Try This: White Shorts + Vans

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While I’ll happily wear white jeans year-round, white shorts — to me — feel like the ultimate sign of summer. They’re a piece I don’t often bust out until my legs have had a little touch of sun, and they have a carefree, playful vibe — almost devil-may-care.

Am I going to eat this ice cream cone in these white shorts? Yes. Yes I am.

Because I’m wild like that.

Naturally, white shorts, like Sperrys and cable-knit cardigans, tend to skew preppy. And while I’m not opposed to preppy pieces, my personal style is a little messier, a little more tomboy. Definitely more undone.

So when wearing white shorts, I’m always looking for ways to offset their inherent preppiness. And my favorite method, year after year?

Classic, checkered Vans.

Naturally, white shorts, like Sperrys & cable-knit cardigans skew preppy. So I’m always looking for ways to offset their preppiness. My fave method: classic, checkered Vans

sweater (s) | shorts (27) | Vans (‘Comfy Cush’ version) | bag (and similar)

Cute, Casual & Not-Too-Preppy: White Shorts + Vans Slip-Ons For Summer

White shorts and Vans have been the perfect pair to nail that carefree-but-not-too-preppy vibe I’m going for. Even when I pair the combo with otherwise preppy pieces (chunky knit sweaters, a striped tee, for goodness sake) the Vans calm it all down, dahling.

I’ve recently upgraded to Van’s new ‘Comfy Cush’ version of their classic slip-ons, and while that extra bit of cushioning doesn’t feel like a lot, it IS exactly what my aging feet desperately needed. The comfy cush Vans have been a huge improvement over the classic pair.

Summer Outfit 1: White Shorts + Vans + Striped Top

I've recently upgraded to Van's new 'Comfy Cush' version of their classic slip-ons, & while that extra bit of cushioning doesn't feel like a lot, it IS exactly what my aging feet desperately needed.

tee (6) | shorts (27) | Vans (‘Comfy Cush’ version) | similar Clare V. (or J.Crew) | watch

I’ve been wearing this old St. James tee, picked up in France in 2016, when we took the kids to Normandy Beach. It’s basically perfect, and I haven’t even bothered looking for a long-sleeve striped tee since. (I also roll the sleeves and wear it short-sleeved as well.)

I've been wearing this old St. James striped top, picked up in France in 2016. It's basically perfect & I haven't even bothered looking for a long-sleeve striped tee since.

tee (6) | shorts (27) | similar Clare V. (or J.Crew)

While I’ve owned many pairs of white shorts, this particular pair from FRAME is, perhaps, the most feminine. The rise is a higher rise, and the waistband has interesting detail. The whole result is rather retro, and wildly feminine (even with Vans).

While I've owned many pairs of white shorts, this particular pair from FRAME is, perhaps, the most feminine. The rise is a higher rise & the waistband has interesting detail. The whole result is rather retro + wildly feminine (even with Vans).
Naturally, white shorts, like Sperrys & cable-knit cardigans skew preppy. So I’m always looking for ways to offset their preppiness. My fave method: classic, checkered Vans
Naturally, white shorts, like Sperrys & cable-knit cardigans skew preppy. So I’m always looking for ways to offset their preppiness. My fave method: classic, checkered Vans

tee (6) | shorts (27) | Vans (‘Comfy Cush’ version) | similar Clare V. (or J.Crew) | watch


Summer Outfit 2: White Shorts + Vans + Chunky Cotton Sweater

Despite the retro waistband, these cute high-waisted white shorts look good with chunky cotton sweaters, too

sweater (s) | shorts (27) | Vans (‘Comfy Cush’ version) | bag (and similar)

Despite the retro waistband, these cute shorts look good with chunky sweaters, too. This is the outfit most similar to what I wore growing up in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

Fun fact: Northern Michigan is one of the preppiest places in the US. I remember coming across an old Washingtonian article, a cheat sheet on preppy style, and was thrilled that Northern Michigan got a shout-out.

It’s true. My summer uniform, growing up, was a seersucker bikini, cut-offs, and a J.Crew rollneck sweater.

Consider this my grown-up version.

My grown-up version of the J.Crew  consists of a Jenni Kayne fisherman sweater, but done in 100% cotton instead of cashmere.

sweater (s) | shorts (27) | bag (and similar)

My grown-up version consists of a Jenni Kayne fisherman sweater, but done in 100% cotton instead of cashmere. True to form, it’s perfect, and I especially love the range of interesting neutrals that she does so well.

Despite the retro waistband, these cute shorts look good with chunky sweaters, too. This is the outfit most similar to what I wore growing up in Michigan's Upper Peninsula
White shorts + Vans slip-ons nail that carefree-but-not-too-preppy vibe I go for.

sweater (s) | shorts (27) | Vans (‘Comfy Cush’ version) | bag (and similar)


Anyone else into the ‘almost preppy’ look? I’d love to hear how you guys are styling your white shorts (or white jeans). If you’d like more ideas…I did an article a few years ago called 5 Ways To Wear White Cut-offs, and I’m still wearing most of those outfit formulas (with a few little tweaks).

xo,

S

photo credits: Redfield Photography

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