Trash to Treasured’s Tina Abeysekara on how to style summer outfits

Trash to Treasured’s Tina Abeysekara on how to style summer outfits

When it comes to dressing for summer, it’s all about reaching for those garments that will offer ultimate comfort while remaining weather appropriate.

But choosing comfort doesn’t mean you have to skimp on style. There are specific go-to garments and ways you can style an outfit to appear well-dressed in the warmer months.

To make your summer outfits look effortlessly chic, try some of these tips from fashion stylist Tina Tina Abeysekara, of Trash to Treasured.

Trash to Treasured: Tina in flowy dress
Trash to Treasured: Tina in lighter shades

Styling tips for summer outfits

When it comes to styling summer outfits, fashion stylist Tina Abeysekara said she always considers the weather first. It may seem like an obvious point, but the temperature and weather conditions will determine the kinds of fabrics you choose to wear.

“If it is going to be a sweltering day, opt for something in natural fibres such as pure cotton or linen – it is breathable and flowy, and you don’t want to feel too constricted. I also tend to opt for fabrics in lighter shades in summer as darker ones tend to absorb the sun, making you feel the heat more,” Ms Abeysekara said.

The Sydney-based fashion stylist and blogger, who has become renowned for affordable clothing finds that she shares on her Instagram account Trash to Treasured, said she is also a fan of dresses that you can “throw on and go”.

“They make for a sleek and comfortable yet chic look that is pretty much perfect for any occasion. Dress it up or down with your choice of accessories,” she said.

When the weather is warmer, Ms Abeysekara said she opts for clothing in looser fits, such as a tiered maxi dress or wide-legged linen shorts or pants, as they can help you to stay cool and comfortable.

Trash to Treasured: Tina in flowy dress
Trash to Treasured: Tina in matching set

Style trends for summer dressing

For locations that experience hot and balmy conditions in the summertime, a go-to outfit is a light and airy dress that you can easily throw on and head straight out the door, advises Ms Abeysekara.

“With minimal styling, you’re still getting that effortlessly chic look. Staying cool is key when the weather heats up, so picking something lightweight and breathable is ideal,” she said.

For those who love a matching set, this summer is your time to shine. This season, Ms Abeysekara has been particularly enjoying co-ords with floral prints.

“A lot of people can be thrown off by a busy print or even feel almost swallowed by it, but I find buying a matching set is a great way to break up the print while keeping the outfit fun and summery. You can even go bolder and opt for a monochromatic matching set for an eye-catching look that is sure to make a statement,” she said.

Trash to Treasured: Tina in flowy dress
Trash to Treasured: Tina in flowy dress

Finding the perfect summer dress

Finding the right dress for summer weather can sometimes be tricky, but it all comes down to knowing what to look for.

“Linen dresses are very in at the moment and the fabric is perfect for summer while still looking super luxe. Linen dresses can suit all shapes and sizes and can be taken from day to night,” Ms Abeysekara said.

For a dress that is versatile that you could style multiple ways and change up frequently, look for something with a halter neckline, suggests Ms Abeysekara.

“Halter necks allow you to mix up how you style the one item – whether it’s worn as a traditional halter neck, crisscrossed, to one side or even tucked in to create a strapless look, it offers incredible versatility.”

For an easy, chic summer look, she recommends adding some gold jewellery and to tie the gold in further with gold-rimmed sunglasses.

“One item you’ll see me accessorise with time and time again is my thrifted vintage Chanel bag I found in Osaka, Japan. It was exactly the size and vintage I had in mind, so I soon decided this was a treasure I couldn’t leave behind. I carry it constantly and it is still my first and only designer piece,” she said.

Trash to Treasured: Tina in summer shoes
Trash to Treasured: Tina in summer shoes

Shoes for the summertime

When it comes to shoes for summer weather, Ms Abeysekara’s favourites are a pair of mules.

“I find that mules are a great summer shoe as they’re the perfect mix between a sandal and a heel, and can dress up or down any outfit. I’d recommend covering your bases and opt for a mix of staple colours – nude, white and black shoes – then spice it up with a statement pair in a bold, bright colour,” she said.

As we tend to spend more time outdoors during the summer months, it’s important to wear appropriate footwear, but that doesn’t mean you can’t make it stylish.

“White sneakers are a must-have for all wardrobes, they’re comfortable for both commuting or sightseeing and go with virtually anything, whether you’re pairing them with a cute dress or pants or even activewear. I practically live in my pair from Lacoste,” Ms Abeysekara said.

Trash to Treasured: Tina in summer sunglasses

Must-have accessories for summer

If she had to choose the ultimate accessory for summer, Ms Abeysekara said it would be sunglasses.

“Sunglasses are the ultimate summer accessory and can jazz up any outfit. My go-to is gold metal frame Ray Bans and very rarely will you catch me without them! However, there are so many styles out there to choose from including sleek cat-eye frames and oversized frames with coloured lenses which are super trendy at the moment,” she said.

Another key summer accessory that Ms Abeysekara swears by is a pair of statement earrings.

“In the warmer months, I tend to tie my hair back or up in a sleek bun to keep my hair out of my face. Having your hair pulled back is the perfect opportunity to pop on a pair of statement earrings, particularly if the outfit you’re wearing is strapless or off the shoulder. Statement earrings look incredibly chic as they draw focus to the face and instantly spice up any look,” she said.

Ms Abeysekara’s final tip for summer styling is to look for staple pieces that are both comfortable and stylish. She recommends considering pre-loved stores and online marketplaces like Poshmark, where you can find gems and unique items.


Disclaimer: Tina Abeysekara works with Poshmark.

Sharon Green, editor

Sharon Green

Sharon Green is the founding editor of SHE DEFINED.

An experienced journalist and editor, Sharon has worked in mainstream media in Australia and the United Kingdom.

Forever in search of a publication that confronted the real issues faced by modern women, Sharon decided to create her own.