Here's How to Wear Your Black Staples All Summer Long

The thought of wearing black clothes in the summer probably fills most with sweaty dread. But ever since we discovered that it's actually better to wear them in the summer (the colour absorbs heat, which is more cooling than white garments), we've been feeling pretty smug about our dedication to a near-gothic wardrobe. 

It's not that we don't like bright hues; it's just that darker clothes tend to be a go-to in the UK, what with all that rain and very few very hot days. So what do you do when you have a lot of favourite black pieces but you don't want to look like that moody teenager who's been forced to go on a family holiday?

Essentially, this is all about wearing the right fabrics—leather is pretty much a no-go (you don't want to end up in a leather pants situation à la Ross Geller). Anything too heavy or clingy is going to make you look and geel uncomfortable, so instead opt for cotton, linen in lightweight finishes such a super-summery broderie anglaise, and wear them with your favourite chunky black heels. Don't be afraid to flash a bit of shoulder or leg either to really ensure that your outfit is summer-ready. 


Collage Vintage

British Vogue's Sarah Harris has often been seen wearing jet-black pieces in the height of summer.

We're not the only advocates of the darker summer wardrobe. Super-chic designer Catherine Quin—who always makes sure everything in her collection comes in black—is also a fan of wearing black in the heat and says, "The ease and effortlessness of wearing all black work well with the laid-back feelings of summer. What could be chicer than a black slip dress on the beach?" We couldn't have put it better ourselves.

Of course, the fashion set isn't immune to this way of thinking and dressing either, with many opting for black summer dresses and pool slides when attending late-summer shows instead of pretty florals and delicate strappy heels. We've hunted down some of the most summery looks that allow you to wear your favourite items in your closet. 

Scroll through our gallery for outfit inspiration and where to buy their looks.

Rule #1: Slides and slips are the best of friends.



Vogue's Sarah Harris isn't going to let a few rays of sunshine disrupt her penchant for black. Instead, her cool, silky slip dress is perfect for showing off her summer tan, and those slip-on mules help take what is a classically dressy piece down a notch.

By itself or with many layers the slip dress is still going strong for spring/summer 2017

These are even acceptable to wear in the office. 

Rule #2: Don’t be afraid to break out your black lace.



Sheer fabrics rule when the temperatures soar, and that doesn't mean black is out of the picture, especially as the underwear-as-outerwear trend continues to gain momentum. Experiment with layering up grungy pieces over more feminine basics for a cool effect.

Tulle is everywhere right now but £22 isn't going to break the bank when you don't love this trend anymore. 

Did you know that & Other Stories do gorgeous underwear? 

Audrey Hepburn vibes a plenty with this pair of black sunnies. 

Rule #3: Have fun with layering.



Hands up, who has ever seen Google's Kate Lanphear wear anything but black? Make like the former editor and stick with your preferred colour come sun (and, erm, rain and shine). We're taken with her approach to easy layering, which sees her arms laid bare and skinny trousers paired with a wear-anywhere dress.

You'll keep these in your wardrobe for a long time. 

Ideal for wearing in layers or with trainers. 

Ideal for holidays when you don't want to wear sky-scrapper heels. 

Rule #4: Chunky heels and a floaty dress always work.



Daria Shapovalova strikes the balance between dark and light wonderfully here, dark being her all-black attire, obviously, but her floaty chiffon dress means she can get away with something stompier in the footwear department. Channel your inner Daria with a frock that features an eye-catching print.

Easy to wear and keeps your hands free when it's warmer outside.

When winter hits you can just pair with socks or tights. 

Rule #5: Keep lengths short and sweet.



A surefire away of avoiding looking too wintery is to show some skin. As we all know, that means legs or décolletage but never both, so we're taking heed of Maria Kolosova, who added chunky buckle sandals and a vintage-looking satchel to her short dress to keep her look on the right side of casual.

Beat the heat with this mini dress. 

Another cool pair of sandals to wear with jeans too.

A.P.C always delivers when it comes to chic and simple handbags.

Rule #6: Ankle boots are always on the menu.



This may not be a newsflash, but may we suggest cowboy-inspired boots like model Marine Deleeuw's? If they're good enough for desert life…

Cowboy boots are about to be everywhere. 

Another tulle skirt that's ideal for summer weather but still comes in black.

Want to shop more ankle boots? Discover the best styles for the new season.