Editor’s note: For more Style Suggestions covering what to wear at everything from a summer wedding to other holidays, head here.
In just a few short days, that well-known patriotic holiday centered primarily around fireworks, good food and great times will be here. It’s really starting to warm up everywhere, and that presents some tricky scenarios as far as what to wear while keeping cool and still looking good (if you’re curious about other Fourth of July options to wear, head here for last year’s rundown). Fourth of July is another summer holiday that, much like Memorial Day, can offer the potential for situations ranging from ultra-casual to a little more polished. Here’s an outfit that should toe the line between both. And if your holiday plans involve hitting the road, check out this post for accessories to pack, and this post for a primer on your potential travel get-up itself.
The Shirt: Michael Bastian x Uniqlo Polo, $14.90 (Sale Price)
You read that price above correctly. This year’s collaboration between the noted American designer and the fast-fashion outlet has been another fairly successful seller, yet those prices are dirt cheap right now — so you could go a couple different ways with a purchase, from a grey-and-red striped option that nods to the holiday yet also throws off sportswear vibes, to a more straightforward military-style chest pocket number. Heck, at that price you could buy both of ’em. Either way, these polos have a trim fit and aren’t too dressy or casual, whether you’re grilling in the backyard or heading to a nice patio restaurant. If a lightweight jacket is needed, you could throw on a neutral, lightweight (and classic) Harrington style from Ben Sherman US.
The Pants: Mott and Bow Denim, $96
Now, $96 certainly isn’t cheap to drop on a pair of denim when some classic Levi’s go for about half that. However, Mott & Bow denim isn’t a heavy, overly rigid set of jeans that’ll cause overheating if the weather’s too hot. In fact, the brand’s Comfort Denim line offers jeans with 2% elastane stretch built in, for a pleasingly comfortable yet still slim fit. The Crosby in Dark Blue offers a versatile straight cut and a wash that could work across multiple seasons (even better — you can get 15% off your first purchase with the brand here). Tucking in the polo with those jeans is up to you; the Michael Bastian x Uniqlo polos seem to be cut slim enough to work either way. If it’s just too atrociously hot for pants, the Stadium Short from J. Crew Factory mixes a cool chambray fabric, flattering fit and an elastic waistband for ease of movement (potentially of use after wolfing down some hot dogs).
The Belt: Land’s End Club Stripe Elastic Belt, $39 OR H&M Braided Belt in Light Beige, $12.95
Unlike a more typical casual braided leather belt, the Land’s End option leans even more casual thanks to the elastic webbing, while still injecting some preppy style into your get-up. The mixed media option & beige color makes this a belt you could also wear in the spring & fall; conversely, you could go with a more patriotic red striped option. The H&M number also uses a neutral color and some texture to break up an outfit that might look a bit too stuffy with a plain leather dress belt — the incredibly cheap price doesn’t hurt, either.
The Shoes: GREATS Brand Leather Wooster Slip-on, $149
GREATS definitely does get a lot of play on this blog, but with good reason — no brand right now is making shoes with the type of construction they make, for the low price point they offer. Crisp, casual options like the Wilson in White or the Rosen Runner in Navy could also be good pick-ups here for an even cheaper price. The Leather Wooster specifically is a relatively new offering from the brand that can go more casual or a bit dressier because of that sleek, no-laces look. The Cadet (or Navy) shade is perhaps going to be the most versatile choice here, although Nero (or Black) would certainly be equally adaptable. And to check out another way to style the Cargo (or Olive) shade of the Leather Wooster, head here.
The Socks: Richer Poorer Beginner No-Show Socks 2-Pack, $15
When you’re throwing on slip-ons as comfortable and well-made as the Leather Wooster, socks might actually not be much of a worry. However, a solid pair of no-show socks like these Richer Poorer no-show socks offer a layer of protection for your shoes and your feet. That’s especially important if you’re spending lots of time on your feet during the holiday. This pair should be a true no-show, offering that much-coveted, sleek sockless look. The price point isn’t too bad either, and the range of colors means you could pick up a few pairs to blend in with different types of footwear.
The Watch: Stuhrling Original Aquadiver Manta Ray Rubber Strap Watch, $83 OR Skagen Steel Mesh Watch, $165
Just as with Memorial Day, perhaps your Fourth of July plans involve heading to the beach or a body of water; while you don’t want a watch that’s clunky and overly large, you still want something that’s durable and tough — the Stuhrling Original Aquadiver (full review here) stands up to the test and doesn’t look too much like a digital sports watch. On the other end of the spectrum, the Skagen Steel Mesh Watch is super crisp and clean — no wasted design or added touches here. It is a bit pricier, but you get a watch that’s sharp enough to be worn during the week, and eyecatching enough to be worn on the weekends.
The Sunglasses: Randolph Engineering Concorde Flash Lens Sunglasses, $169
This pair was first featured on the blog as this past week’s Style Pick of the Week, and they are lookers indeed (made in America, too!). There’s certainly nothing wrong with sunglasses you already might have, especially if they’re a timeless shape like an aviator or even the resurgent Wayfarer. But these shades as pictured here offer up a vibrant set of blue lenses that complements the theme of the holiday (if you’re into that sort of thing), while providing a style that’s versatile the entire year. The fact that they look like Mr. Bond’s preferred choice of eyewear in Skyfall isn’t a bad thing, either.
While these clothes can help you look good, the most important thing about this holiday is celebrating the occasion with family & friends — that’s something to be kept in mind no matter what you were.
Will you be picking up any new items for the Fourth of July or the summer season in general? What’s your go-to fireworks-watching outfit?