I’m not talking about a corporate white button-down shirt that you’ll find on most “what every women should wear” lists. Of course, it can be a button-down shirt if that’s your thing — but it can also be a blouse, knitted top, T-shirt, tunic, or item of knitwear.
White tops can be dressy or casual, and made of either natural or man-made fibres. The shade can be a cool bright optical white, a neutral off-white, or a warm cream. The point is to choose white tops that work well for your lifestyle, wardrobe, body type and sartorial preferences.
I encourage clients to amp up the quantity of white tops in their Spring and Summer wardrobes for ten reasons:
- They provide an effective change from dark tops that we wear so frequently in Winter.
- To my eye, white tops look better than black tops on most complexions.
- They complement the colours that run through blonde, salt and pepper, and light grey hair.
- They make outfits look crisp, modern, fresh, and more warm weather appropriate.
- They complement white, metallic and light footwear.
- They complement pastel and bright wardrobe items better than other neutrals.
- They look fabulous with black, blue denim, pearl grey, olive, and most patterned bottoms.
- White layering tops are an effective and easy lively neutral to wear under dark, bright, jewel or pastel toppers to the office.
- They provide an excellent backdrop to a statement Spring or Summer scarf.
- They are PRETTY. Full stop.
My Spring and Summer wardrobe wouldn’t function without a good assortment of white tops for all the reasons I’ve listed above. I think white tops are magical, and that’s why they’re a wardrobe essential for my style.
I like my white tops best in a bright optical white, but I do also like them in off-white and cream. I do not wear T-shirts, tank tops or knitted tops, and seldom wear basic button-down shirts anymore (although they used to be an essential for my style.) Sometimes I wear a white blouse, but I prefer my blouses in patterns and colours these days. I’m all about wearing soft and comfortable white Spring and Summer knitwear in an assortment of thickness and silhouettes. I wear white warm weather knitwear instead of T-shirts because it’s more insulating, and looks dressier and sharper than a tee. I also find them easy to layer, accessorize, travel with, and launder. I pop a white camisole underneath for extra comfort, and never have problems with items that are too sheer.
I successfully replenished my capsule of white Spring and Summer tops this year. I’m thrilled with the assortment, and it’s working extremely well. I can wear the cream tops into the Autumn too.
Here’s my current collection of white Spring and Summer knitwear. Some are essentials and some are statement pieces. I have multiples of some of the styles, and many are wardrobe workhorses.