Retro inspiration is everywhere, especially when it comes to summer outfits. There’s something about the sunshine and warm weather that begs us to take to take it back to the past with outfits that were cool back then and still cool now. Grab your shades and pair with some of these outfits that are perfect for summer.
1. Art tees
Van Gogh’s paintings of flowers are undoubtedly iconic in the art world and instantly recognizable. This shirt featuring these flowers and several other paintings is sure to add style to your outfits. The golden flowers contrast beautifully with the deep blues of the other paintings, just like a sunset. Not to mention, pairing with this high waisted jean shorts add that retro flair (especially with the cuffed detail). An oversized fit seems to fit in with the artist’s aesthetic. This outfit is pretty simple, but perfect for a casual summer day consisting of chilling on the patio.
2. Grunge meets floral
Nothing screams 90s angst more than a Nirvana T-shirt. For those who want to display their grunge aesthetic even in the summer, can do so when paired with this floral dress. Even if black is not traditionally associated with summer clothes, this outfit just works. In general, tees like these look great when they are slightly oversized. The silhouette of the outfit just looks that much better, plus it really shows that you are not a fan of playing by the rules. The lightweight skirt is perfect for summer and the slit adds some visual interest. Not to mention the black Doc Martens which truly completes the look. We also recommend a choker necklace and your favorite pair of sunglasses to hide the number of eye rolls you do in a day.
3. Rubik’s cube tee
Lucky for you, no one has to know if you actually didn’t solve the cube. This retro tee looks straight out of the 70s from the font to the red collar. You can really wear this shirt out with anything from skinny jeans to high-waisted shorts as shown here. Since high-waisted jeans are really having a moment in fashion, you will be all set with your favorite pair. For makeup, the red lipstick really pops here and light eyeshadow is subtle but still makes its presence known. For accessories, you can’t really go wrong than Coke in a bottle. Taking a sip on a hot summer day really proves it’s the unofficial drink of summer.
4. Heart-shaped glasses
Sunglasses are not only practical for blocking out harmful UV rays, but also the ultimate accessory for summer outfits. These heart-shaped sunnies are the best choice for retro-inspired outfits. Whether taken from the 1962 film Lolita or the pinup aesthetic from the 50s, they are a go-to pair that looks great with any outfit. While coming in a variety of colors, there is something about the color red that just feels vintage. Make sure your outfit is coordinated with your sunglasses with plenty of pops of red throughout. The cherry and polka dot top is just perfect for a top that is light enough to wear in summer without sacrificing style. For bottoms, red trousers work just as well as your favorite pair of jeans. For shoes, you can dress up a pair of red or white sneakers to go with this outfit. If you are a fan of red, this is the outfit for you to wear while out on the town. Even at night, you will not want to take off these heart-shaped sunglasses.
5. Denim overalls
If you are looking for a simple outfit that doesn’t require that much thought, a pair of denim overalls just might become your best friend. This piece is definitely a throwback to childhood when things were much easier which will definitely make you nostalgiac. Once you have these overalls on, your outfit is pretty much set. A white tee or tank top would make for a great summer outfit that is light and also versatile. A comfortable pair of vintage white sneakers will also make sure you can keep going all day. When the nights start to get cooler, you can always put on a crew neck sweater underneath to keep warm and let your overalls be seen. Retro-inspired outfit or callback to childhood? The answer is yes.
6. Vintage rock tees
Vintage rock tees are about as retro as you can get. You can immediately get a sense of the music of the times and also what people wore to show off their taste. Now, of course, they make for excellent pieces to be worn for a retro-inspired summer outfit. Like rock n’ roll, these tees don’t have to play by the rules. An oversized tee on its own can become its own outfit as it makes a statement all it’s own. Although, it wouldn’t hurt to have some shorts underneath. Rounded sunglasses also give a rocker flair to this outfit. There is no shortage of bands with cool graphics, so you can choose whatever band to represent the next time you head out for cruising with the top down or your next music festival. You might want to give the band you are wearing a listen though.
7. Striped button-downs
Slightly more dressed up than your typical t-shirt, a button-down shirt like this one is a great retro piece to wear in the summer. The material is pretty light so you can still wear it and be comfortable all day long. The stripes are really where this shirt shines with its retro feel. Shirts like these were pretty common in the 90s with the contrasting scarlet, gold, and teal stripes. Because this shirt is pretty lightweight, you can wear a tank underneath for an additional layer. The frayed detail on the shorts also gives this outfit a retro vibe. You can buy shorts with this detail or do it yourself if you want them to be authentic. You can wear this outfit for any occasion whether it’s lying on the beach, dinner with friends, or out late at night.