative colour choices.

Alternatives for black

  • Consider Navy; try prussian blue, midnight, indigo or nautical shades or navy itself
  • Consider Khaki; try olive green, dark moss, hunter green shades or Khaki itself
  • Consider Grey; try french grey, gunmetal, Davy’s grey or taupe


Alternatives for white

  • Consider Cream; oatmeal, soft-white, ecru, beige or wheat shades of cream
  • Consider Metallics; goild, silver or rose-gold


Don’t forget nautical styling!

It’s quite a trend for summer 2022, but nautical styling never dates and it’s the ultimate french style glam. It makes for easy weekend and holiday styling too – and you probably have a fair amount of it in your wardrobe already.

Striped Jumpers – chilly evenings or just to tie over your shoulders to add more interest to your look – it’s the perfect way to add texture into your all-white look

Sailor collars – with striped shirts and puff-sleeve blouses, consider options where the detail includes this unmistakeable square collar with a fab bow on the front.

White full-shirt dresses – team them with striped jumpers and chunky sliders for that off-duty but on-duty city look

Cotton blue striped oversized shirts (wear open like a jacket or buttoned up like a shirt) – If you don’t have a blue and white cotton shirt in your wardrobe… well maybe borrow from the hubby’s wardrobe, he will never know!


Adding a third colour

Sometimes you need that extra level for more interest to the outfit. We’ve already talked about adding tan or potentially stripes but a great third option is summer blue denim – it goes well with monochrome and/or an all-white or all-black look.

One of the best investments you can make this summer is a denim shirt – I recently bought mine via Zara for just £17.99 and I wear it more as a jacket than I do a shirt – it’s great for really hot days when you don’t want to expose too much skin. I shall certainly be taking mine on holiday with me!


Need more help with low-key luxe this summer?

I’ve got you covered! Over on Pinterest I’ve created two mood boards just for YOU!

Follow the boards, as I will be adding more over the coming weeks.

Screenshot or pin any looks that you love and that you know you can easily copy.

Summer Monochrome Style Board

Nautical Summer Styling Board





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