In my experience, linen is one of those fabrics that gets a bad rap. My theory is that there are a lot of people who hate ironing (I mean, fair enough), and as a result, don't understand just how chic it can be. Other than its propensity to crease easily, I also think it's often associated with a kind of old-fashioned or dated hippie style, so people fear it might age them. I can see why: Flowing, shapeless outfits hardly make you feel streamlined and polished. But the latest linen trend I've spotted on the high street couldn't be further from that.
Style Notes: Freddie Harrel wearing a linen striped dress paired with contrasting accessories.
There are smart sleek shirtdresses in animal prints that are great for a wedding guest or even the boardroom. There are boxy shirts that come with belts to tie around the waist to give your figure definition. Then there are beach-ready dresses that will work as a cover-up by the pool but when paired with heels are the ultimate holiday evening look. And that's before I've got onto the jumpsuits—there are so many that I had to cut down to just a couple. I've even spotted a '90s-style LBD that's suitably sassy but could work nicely for daytime with a white T-shirt layered underneath it.
Style Notes: Proof that linen can be creased and chic.
If I still haven't persuaded you, maybe consider this: Linen is not only one of the most sustainable fabrics to buy, but it's also the ideal fabric for summer. It's lightweight and thanks to it being more loosely woven, it allows heat to escape better. And if you're worried about the creases? A bit of crumple in your outfit adds to the charm (if anyone asks, you've just jetted in from some Greek island). So, trust me when I say these 18 grown-up linen pieces are the ones I'm shopping right now.