Shopping my closet: I’m calling this one my “summer suit”

Menswear-inspired vests are one of summer’s biggest trends, and one I’ve been wanting to try. I’ve always had a thing for androgynous style, going back to Diane Keaton’s quirky ensembles in Annie Hall. Today I’m sharing a linen vest outfit I wore recently and was quite pleased with.

Though we’ve managed to avoid the heat dome that’s currently plaguing much of the country, it has finally warmed up enough that I’ve been “shopping” the summer section of my closet. Even (or especially) on days when I may not be getting out much, I try to dress with intention and put an outfit together. It’s a way of showing up for myself, and really helps my outlook.

A linen vest as a summer outfit “finisher”

This outfit came together kind of by accident. I’d been going for a “Meg Ryan in French Kiss” vibe when I reached for the striped top and baggy pants. It wasn’t bad, but I felt like it needed something else. I grabbed this linen vest and was pleased with how well it coordinated with the pants. So I’m calling this my “summer suit.” 😉

Susan B. wears a casual look with a striped tee, linen menswear-inspired vest, linen pants, gold sandals.

I love to layer, and I thought a lightweight vest might be a workable “third piece” alternative when it’s too warm for a jacket. I’d purchased this one a few weeks ago, and have occasionally thrown it on with jeans and a tee. I’m wearing a Small and were I to order again, I’d size up to the Medium to have the option to (comfortably) button it.

These lantern pants in undyed linen are no longer available in most sizes. But there are several other options in this “lantern” shape. I think the wide-leg trousers in undyed linen could work equally well in this look.

Susan B. wears a linen vest outfit with a classic Breton stripe top and linen pants.

I’m going to be keeping my eyes open in the pre-fall collections for a longer vest or two for transitional season wear.


Here are a few more lightweight vest options to top off your summer outfits…

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  1. Oh my gosh, could anyone be cuter than Meg Ryan in French Kiss?! LOVED her clothes, her hair, and her character in that movie (even if I didn’t feel any chemistry between her and Kevin Kline). I think you’ve pulled off that look really well and love the addition of the vest. Always enjoy your posts!

    1. Thanks! Other than Meg’s characters wardrobe, it was a pretty silly movie, though I did enjoy the scenery (and the “LACTOSE INTOLERANCE!!!” scene…)

  2. I have a short, natural colored, crocheted linen/cotton vest that I bought from J.Jill well over 10 years ago. I find it’s perfect for finishing a simple t-shirt and pants outfit….just like your menswear vests do in todays posts.
    Love your look today…may be a bit too hot for a Georgia summer ( it’s usually 90 degrees or more from mid-June till September)…but would work for early fall here.
    Keep ‘‘em coming! Stilling keeping you and your Mr. in my thoughts ❤️

  3. Such a sharp outfit, Susan! I live vicariously through your posts! Here in the mid-Atlantic, it’s been a shvitz-fest of late…hazy, hot, humid. Linen is a god send! Why did I spend so much time ironing linen back in the day?

  4. Vests are not easy for my body shape so I haven’t really got them in my wardrobe. You, on the other hand, suit them well.

    1. i, too, remember Annie Hall, and buying men’s vests in the thrift shops of Greenwich Village back in the day.I’d love to see this vest and pants with a dimple white, or even navy t shirt. Maybe it’s just that it’s so hot that long sleeves feel oppressive!

  5. I really like your summer suit. It looks light and adds such a nice touch to the pants and shirt.

  6. I’ve really gotten into vests in fall/winter; haven’t found anything for spring/summer yet. This may change, especially since I can’t find a light cardigan that isn’t too hot.