On My Style Radar: Crochet & Open-stitch Styles for Summer

Happy Monday, mes amis ! This Thursday is the Summer Solstice, which marks not only the longest day of the year, but the official start of summer per the calendar. While I do enjoy the longer days, summer tends to be my least favorite style season. As someone who has always felt more comfortable when I’m a little more covered up, I find dressing for warmer weather more challenging. Crochet and (lightweight) open-stitch summer tops are one way to provide some coverage while still allowing plenty of cooling airflow. Today I’m sharing some of my picks for this season.

Crochet summer tops

Crochet and open-stitch pieces tend to cycle back every summer. And though we may associate them with more of a Boho or “festival girl” style, I’ve been seeing some elegant and more refined styles this season. Here are a few that caught my eye…

Susan B. wears an ivory Eileen Fisher cotton crochet summer top over an ivory tank, and cotton twill drawstring pants.
TOP | TANK (SIMILAR) | PANTS | SANDALS
My sizes: Crochet top – XS, Tank – XS, Pants – XS

I love the beachy look of this Eileen Fisher organic cotton crochet top. It’s SO lightweight, feels like wearing next to nothing. I think this would be a great look for brunch, or a casual apéro gathering on the terrace. And if it warms up, just drape the sweater over your shoulders to add texture to your outfit. It’s available in 4 colors, sizes XXS-3X. And here’s a similar style in a longer length that’s on sale!

If a silk tank is too warm for your climate, this Organic Linen Jersey style is another good choice. Lots of color options, too!

These featherweight twill cargo pants are also perfect for cool coverage, but yes, they’re too long! At the time I ordered them, no Petite lengths were available, so I figured I’d just get them hemmed. But then I managed to grab a pair in Petite Small a couple of days ago, and returned this Regular length pair. They’re a great jeans alternative for summer, so you’ll be seeing more of these in the coming weeks! Sizes XXS-3X. (Petites seem to have limited availability, suggest you keep checking back to see if your size comes available.)

Madewell crochet summer polo top.

Madewell

This crochet polo top is cute, and I think would also look great over a tank dress. Sizes XX-Small to XX-Large.

Varley

Another crochet polo top, this one with shorter sleeves and a sporty-but-feminine look. (Love the contrast detail on the collar!) Also available in Black, sizes XXS-XL. (I’m not sure about this particular top, but other tops I’ve tried from this brand run large.)

Kobi Halperin crochet summer top with floral motif.

Kobi Halperin

Need something a bit more dressed up? Here’s a pretty crochet top with a floral motif at sleeve and bottom hems. (Camisole included.) This top would look great with a maxi skirt or palazzo pants for a summer special occasion! Sizes X-Small to X-Large.

Open-stitch styles

Susan B wers a Madewell open stitch polo cardigan over a silk tank and straight leg jeans, with cutout flats.
CARDIGAN | TANK (SIMILAR) | NECKLACE (c/o) | JEANS | SHOES
My sizes: Cardigan – XS, Tank – XS, Jeans – 27

This open-stitch polo cardigan give you lots of styling options. It’s also very lightweight! Available in this warm beige color and black, sizes XX-Small to XX-Large.

Falconeri

This Italian brand is known for beautiful knitwear. The diamond pattern really elevates this open stitch cotton cardigan.

(If the link opens to the main page, just navigate to “cardigans” and it’s one of the first on the page. Or search for “Diamond Cardigan.”)

Falconeri cotton cardigan with open-stitch diamond pattern.
Talbots open stitch cardigan in cotton-linen blend.

Talbot’s

This pretty open-stitch cardigan is a cotton-linen blend so should be lightweight and breathable. Also available in White.

Ann Taylor

And this classic v-neck cardigan in a cotton blend is available in both Regular and Petite sizes. (This pink color is good for Summers.)

A crochet top or open-stitch knit can add some texture and interest to your summer outfits. If you live or are visiting where evenings are cool (or air-conditioning is on overdrive), they can be just warm enough. And the lightest weight styles can provide both coverage and airflow.

More crochet and open-stitch summer tops…

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14 Comments

  1. As someone who works with fiber, one of my pet peeves is the mislabeling of open work knits as crochet when they are not (sometimes this is done by the manufacture.)The sweater you are wearing is clearly knitted, as are a couple of others that you show. And without getting into the mechanics of the different stitches, a knitted sweater will generally be lighter than one crocheted in the same yarn because of the construction of the stitches. A helpful consideration when choosing a summer sweater.

    1. Hi Ellen, thanks for the clarification. I’ve used the terms as described by brands on their websites.

  2. I love love love all the crochet tops you featured. I’ve managed to gather a few this year as well. Moving from CA to FL was quite a change, in weather! As I too like it be “covered up”, these crochet pieces really work well here and make me feel more put together. I still miss the cooler days and nights of CA.

  3. Wow these are great looking sweaters. I tried that EF open weave and my husband didn’t like it. Despite this (!) I’m trying it again but in the ivory color. I think over the bone tank it would look more ‘of a piece’ and quite nice. Susan, when you get a chance, could you review denim jeans again? I’m finding that the jeans I have had for the last couple of years aren’t comfortable — or — don’t have an elevated style for travel/Europe, etc. Additionally, Annie said that Autumns need a ‘dark’ navy (marine) and many of my jeans have distressed washes. I think I still have an AG Mari style so that’s a keeper, but I look at your EF denim cargos and they look so comfy! Thanks!

  4. Hi Susan,
    Such serendipity. I am sitting here wearing an oversized, crochet, cornflower blue top from Dokotoo (an Amazon brand) as I read your blog. My top just arrived yesterday – it was slow to ship- and I love the look. It is an absolutely gorgeous color – blue with a hint of violet – that is perfect with my medium, warm coloring.
    (I do not wear blue very often because I find it hard to find a flattering shade.)
    You showed us so many pretty, stylish options. Thanks!

  5. All beautiful pieces, is it just me being clumsy, but I worry I will snag an open weave piece on something… do other people have that problem??

    1. Thanks, Elizabeth. Yes, I think you do have to be mindful, and I avoid wearing jewelry that might snag.

  6. LOL! I thought the pants rolled looked absolutely darling and would have worn them like that! You mentioned hemming but Would you have worn them rolled if you hadn’t gotten the petite? I love the whole outfit…one of my favs.

    1. Hi Linda, thanks! If the Petite hadn’t been available, I would have kept these and hemmed long enough to wear cuffed or uncuffed. As it turns out, the Petite is the perfect length to wear either way too.

      1. Susan, I agree with Linda about liking the jeans rolled up. I can’t remember if I’ve ever seen you wearing them that way? I am short, and I get so tired of having everything hemmed.

  7. I’m a fan of Uniqlo”s “mesh” cardigans and pullovers — same vibe, good colors, and only about US$40 each. Size up if you want a slouchy look.