As summer is just around the corner I thought it would be fun to share with you an eclectic mix of my summer essentials! These are a mix of things like clothing, accessories, recipes, things for the home, and more. They are all essentials I own, love and always pull out when the warmer weather hits the midwest. Tried and true favorites!
This post is also in collaboration with my monthly Simply Home Series gals, which you will find linked at the bottom. Make sure and check out their summer essentials! If you missed the previous posts…
February- 3 Decor Textures I Love in Every Room
April- Vintage Lace as Art
So now onto my list of essentials for summer…
1- Flowy Shirt Dress
Every summer for years now I find a new version of the same basic thing and wear it on repeat: a flowy shirt dress! I love how it doesn’t hug too tightly so I can feel comfortable wherever I go, and its flowy and breezy to keep me cool. Bonus points for a good color and style.
This olive colored one I got recently is a very light-weight fabric (rayon blend fabric) that doesn’t cling and looks so cute with a belt too! I got it from Bohme Boutique about a month ago but they are sold out. A few cute flowy shirt dresses can be found here:
2- Purse with Stripes
I’m a lover of stripes. It’s my M.O. in home decor and fashion. So a navy with white stripe purse and cognac leather details? Sold. Reminds me of Hamptons style which is a mix of classy and coastal. I love a larger size for summer so you can throw in extra stuff like baby supplies if going to the park, towels and sunscreen when going to the pool, or just snacks when out and about.
This one is cotton canvas material and I love the attention to detail for durability: the rolled part of the straps, and the faux leather bottom.
Target sold out of this exact handbag, but similar purse/bags for summer can be found here:
3- Turkish Towels
A couple years ago I got tired of toting around cheap, thin, ugly towels to and from the pool all the time, so I decided to search online for a cuter alternative. I found these large Turkish towels and we honestly love them. You have to wash them and dry them completely before use, so that they absorb water the best, but these Turkish towels get better with each use.
They dry my kids off completely, but they also roll up for compact travel. I love that they double as a picnic blanket as well!
Since we won’t be visiting the community pool this summer, I put up hooks outside so they can have their Turkish towels handy when playing in the sprinklers or kiddie pool on our patio.
4- Cotton Hammock
When we came back from Brazil a few years ago, we bought a cotton hammock with fringe while at one of the street fairs. Brazil is known for their durable and comfortable hammocks. Since we don’t have a big covered porch or two trees to hang it from, I got a hammock stand and we love hanging out in the hammock every summer, under a big shady tree.
This kind is made from a cotton blend so it is super durable and is perfect for sleeping in. I noticed Target recently started selling a cute hammock from Joanna Gaines’ line, BUT I found an Etsy store that sells cotton hammocks with fringe straight from Brazil for the same price or cheaper than you can find most places in the States. And shipping is free! Check out their hammocks HERE.
5- New Swimsuit
At the beginning of every summer I try to phase out an old swimsuit and buy a new one. This allows me to make sure I have a suit that fits my current body so I have no excuse to not play in the water with my kids.
I’ve been eyeing this particular leopard print one for about a year now, as I saw it sold at a couple different online boutiques last summer and several friends looked so cute in it. So I bought one and guess what? It’s cute on me too! I think this style looks good on anyone. The pattern is fun but still neutral. I love the low back, the ruffle straps, and the full coverage bum.
One thing I love to do when going to the pool or the beach, is to accessorize juuuust a little. I almost always wear big earrings and a bracelet. That way I can throw on shorts or a cover-up and still look put-together if I need to run into a store or grab something to eat.
Everyone should own a cute black suit, whether its a one-piece or two piece. This is a mix-and-match suit I have from last summer but it still looks good one me, and I always have some version of this swimsuit. The high-waisted bottoms hide my postpartum pooch a bit, and the flutter top is flattering.
6- Tanning Mousse
This one might not be what you’d initially expect as a summer essential, but hear me out! As I’ve gotten older I’m more and more mindful of getting too much sun. It causes more wrinkles and sun spots making me look older. So to prevent too much sun exposure but still look “healthy” in the summer with a sun-kissed glow, I like to use a tanning mousse.
The trick is always finding a quality one that doesn’t make you look orange. I’m always quite wary of tanning lotions or mousses unless they come highly recommended. This Loving Tan 2 Hour Express Tanning Mousse is used and loved by a few different beauty influencers/ makeup artists that I’ve followed for years and trust. I got it for Mother’s Day and it was SO easy to apply with the mit (a MUST) and after my first application I had a tan that looked natural and wasn’t streaky. The black beauty blender I use to apply it on my face so I don’t get too much and I can blend it on strategically (where the sun naturally gives me more color).
7- Tomato Salad That Tastes Like Summer
Fresh tomatoes and cucumbers will always taste like summer to me, so I wanted to share with you the tomato salad that I make quite often and serve alongside any BBQ meal, or rice and beans, or stroganoff….pretty much anything! It’s the perfect summer side if you love tomatoes. My parents even ask me to make it for them for lunch when they come to visit!
Check out the recipe HERE.
8- Lightweight Throw Blankets
The last thing on my summer essentials list is lightweight throw blankets. I pack up my faux fur or knit blankets and pull out the cotton with fringe throw blankets. They are perfect to throw over a couch before the dog jumps up, the are warm but not too hot for summer evenings, and since they are easily thrown in the wash with the other laundry (and clean up so well), I don’t care if the kids take them outside if we are roasting marshmallows, or if they want a picnic in the yard.
As you can see, I love stripes and these are blankets I’ve collected over the years so they aren’t offered online anymore. I always look for ones that look cute when draped, so I get ones with fringe. You can find cute cotton throw blankets here:
I hope you enjoyed this fun post about my collection of summer essentials! What’s on your list of summer essentials?
Be sure and check out my friends’ posts below!